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This year, the DETAIL Prize jury will award two first prizes of equal rank to two projects dedicated to the upgrading and conversion of historical buildings. In doing so, it is recognising a task that is becoming increasingly important in the work of architects. The starting point and chosen strategies are radically different, but the effects in both cases are similar: Long-term vacancies have been overcome and social added-value created. The design creativity shown here gives hope that the preservation of threatened and unlisted buildings can also succeed elsewhere.
The jury's decision in favour of the two prize winners was unanimous and based on an equal consideration of new buildings and renovations. A "renovation bonus" was therefore not taken into account in the evaluation. 

DETAIL Preis 2018, Jurysitzung

Jury meeting on 25th of June; The jury members (f.l.t.r.): Dr. Sandra Hofmeister, Jakob Schoof, Kjetil Trædal Thorsen, Prof. Manfred Grohmann, Prof. Dr. Philippe Block

1st prize
Zeitz MOCAA, Cape Town

Thomas Heatherwick Studios

"In Cape Town, an industrial monument has become a symbol of a new era of cultural self-determination. This is despite the structure initially being totally unsuited for its intended use. The fact that something fantastic has nevertheless emerged from it is due to the architects' design audacity, which allows the new to appear on an equal footing with the old.
On the facades, Thomas Heatherwick Studios have created a delicate contrast to the massive presence of the silo pipes through the regained grid structure of the elevator tower, the new roof structures and the faceted glass facades. However, it is in the central atrium above all else that this building reveals its true strength. Spaces of this monumentality rarely arise in architecture today – and when they do, then mostly in existing structures in which an abundance of spatial and atmospheric potential has already been created.
Symbolic value, function, atmosphere and construction find a unique synthesis here. The bold incision through the silos surprises with its asymmetrical shape, which only becomes apparent at second glance as a magnification of a grain many thousands of times over. The visible, constructive reinforcement of the silo walls, which became necessary due to the newly created vault form, has also been perfectly executed. Old and new can thus be read not only in the building as a whole, but also in the spatial structure and even in the cut edges of the concrete as mutually dependent and reinforcing components of the building."
More information about the project.


1st prize
Harquitectes

Cristalleries Planell Civic Centre, Barcelona

"A former glass factory gives the new civic centre in Barcelona's parliamentary district a striking face. The listed historical facade of the Cristalleries Planell is situated in front of the building on its southern side. H Arquitectes have carefully taken up the material language of the existing building and expanded it to include high, largely closed brick surfaces. In this way, the various historical layers in the architecture of the civic centre are recognisable as independent elements, which, however, do not compete with each other, but instead complement each other. The architects use the dialogue between old and new to add special qualities to the rooms of the various educational institutions and the hotel, which is also located in the building, including not only daylight for the interiors, but also natural temperature control, rendering air conditioning superfluous. On the roof of the building there are four pyramid-shaped solar chimneys. They are part of a system that allows air to circulate vertically through the building during the summer months and which protects it from the cold in winter. The area between the historic and the new facade serves as a buffer zone for temperature compensation and shields the interiors from road noise.
The intervention of H Arquitectes has created an exemplary public building that shares its history, self-image and spatial qualities with the citizens of Barcelona."
More information about the project.


Special prize – "structure"
Chilean Pavilion EXPO 2015, Milan/Temuco
Undurraga Deves Arquitectos

"Recycling is currently the subject of much discussion in architecture. Rarely has it been implemented as consistently as in this building, which served as the Chilean Expo pavilion in Milan in 2015 and which has now found a new use as a cultural centre in southern Chile. It starts with the basic concept for the supporting structure: Like a bridge girder, the entire building rests on just six inverted steel tripods and thus requires only a minimum of foundations. The half-timbered construction made of glued pine wood characterises the building not only on the outside, but also on the inside through the systematic renunciation of cladding. Structural logic is combined with elegance in this structure, because steel components have been systematically minimised or cleverly removed from view. Instead, traditional wood joining techniques celebrate a renaissance here. The oversizing of the wooden components is not a shortcoming in this case, but instead strengthens the expression of the architecture extremely effectively. It can also be read as a political statement: With this building, Chile is not only recognising its own role as a leading wood producer, but also celebrating its competence in wood processing and in the planning of timber structures."
More information about the project.


Special prize – "DETAIL inside"
Atrium of the Life Science & Bioengineering Building, Technical University of Denmark, Lyngby

Christensen & Co Architects and Rørbæk og Møller Arkitekter

"Building 202 of the Technical University of Denmark bundles various life science and bioengineering departments and research institutions under one roof. The largest new building on the Lyngby campus to date not only provides the researchers with workplaces, but also with a central atrium, which Christensen & Co Architects, together with Rørbæck og Møller Arkitekter have designed as a place of communication and interaction. Offset skylights allow daylight to enter the three-storey-high space, so that users are always aware of the weather conditions and times of day. In addition, the atrium is illuminated with artificial light. Individual meeting boxes, which protrude into the space at various heights and on various floors, and which open up to its centre with large windows, structure the central foyer of the university building and allow visual contact between the users. The reduced materials and surfaces of glass and vertically-mounted oak slats combine all elements to form a continuous unit. Thanks to the stringent and balanced composition of space, the atrium impresses not only with its social function but also with its special atmosphere."
More information about the project.

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