The final decisions on the best architects 21 award are in. With almost 400 entries, the number of participants was higher than ever before. The diversity and range of the projects submitted was impressive, but at the same time a challenge for this year’s jury.
«It is exciting to see the vibrant way in which architecture is developing. Architects are meeting new challenges with a good deal of creativity and courage and are producing some surprising new solutions as a result. Most are guided by a strong concept that goes beyond formal approaches and does justice to the durability of the architecture and the often changing use over time. That development was recognised with this year’s award-winning projects.»
(Tobias Schwarzer, founder of the best architects award)
The jury consisting of Professor Johannes Modersohn (Berlin), Yves Moreau (Paris) and Patrick Schmid (Zurich) honoured 80 projects with the «best architects 21» award. An additional 11 projects received the distinction «best architects 21 in Gold» for their outstanding quality.
«With almost 400 project entries, it is not easy to set the evaluation criteria. The spectrum of submissions ranged from the largely faithful renovation of a stellar architectural residential building from the 1960s to an investors’ urban office complex and an architectural sculpture that ostensibly has no function. Is it even possible to define criteria that allow for the comparison of such diverse interventions? And whose achievement should win an award? Of course, the best architects award is primarily aimed at architects, but every architect knows that their work alone is not enough to create a good building. The role that the developers and authorities play is just as critical. A building of exceptional quality is therefore also always evidence of the particularly constructive collaboration of all parties concerned.
If we now consider the results of our adjudication process, then it is obvious that all the award-winning projects are characterised by exactly that kind of interaction between all participants. But they not only satisfy the original requirements by means a good compromise. Instead they manage to achieve something at a higher level on the basis of strong ideas. These projects thus make a contribution to our society.»
(Patrick Schmid / Schmid Schärer Architekten, Zurich)
The Gold winners of the best architects 21 award
In the «Residential single-family» category, the gold winners were the architectural firms Aretz Dürr Architekten from Cologne (DE) with their project «House D // 6» as well as Kast Kaeppeli Architekten from Bern (CH) and their project «Jurastrasse 58» and the Lukas Lenherr Architektur practice from Zurich (CH) for their project «Small house».
For their exceptionally creative and innovative residential buildings in the «Residential multi-family» category, the firms Atelier EGR Architectes from Marseille (FR) and their project «Jouques», BS+EMI Architektenpartner from Zurich (CH) and their project «Am Katzenbach IV/V Residential Complex», the Michael Meier und Marius Hug Architekten practice from Zurich (CH) with their project «Allenmoosstrasse Residential Building» and the firm Rapin Saiz Architectes from Vevey (CH) with their «Renovation and Elevation of a Residential Building» project also received a gold award.
A further gold distinction in the «Office and Administrative Buildings» category went to the «Hilti Office Mitte» project by the Giuliani Hönger Architekten practice from Zurich (CH).
In the «Commercial and Industrial Buildings» category, the SLIK Architekten firm from Zurich (CH) won a gold award with the project «Yond».
Additional gold awards in the «Educational Buildings» category went to the ARGE Architekten Hull Inoue Radlinsky + Wolfgang Rossbauer consortium from Zurich (CH) for its «Marzili Primary School» project.
In the «Public Buildings» category, the consortium ARGE Joos & Mathys Architekten / Daniel Nyffeler Architekten from Zurich (CH) scored a gold with its «Rüti ZH Parish Hall» project.
All the award-winning projects can be seen at www.bestarchitects.de.
About the Best Architects Award
The best architects award was created in 2006 to filter out the best and most interesting architectural projects the German-speaking countries have to offer in order to present them to a broad, interested public. In 2015, the award competition was opened up to participants across Europe.
The award is conferred each year on completed architecture projects that are distinguished by outstanding architectural quality. An independent jury of prominent architects awards the «best architects» label and the «best architects in gold» label for exceptional quality.
Due to the constantly increasing number of participants and the exceptionally high standard of submissions, the award has become a significant event in the world of architecture. The award, and the lavish publication that documents all the award-winning projects in depth, offer potential developers guidance and contribute to the dialogue concerning architectural culture. The award also allows award-winning architects and/or architectural firms to stand out in the market place and to position themselves at the forefront of the international architectural scene.