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RIBA Award winners 2014: EU Awards

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This year 12 buildings have won RIBA EU Awards

Vienna University Library by Zaha Hadid Architects


If a newly created university campus requires a major gesture to put it firmly on the map, then Zaha Hadid Architect’s Library and Learning Centre for the Vienna University of Economics and Business delivers it with massive self-assurance - a true ‘icon’ for the new campus. The building fulfils a far more relevant and important purpose as a readily visible and usable resource for the new site and the popularity of the building with students and other users as a place for study is clearly evident.

Client - Vienna University of Economics and Business
Contractor - Bauunternehmung Granit
Contract value - Undisclosed
Gross internal area - 37,220m²

Joachimstrasse, Berlin by David Chipperfield Architects


The Joachimstrasse project, located in the ‘creative’ district of Mitte, imposes its presence in a progressive manner and with great subtlety. There are four new buildings that circle the existing brick industrial building and the fabric of all the buildings is noticeably consistent and monolithic. This is a remarkable and discreet project, a thorough exploration of minimal design that results in comfortable, well-lit interiors linked by an active social outdoor space.

Client - David Chipperfield Architects
Contractor - No main contractor
Contract value - Undisclosed
Gross internal area - 1,800m²

Nuovo Centro Civico, Florence by Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners


This is a new town centre (above) in the suburbs of Florence. RSHP’s intervention takes the form of an ensemble of buildings laid out around three sides of the square. The architecture (concrete and steel-framed buildings clad in glass and terracotta) is modest. It puts the piazza, fountains, benches and civic life at centre stage. The project brings together the tram system, public hall, shops, business space, and housing, which are beginning to effect a cultural and economic transformation.

Client - Scandicci Centro
Contractor - CMSA Cooperativa di Muratori Sterratori ed Affini
Contract value - €33,950,000
Gross internal area - 15,500m²

Vartov Square, Copenhagen by Hall McKnight Architects



This is a modest public square (above) that has been design delightfully. It can be enjoyed by sitting on the edge of the square in one of the cafés, or read as work of architecture that continues the design tradition of Denmark - in part by making evident aspects of the history of the site. This robustly detailed square will age gracefully and become part of the fabric of the city. An intelligent use of space to create place in one of Europe’s great capital cites.

Client - Copenhagen City Council
Contractor - OK Nygaard
Contract value - Undisclosed
Gross internal area - 8,800m² (all external)

The Blue Planet, Denmark by 3NX


The National Aquarium in Kastrup (top) has had over 1.2 million visits in its first year, 400,000 more than the target. It is easy to appreciate the delight that visitors, young and old alike, can experience in the excellently displayed fish and other aquatic life. Architecturally, the best internal space is the café, which opens out onto views of the harbour animated by container ships. The back of house is arguably more expressive than the carefully choreographed exhibition of aquatic biodiversity.

Client - Den Blå Planet, National Aquarium Denmark, Kastrup
Contractor - MT Højgaard
Contract value - €47,130,320
Gross internal area - 9,680m²

Kraaiennest Metro Station, Amsterdam by Maccreanor Lavington


This new station is located in the still bleak Bijlmermeer neighbourhood, which is now undergoing a welcome and long overdue programme of enhancement. It provides a robust, well-considered and impeccably detailed architectural solution to the development of a new transport facility. There appears to be a serious issue with graffiti in the area and few surfaces are untouched, except the surfaces of the new station which currently seem to be left alone.

Client - Dienst infrastructuur Verkeer Vervoer, GVB, Stadsdeel Zuidoost
Contractor - Strukton Bouw
Contract value - €14,000,000
Gross internal area - 37,220m²

Musiktheater Linz, Austria by Terry Pawson Architects


This project is an excellent - if rare - example of how an architect can win an open international competition with a bold, brilliant idea that questions and extends the brief. The architect’s idea was to move the site to enable the opera house to connect to the Volksgarten (People’s Park), and become a cultural focus at the end of Linz’s main avenue. Here the building provides a strong contemporary civic presence in its urban setting, creating a clear, animated edge to this central city park.

Client - Musiktheater Linz
Contractor - Musiktheater Linz
Contract value - Undisclosed
Gross internal area - 52,420m²

Marseille Vieux Port, France by Foster + Partners


This exquisitely and simply detailed structure is a sheltered events space, which forms part of the architect’s masterplan for the regeneration for Marseille’s UNESCO World Heritage-listed Vieux Port. It is constructed in mirrored stainless steel with a tapered paper-thin edge and raised on slender steel columns. It provides shade and shelter from rain. The judges felt that the project reinforces the area’s civic qualities and enhances its tourist appeal, while safeguarding its function as a marina and boat yard.

Client - Marseille Provence Metropole
Contractor - Eiffage
Contract value - Undisclosed
Gross internal area - 1,012m²

Danish Maritime Museum, Copenhagen by Bjarke Ingels Group


This museum is a tour de force that has exceeded projected visitor numbers and shown how burying a building does not have to diminish the dynamism of the architecture. The winning idea not only creates an exhibition space that encircles and integrates with the old dock, but preserves it as a space for further opportunities of exhibition and performance. It generates much more than the brief demanded, and retains the underground post-industrial landscape.

Client - Danish Maritime Museum
Contractor - E Pihl & Son
Contract value - Undisclosed
Gross internal area - 5,000m²

Lenbachhaus, Munich by Foster + Partners


The new, three-storey art gallery extension replaces existing 1972 buildings with new frontages to the west, south and east and provides a new principal entrance. This is a beautifully conceived and executed project that has integrated new and old, both internally and externally, with consummate ease and elegance. The newly extended gallery is extraordinarily popular with visitors and it has more than fulfilled the hopes and expectations of the client body.

Client - The City of Munich Cultural and Building Departments
Contractor - Riedel Bau
Contract value - Undisclosed
Gross internal area - 12,328m²

Baakenhafen Bridge, Hamburg by Wilkinson Eyre


This 165m-long bridge has been built as part of the Hamburg’s 157ha HafenCity development. As a piece of urban architecture and not just a pragmatic engineering solution, it is very successful at many scales: as a large infrastructure project and part of the still-industrial landscape; at a local level as a link to and from the city centre; and at an intimate and human scale. It gives a sense of place and offers a new and enduring experience for the whole community.

Client - HafenCity
Contractor - Victor Buyck Steel Construction
Contract value - Undisclosed
Gross internal area - Not available

Department of Law, Vienna University by CRAB studio


The first impression of this project (above) comes from the bold use of colour inside and out: designed to ‘cheer up’ the often grey skies of Vienna’s Prater district. However, the more enduring memory that comes at the end of the visit is of the quirky humanity, thoughtful planning and focus on social and user well-being. The client and users are clearly delighted with the buildings, and although they are ‘rough around the edges’, much has been achieved for a modest budget.

Client - BIG Bundesimmobiliengesellschaft
Contractor - Bauunternehmung Granit Gesellschaft
Contract value - €29,000,000
Gross internal area - 20,000m²

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