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Scott Whitby wins British Council’s Doha Design Prize

Scott Whitby Studio's Doha Prize-winning 'City of Play' proposal
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Emerging practice Scott Whitby Studio has triumphed in the 2016 Unlimited Doha Design Prize run by the British Council 

The outfit worked alongside Gulf-based designers Omer Can Aksoy, Gizem Kahraman and Deena Al Terawi on the proposal which was developed during a week-long residency held in Doha at the beginning of March.

The winning scheme, named City of Play proposed a contemporary city which built upon its past to provide for new urban communities.

It presented a vision for education and family life at the heart of the city with a chaing of public realm transformations to revitalise the historic fabric of Doha.

The British Council’s Doha residency project paired up teams of architects and designers from both the UK and the Gulf region.

In total 21 designers participated in this year’s prize residency. Working in four teams they were tasked with developing new ideas to help improve the experience of movement and accessibility within Doha and beyond.

Alex Scott Whitby, founding director Scott Whitby Studio, said: ‘We are overwhelmed and tremendously honoured to have won the Doha Unlimited Design Prize. As a team, and on behalf of all the participants, the last ten days have proved to be insightful, rewarding and hugely productive.

’We have gained new friends, and creative partners who we are very much looking forward to working with to further our winning concept ‘A City of Play’ in the coming years. We are very excited that by winning the prize we will now have the opportunity to continue working with the people and organisations that we met in Doha to potentially make a positive contribution to Doha’s future built heritage.’ 

Scott Whitby Studio's Doha Prize-winning 'City of Play' proposal

Scott Whitby Studio’s Doha Prize-winning ‘City of Play’ proposal

Vicky Richardson, former British Council director of Architecture Design Fashion, commented: ‘This platform provided an opportunity to explore and develop new ideas and concepts as well as practice innovative design solutions that will improve the experience of living in the 21st century.

‘The fruits of this week-long residency have been a set of creative ideas and exchange of expertise between participants who came from diversified cultures to share their creative design talents. I look forward to seeing how these ideas develop and impact the future of Doha over the years ahead.’

Jane Duncan, RIBA President, added: ‘As an international organisation with a global reach, RIBA was delighted to have supported this creative project in Doha. RIBA is committed to promoting design excellence in the delivery of architecture in the Gulf and, through a Chapter based in the region, is leading the representation of locally-based architects and co-professionals.

‘We are particularly pleased that the Prize encouraged collaboration between so many architects based in the UK and the Gulf, with fantastic results.’

Scott Whitby Studio’s team will now be awarded a grant of £15,000 to develop the project proposal during the next year.

The prize follows that which was picked up by you&me architecture in 2013. The practice’s Iris Papadatou and Alicja Borkowska were awarded £15,000 to develop their winning proposal for transforming an historic area of the Qatari capital and worked with local architects in a week-long residency in Doha.

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