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Finalists Announced for 2014/2015 MCHAP.emerge Awards

16:00 - 18 March, 2016
Finalists Announced for 2014/2015 MCHAP.emerge Awards

The Mies Crown Hall Americas Prize has announced five finalists for its biannual MCHAP.emerge awards, celebrating the best architecture in the Americas by emerging practices. The five projects were selected from a list of 55, coming from 95 different nominators, that were announced last week. The projects represent the best architecture completed by young architects over the past two years in both North and South America, with finalists coming from Canada, the United States, Mexico, Chile and Paraguay.

The winner of the prize will be announced on the evening of April 1st at a symposium at the S. R. Crown Hall in Chicago, after an afternoon in which the finalists present their work to the jury, and the Architecture faculty and student body of IIT. Read on to see the list of finalists.

5468796 Architecture's Social Housing in Winnipeg: Do We Expect Too Much of Design?

09:00 - 12 February, 2016
© James Brittain Photography
© James Brittain Photography

Architecture serves many essential functions in the fabric of the built environment, but it is the perpetual deficit of housing that some might argue is the field’s ultimate clarion call. In virtually every global city, growing populations and limited supplies of affordable dwellings are the major issues of twenty-first century life—and therefore are indications of the continued relevance of architecture in solving vexing urban predicaments. The last century offered early promise in addressing such issues with proposals to house the masses in immense slabs and box buildings, structures almost as large as their social ambition. But what became an asset of scale overlooked, or more probably misunderstood, the social degradation that such largeness elicited.

Aware of the fact that a one-size-fits-all approach to social housing rarely brings the desired outcomes of sociability, accountability, and community, Winnipeg’s 5468796 Architecture sought to reinvent the typology on a smaller scale. The outcome, a project in Winnipeg’s Central Park neighborhood known as Centre Village, is a 25-unit housing complex that prioritizes windows for observation and public spaces for socializing. Initially heralded as a beacon for public housing done right, the project was recently the target of vitriol in a Guardian article, claiming its secluded courtyard makes it "a magnet for drinking and drug-taking" and that its architectural vanity is to the detriment of apartment sizes and layouts. Subsequently, the Winnipeg Free Press published a response piece, "Building a better neighbourhood," and more recently on ArchDaily, 5468796 published a “letter-to-the-editor” to share their side of story and to dispel some of the negativity surrounding Centre Village. The myriad of perspectives can make you wonder: who’s right?

5468796 Architecture's Response to The Guardian Over their "Failed" Social Housing Project

09:30 - 29 January, 2016
5468796 Architecture's Response to The Guardian Over their "Failed" Social Housing Project, © James Brittain Photography
© James Brittain Photography

Early this month, The Guardian published a widely shared and debated article titled "Crime in the community: when 'designer' social housing goes wrong." The article told the story of Centre Village, a social housing project in Winnipeg designed by 5468796 Architecture and Cohlmeyer Architecture Limited, examining how noble intentions resulted in what they describe as "apartments poorly suited to family life, and a building structure that seems to act as a magnet for drinking and drug-taking at all hours."

Unsurprisingly 5468796 Architecture, who disagreed with much of the article's conclusions, wrote a response to the editor of Guardian Cities in the hope that their "letter to the editor" would provide some balance to the story. After The Guardian declined to publish the letter, the firm reached out to ArchDaily to ensure that their side of the debate was heard. Here is that letter in full.

We are writing to you in response to the Guardian article concerning Centre Village and many of the comments and re-posts over the last week. We believe the story that was published was inaccurate and provide the following for your information:

© James Brittain Photography © 5468796 Architecture © James Brittain Photography © James Brittain Photography +7

When "Designer" Social Housing Goes Wrong: The Failures of Winnipeg's Center Village Project

14:00 - 5 January, 2016
When "Designer" Social Housing Goes Wrong: The Failures of Winnipeg's Center Village Project, Centre Village / 5468796 Architecture + Cohlmeyer Architecture Limited. Image © James Brittain Photography
Centre Village / 5468796 Architecture + Cohlmeyer Architecture Limited. Image © James Brittain Photography

The challenges of designing social housing are complex. As Martha Thorne recently told the Guardian, "It’s not enough to make community space and say, ‘People are going to see each other’... Architects really have to understand the context from the client – the cultural context, to the bigger context, to the economics, to the future of the residents who’ll live there.” Speaking about Winnipeg's well intentioned Centre Village project designed by 5468796 Architecture, Thorne believes many of these challenges are new to architects.  

