The World Architecture Festival (WAF) is celebrating its 10th year of honouring great architectural designs across the globe this year. The event, which includes a much anticipated awards night, will be held at the Arena Berlin in Germany from Nov 15-17.
Its theme for this edition is “Performance”.
“This year, we will examine the multiple aspects of performance that architecture has to embrace: aesthetic, technical, economic and psychological. We will be discussing buildings designed for performance – for example theatres and concert halls – but also the role that buildings play in the life and spectacle of the city itself,” said WAF programme director Paul Finch in a press release.
At the heart of the Festival is the WAF Awards, dubbed the “Oscars of architecture”, which recognises works across completed buildings, future projects and landscape projects in 30 categories.
This time around, three Malaysian projects have been shortlisted for the WAF Awards under the Completed Buildings section. They are:
1. Housing Category:
Architect: RT+Q Architects
The Capers is a mixed residential development comprising two 36-storey towers and two five-storey blocks of residential apartments that rise from a landscaped carpark podium. Located in Sentul, the project also won the Chicago Athenaeum Museum of Architecture and Design 2016 International Architecture Awards.
The inspiration for the project’s design comes from the site’s geographical features of flat land and rugged green terrain. The organic design of the towers is inspired by lalang, a coarse weedy grass, billowing softly in the wind.
2. Mixed-Use Category: Paragon Pan’gaea, Cyberjaya (see main image above by AK Archipedia)
Architect: AK+ Archipedia
Considered one of the most eye-catching developments in Cyberjaya, Paragon is an 18-storey office, soho, retail and lifestyle development. Divided into two main blocks, the slated-design structure rises and falls fluidly, with a swimming pool and other facilities located between the sections.
The project is the first phase and the gateway to the Pan’gaea mixed-development project. Paragon houses 196 soho suites and retail outlets set aside for business or leisure activities.
3. New and Old Category: KL Sports City Stage 1
Redeveloped in time for this year’s SEA Games that were held in August in Kuala Lumpur, the first stage of KL Sports City comprises four refurbished, world-class sporting venues: the Bukit Jalil National Stadium, Putra Stadium (now Axiata Arena), the National Aquatic Centre, and the National Hockey Stadium.
The National Stadium’s facade sports distinguishing stripes referencing the Malayan tiger. This series of vertical louvres provides sun shading and natural ventilation to the concourse without blocking out the original stadium’s structure. The louvres are also fitted with LED lights to allow digital displays to flow over the façade.
Chairing the super jury for the WAF Awards is Robert Ivy, chief executive officer of the American Institute of Architects. Other jury members are Nathalie de Vries, director and cofounder of MVRDV architectural firm; Ian Ritchie, founder of Ian Ritchie Architects; and Christoph Ingenhoven, founder of Ingenhoven Architects.
As part of the 10th anniversary celebrations, WAF organisers have also launched the WAF Manifesto, which identifies key challenges that architects will need to address over the next 10 years, including climate, energy and carbon; water; ageing and health; re-use; smart city technology; building technology; cultural identity; ethics and values; power and justice; and virtual worlds.
The inaugural WAFX Prize will also be given out to future projects that identify such challenges.
Meanwhile, running concurrently with WAF is the Inside World Festival of Interiors with its own awards and conference programme.
One Malaysian project shortlisted for the World Festival of Interiors Awards under the Residential category is a two-storey terrace called Courtyard House@Sungai Buloh, designed by O2 Design Atelier.
Its interiors feature an open plan concept where the living, dining and kitchen spaces are all connected, paying homage to the traditional concept of courtyards in Peranakan houses. A double volume space is created in the middle of the house, where two big trees and low shrubs are planted.