Of a total of 410 projects, five have been selected for the 2010 Aga Khan Award for Architecture at the Museum of Islamic Art in Doha. The five projects, selected by a Master Jury are:
- Wadi Hanifa Wetlands, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
- Revitalisation of the Hypercentre of Tunis, Tunisia
- Madinat Al-Zahra Museum, Cordoba, Spain
- Ipekyol Textile Factory, Edirne, Turkey
- Bridge School, Xiashi, Fujian, China
For more information on the winners and images read on after the break.
The Aga Kahn Award for Architecture was established by Aga Kahn in 1977 to establish and recognize excellence in architecture in societies with a significant Muslim community. The awards are given every three years and are open to all project types that affect the built environment today.
The Master Jury noted that the awarded projects were selected for confronting issues of identity and plurality in an world that grows increasingly globalized. They commended the chosen projects for their roles in improving the communities where Muslims are a majority and a minority through the improvement of the quality of life through the built landscape. This year the 9-person Master Jury included:
Souleymane Bachir Diagne (Professor, Department of Philosophy, Columbia University, USA) Omar Abdulaziz Hallaj (Architect; Chief Executive Officer, Syria Trust for Development, Syria) Salah M. Hassan (Art historian and curator; Director, Institute for Comparative Modernities, Cornell University, USA) Faryar Javaherian (Architect and curator; co-founder of Gamma Consultants, Iran) Anish Kapoor (Artist, UK) Kongjian Yu (Landscape architect/urbanist; founder and dean of Graduate School of Landscape Architecture, Peking University, China) Jean Nouvel (Architect; founding partner, Ateliers Jean Nouvel, France) Alice Rawsthorn (Design critic, International Herald Tribune, UK) Basem Al Shihabi (Architect; Managing Partner, Omrania & Associates, Saudi Arabia).
The winning projects in detail are:
Wadi Hanifa Wetlands, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
The site is located in the middle of Najd Plateau in Saudi Arabia. The Wadi Hanifa Valley, as it is known, is the longest valley near the Riyadh that carries natural water in a 4,000 square kilometer area.
This unique and precious area of the dry region has been environmentally exploited and damaged along many segmants of its route. The Arriyadh Development Authority decided to reverse this destructive cycle in its development of a environmental recreational and tourist center. Among the many ecological factors that the planners of this project have accomplished, the Aga Kahn Awards recognizes the project for:
The development of 53.2 km of roads, six major parks, three lakes, and 43 km of recreational trails.
Bioremediation of 400,000 cubic meters per day of wastewater cleaned and recycled for use The plantation of 35,500 shade trees and 4,500 date palm trees A reduction of flash floods The removal of 1,000,000 cubic metres of dumping A 10-fold increase in property values along the Wadi corridor.
Landscaping, conservation of the natural environment, development of recreation areas, wastewater treatment and accessibility have so far been developed in this region to the delightment of the population.
Revitalisation of the Hypercentre of Tunis, Tunisia
The Mediterranean architectural heritage of North African cities is a reminder of the cultural exchanges that took place over centuries of trade. The old city of Tunis is one such cultural center that has a range of important architectural monuments.
The revitalization plan by the Association de Sauvegarde de la Médina de Tunis (ASM) aimed to restructure the public spaces along a central avenue transforming it into a chiefly pedestrian route and restoring the architectural treasures along the way, including the Théâtre municipal de Tunis, Marché central, Ancien Tribunal administratif and Cinéma Palace.
The project is an ever-expanding endeavor, which the ASM leaves open to public and private sectors to continue restoring and preserving the cultural roots of Tunis.
Architect: Association de Sauvegarde de la Médina de Tunis Location: Tunis, Tunisia Client: Municipality of Tunis
Madinat Al-Zahra Museum, Cordoba, Spain
The site of this project is an archeological treasure of the tenth-century Madinat al-Zahzra palace city, a testament to Islamic presence in Western Europe in what is today Cordoba, Spain. The intervention is conceived as a museum for the advancement of the research and archeological digs on the site.
It is a center for training and interpretation of the complexities that unfold at the archeological site. The strength of this project is its ability to blend into the landscape, provide a public space for observation and learning, and create an institution from which archeologists could study their work.
Simple material and details enrich the purity of the landscape. Poured concrete walls, iroko wood cladding, and limestone paving are intended to evoke temporality on the scale of an archeological site.
Architect: Nieto Sobejano Arquitectos, Fuensanta Nieto & Enrique Sobejano Location: Cordoba, Spain Client: Junta de Andalucía, Consejería de Cultura
Ipekyol Textile Factory, Edirne, Turkey
The Ipekyol Textile Factory is a center for production of high-quality textiles which is intended to enrich the qualities of the work environment for the employees.
Local materials, reduced energy use, and enhanced thermal performance make use of the site and promote a sense of preservation and conservativism. The U-shaped factory building integrates administration and production under one roof, breaking down the heirarchy of traditional companies.
Five internal courtyards and a glazed facade provide natural light and ventilation and visual access to the natural landscape for the well-being of workers.
Architect: EAA – Emre Arolat Architects Location: Edirne, Turkey Client: Ipekyol Giyim Sanayi
Bridge School, Xiashi, Fujian, China
The school is a literal bridge over a small creek that runs through the Xiashi village. The structure, which is composed of two steel trusses, houses the functions of a school. It is both a passage and a center for learning and exploration for children.
The structure is suspended above a pedestrian bridge that weaves under the school. The sschool has little reference to the village architecture but the new school evokes progress and modernity into the declining village.
The school functions as a central social space which provides a public library and open stages to the life of the village. Integreated into the public spaces outside, the Bridge School provides an access point for all of the residents’ use.
Architect: Li Xiaodong Atelier Location: Xiashi, Fujian Province, China Client: Xiashi Village