Just five years old, Center Village was designed as a community-oriented micro village for 25 families in one of Canada's poorest urban areas. Since its establishment, the complex has become a hot bed for crime; courtyards are being used by vagrants as shelter from police, while large families try to make a life within the cramp quarters of each home.

32 "Discarded" Helsinki Guggenheim Proposals You Should Know About

01:00 - 19 December, 2014

The search for a design for Helsinki’s new Guggenheim Museum is well under way. Over a thousand entrants submitted anonymous proposals for the harbor-side museum, and though six finalists have now been chosen, the incredible wealth of talent and effort present in the submissions is hard to ignore. We celebrate that talent here, showcasing 32 great designs-that-could-have-been for the Helsinki Guggenheim. Learn more about all of them, after the break!

Centre Village / 5468796 Architecture + Cohlmeyer Architecture Limited

01:00 - 9 June, 2013
Centre Village  / 5468796 Architecture + Cohlmeyer Architecture Limited, © James Brittain Photography
© James Brittain Photography

© James Brittain Photography © James Brittain Photography © 5468796 Architecture © James Brittain Photography +24

The Old Market Square Stage / 5468796 Architecture

01:00 - 31 May, 2013
The Old Market Square Stage / 5468796 Architecture, © James Brittain
© James Brittain

© James Brittain © James Brittain © James Brittain © James Brittain +22

The Avenue on Portage / 5468796 Architecture

01:00 - 21 May, 2013
The Avenue on Portage / 5468796 Architecture, © James Brittain
© James Brittain

© James Brittain © James Brittain © James Brittain © James Brittain +21

‘Flying Saucer’ Condominium Proposal / 5468796 Architecture

01:00 - 28 April, 2013
‘Flying Saucer’ Condominium Proposal / 5468796 Architecture, © 5468796 Architecture
© 5468796 Architecture

Set for completion in 2014, Winnipeg’s “Flying Saucer” condominium project 62M, designed by Winnipeg-based studio 5468796 Architecture, will occupy the corner of MacDonald Avenue and Waterfront Drive, close to the Exchange District. Named after its address, 62M will be a two-storey, circular building lifted up on 35-foot stilts. Its circular design is spatially efficient and will provide each unit with a view. As a whole, the 360° plan provides the widest possible perimeter for glass with the smallest amount of exterior envelope to construct. More images and architects' description after the break.

5468796 Architecture Inc. Recieves First Annual Emerging Architectural Practice Award by the RAIC

00:00 - 9 April, 2013
5468796 Architecture Inc. Recieves First Annual Emerging Architectural Practice Award by the RAIC, Bohemier Residence / 5468796 Architecture + Cohlmeyer Architecture; Photo © 5468796 Architecture
Bohemier Residence / 5468796 Architecture + Cohlmeyer Architecture; Photo © 5468796 Architecture

Earlier this week, the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada announced that 5468796 Architecture Inc. will be the first recipient of the the Emerging Architectural Practice Award now in its first year.  The firm is a Winnipeg-based collaborative studio of 12 young professionals with Johanna Hurme, MRAIC, Sasa Radulovic, MRAIC, and Colin Neufeld, MRAIC leading the office.  The firm operates under the principle that each project, while keeping to the parameters of cost, client expectations and site restrictions, must "advance architecture in some way".  

Join us after the break for more on 5468796 Architecture and their recent award.

RAIC 2011 Awards of Excellence

08:43 - 19 April, 2011
OMS Stage / 5468796 Architecture © 5468796 Architecture
OMS Stage / 5468796 Architecture © 5468796 Architecture

The RAIC Awards of Excellence recognize distinction in the field of architecture. Awarded categories include Green Buildings and Innovation in Architecture as well as the Architectural Firm Award which was given to Montgomery Sisam Architects. Members of the jury included: Peter Busby, Teresa Coady, Stephen Pope for Green Buildings and Enzo Gardin, Dan Hanganu, Gregory Henriquez for Innovation in Architecture.

Recipients and Honorable Mentions for 2011 RAIC Awards of Excellence following the break.