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2020 Highlights

Design Awards

This year, the jurors selected 6 submissions for Award distinction. Specifically, (1) Merit Award for Architecture, (1) Honors Award for Interior Architecture, (1) Merit Award for Interior Architecture, (3) Merit Awards for Urban Design.

The Chapter also revived the Architecture Firm Award. This award has not been made since 2004.

In addition, 3 recipients of the AIA Hong Kong Scholastic Award 2020 have been selected by the University of Hong Kong, the Chinese University of Hong Kong and Chu Hai College.

AIA Hong Kong would like to express sincere thanks and appreciation to the jurors for participation. The jurors for the 2020 Design Awards include:

Ms. Billie Tsien, AIA
Co-founders | Tod Williams Billie Tsien Architects
Mr. Claude Bøjer Godefroy, MAA, DPLG
Partner & Design Principal | Henning Larsen Hong Kong
Mr. David Dernie, RIBA
Director of Architecture | Chinese University of Hong Kong
Ms. Katherine Chia, FAIA
Founding Principal | Desai Chia Architecture
Tod Williams, FAIA
Co-founders | Tod Williams Billie Tsien Architects

The jurors for The Firm Award include:

Ms. Corrin Chan, Assoc. AIA
Mr. Felix Li, FHKIA
Ms. Moira Moser, FAIA
Mr. William Lim, FAIA

The Firm Award

AIA Hong Kong is pleased to announce this year’s recipient of AIA Hong Kong Architecture Firm Award is:
Ronald Lu & Partners (HK) Limited

Scholastic Awards

AIA Hong Kong is pleased to announce that this year’s recipients of AIA Hong Kong Scholastic Awards are:
Mr. Robin Albrecht, The Chinese University of Hong Kong
Ms. Choi Wai Pan, The University of Hong Kong
Ms. Janice Ching Yuen Ki, Chu Hai College

AlA Hong Kong Chapter Citation

AIA Hong Kong is pleased to announce this year’s Citation recipient.

 

The Mills

In recognition of distinguished achievement in the Chapter’s region for its creation of The Mills, an adaptive re-use of three former textile factories into a center for innovation, culture and learning, thereby demonstrating the value of heritage conservation to the public and bringing new life to the community.

AIA Hong Kong Architecture Firm Award 2020:
Ronald Lu & Partners

Winner: Ronald Lu & Partners

Award: Architecture Firm Award 2020

 

The 2020 Architecture Firm of the Year Jury has selected Ronald Lu & Partners as the recipient of the Architecture Firm Award 2020. The jury was impressed with the design quality of the firm’s work “demonstrating an unparalleled depth and breadth of completed work and for designing many buildings that provide a sense of place and connection to the natural environment, for collaborating with other AIA and international architects to promote the growth of our profession, and for your firm’s commitment to research that has positively influenced and improved the building code in Hong Kong”.

Honor Award for Interior Architecture:
HKFYG PH2 Tai Po Youth Hostel & Youth S.P.O.T.

Winner: Architecture Commons Limited

Award: Honor Award for Interior Architecture

 

 

The HKFYG PH2 Tai Po Youth Hostel & Youth S.P.O.T. combines two facilities in one. From G/F to 3/F, it accommodates Youth S.P.O.T. and communal facilities for the Youth Hostel. From 4/F to 19/F are the residential floors, providing 78 units for youth at an affordable rent.

In terms of design, we have been mindful of creating a lively, youthful, yet neutral palette for the youth to express themselves. The perception of connectivity and tight-knit community is key, hence the extensive use of glass between rooms and with the terraces promotes interaction and wellness. The same is applied on the street level in facilitation of neighborhood engagement. All the function rooms encourage the users to create different kinds of programming that can evolve with the life of the building. Geometric lines and facets bring consistency to an integral design and in many instances literally connect disparate zones, such as G/F Youth Spot, grand staircase and 1/f Black Box Theatre.

The room designs are the result of user research, where through the collection of 500+ samples, we discovered that youths want different styles of rooms for their own stylistic preferences. Therefore, we created three different colour palettes and different furniture arrangements to suit the stylistic preferences from darker tones, to medium tones, to bright and white tones. Work is prioritized and we provide oversized L-shaped desks wherever applicable to make room for creativity. Each room is also equipped with a pantry and individual bathroom with shower.

At conception, with the consent of HAB and HKFYG, we knew the project cannot be just subsidized housing. We propose for HKFYG to incubate the youngsters’ ideas and efforts and to help them lift themselves from the low-income bracket, and our design ushers the programme along. With faith, we hope that the hostel will not only provide better living but also an institution where alumni can mentor younger generations for years to come.

Merit Award for Architecture:
Growing Up

Winner: New Office Works
Award: Merit Award for Architecture

 

Growing Up, a pavilion for the West Kowloon Cultural District, is situated in between the waterfront and the nursery park, where trees are grown for both the future park and throughout the city. The project is a direct response to this site context, transplanting everyday urban and architectural elements from the city to the park, and reflecting on what it means to grow in the city.

A large sloped roof is supported by a series of timber columns that, like the seedlings in the adjacent nursery park, grow from an intimate human scale to the harbor scale. A stepped landscape below, reminiscent of the city’s hilly topography, provides both seating and stage for different activities. Despite its simple volume, each angle of the pavilion reveals a different sense of porosity, materiality, and scale. The north and south elevations are characterized by transparency, the surrounding trees a seamless backdrop between the pavilion’s slender columns. However, as one moves around and the columns overlap in perspective, the pavilion edge becomes more solid and frames the waterfront view. The pavilion appears the most dense from the east, the structure of the steps forming an intricate screen to accentuate the transition from park to waterfront. In contrast, an open gathering space and distinct profile emerges from the harbor.

Merit Award for Interior Architecture:
Valextra Honolulu

Winner: COLLECTIVE

Award: Merit Award for Interior Architecture

 

Italian leather-good master Valextra opens its first store in sunny Hawaii located in Honolulu’s Ala Moana Center, the largest open-air shopping center in the world.

Among the 290 stores in Ala Moana Center, the majority of them are tightly sealed with glass surfaces and small entry ways dedicating the majority of shopfront surface area to window displays.

We want to break this physical threshold to heighten the open-air shopping experience through creating a series of 4 meter tall rotating floor-to-ceiling glass doors, which open up 90 degrees perpendicularly to the entrance, serving as a truly accessible and luminous entryway.

The breakdown of the retail threshold naturally welcomes and draws visitors inside the store, leading them into a 6 meter tall interior space wrapped around with a warm beach atmosphere, with a perspectival mountain playing the dual role as a very deep window display as well as the in-store display units which customers can walk through.

“The Beach”

We introduced raw earth surfaces by the Italian craftman Matteo Brioni as a built-up of the “beaches” on the floor and in the form of modular blocks of different heights, creating a landscape that serves not only as additional display counters for Valextra’s collection but also as seating area for visitors; together with tall local floral of bright green leaves embedded on both sides of the “beach”, the intention is to bring the outside in.

“The Mountain”

A single three-dimensional ceramic block produced by Italian ceramic company Mutina were manipulated and reconfigured with a redefined custom blue color, into a progressive crescendo of three-dimensional product display mountain, which also allow visitors to transverse through.

The Valextra Honolulu boutique is not a typical store with products presented on shelves and on plinth; the design pays tribute to the beautiful archipelago, creating new retail display strategies with occupiable open-air window display unit, dramatically increasing the visual merchandizing surface are through altitude and depth.

The design is highly inspired by the Hawaiian sea and landscape, together with the architectural materiality of the traditional Italian crafts; all these elements are placed together as a celebration of the two cultures, the design emphasizes that the highly prestigious Milanese leather-goods brand is true to its roots while constantly innovating itself with the contemporary.

Merit Award for Sustainability:
Beijing Tongzhou Gen-New Rihua Conceptual Master Plan

Winner: Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP

Award: Merritt Award for Sustainability

 

The conversion of the Tongzhou Chemical Factory represents an opportunity to bring new life to an industrial complex once at the center of a working community. The detergent factory opened in 1958, close to the Grand Canal in the east of Beijing, and provided essential employment for generations of workers. The transition that its renovation represents is important, reflecting wider changes in livelihoods and lifestyles as service and creative industries continue to replace manufacturing jobs.

Focusing on people, our approach acknowledges the social significance of industrial sites as places key to establishing identity and community. Recognizing this cultural and physical heritage, the masterplan offers a new paradigm for industrial renovation, creating places for a real mixture of people and activities in memorable settings that link to the past. The site is reactivated by a synergy between two multi-scalar programs; a regional creative cultural destination overlaps a local 15-minute neighborhood center to create a unique and vibrant new role for the chemical factory.

Central to the design philosophy is a productive tension between old and new; preservation of cultural heritage is met with an embrace of the dynamism of new forms and uses. A set of distinctive places defined by the industrial characteristics of the site are activated with a contemporary setting of programs and spaces. The renovation builds upon the existing utilitarian layout of the site to create a new framework for the movement of people and activities, whilst preserving key buildings and spaces that offer a sense of history.

Merit Award for Urban Design:
Beijing Tongzhou Gen-New Rihua Conceptual Master Plan

Winner: Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP

Award: Merit Award for Urban Design

 

The conversion of the Tongzhou Chemical Factory represents an opportunity to bring new life to an industrial complex once at the center of a working community. The detergent factory opened in 1958, close to the Grand Canal in the east of Beijing, and provided essential employment for generations of workers. The transition that its renovation represents is important, reflecting wider changes in livelihoods and lifestyles as service and creative industries continue to replace manufacturing jobs.

Focusing on people, our approach acknowledges the social significance of industrial sites as places key to establishing identity and community. Recognizing this cultural and physical heritage, the masterplan offers a new paradigm for industrial renovation, creating places for a real mixture of people and activities in memorable settings that link to the past. The site is reactivated by a synergy between two multi-scalar programs; a regional creative cultural destination overlaps a local 15-minute neighborhood center to create a unique and vibrant new role for the chemical factory.

Central to the design philosophy is a productive tension between old and new; preservation of cultural heritage is met with an embrace of the dynamism of new forms and uses. A set of distinctive places defined by the industrial characteristics of the site are activated with a contemporary setting of programs and spaces. The renovation builds upon the existing utilitarian layout of the site to create a new framework for the movement of people and activities, whilst preserving key buildings and spaces that offer a sense of history.

Merit Award for Urban Design:
CANAL 24 – A Cultural Tourism Master Plan for the New York State Canal System

Winner: COLLECTIVE

Award: Merit Award for Urban Design

 

Known as the mother of cities, the Erie Canal gave birth to many settlements all along its shore. Villages along the canal boomed into dynamic cities. It helped the nation to develop a root beyond its frontier by connecting east and Midwest. Prosperity dispersed through navigations of the water body. The Erie Canal became the foundation of many canal towns and cities where commerce and manufacturing industries came into fruition. Today, 80% of the upstate population still live within 25 miles of it.

 

The gravitation of populations along the Erie Canal drives the development of various infrastructural networks across New York State. Majority of airports in New York State are serving cities located right along New York State Canal System. As we sort the sizes and populations of the cities along the canal system, we can easily identify Albany, Syracuse, Rochester, and Buffalo as the major hubs, all within 1.5-hour flight to New York City. These four major magnets are also connected by Amtrak’s Empire Service Route with 1.5-to-2-hour train rides in between and with train stations located within proximity to the city centers.

 

In between these four major cities, we have identified 20 more points of interventions along the canal system and New York State Thruway (I-90) to create a rhythm of 20-to-30-minute driving or 1-to-2-hour cruising intervals, marking and conducting the journey through the Erie Canal. Aside from looking at utilizing the existing infrastructural systems to activate the points of interventions, we also incorporate the existing and proposed Empire State Trail as a mean of access as well as potential catalytic attractions. These 24 sites are carefully selected ( as a result of making use the “Character Map” we have produced) to reflect how the Erie Canal still shapes New York today and to signify its role as National Heritage Corridor across New York State.

 

Celebrating Erie Canal’s 200th birthday as well as National Park’s 100th birthday, we are connecting the locks and engineering marvels along the Erie Canal with the National Heritage Corridor and the Empire State Trail. To exploit this unique situation where man-made interventions intertwine with nature, a new type of tourism is introduced to revitalize the essence of its heyday during industrial revolution when rust belt commerce was most viral. A series of cultural interventions will give new lives and meanings to these otherwise dormant heritage sites by arousing visitors’ awareness of the interesting juxtapositions between nature and culture. Taking the example of the revived archipelago in the Setouchi Inland Sea in Japan, the intent is to utilize arts and culture as catalysts for nature, heritage, businesses, and tourism to revive its glorious days and to claim new opportunities for New York State.

 

To support this new model of ecological and sustainable tourism, we are also proposing to convert latent buildings like vacant mills and factories, in the once glorified manufacturing towns and villages, into accommodation along the Erie Canal. New York State Canal Corporation can operate them as potential profit generators. The Spanish Government has implemented similar strategy called The Parador Hotels, a chain of luxury accommodations in castles, palaces, convents, monasteries, fortresses and other historic buildings throughout Spain. The group also operate a few modern Spanish hotels, built in the traditional style, in areas of outstanding beauty.

 

It is important to note a project of this scale will undoubtedly have to be implemented in phases; the intention of this proposal is to illustrate the fulfilled potentials and the accidental possibilities growing out of these interventions.