Cleveland Rooftop, Sydney by SJB is up for a house architecture award

Australian projects are set to blitz this year’s World Architecture Festival, with 38 nominations across a range of categories including houses, commercial buildings, mixed-use projects and masterplanning.

While architects from the UK were the most represented, Australia, the US and Turkey were close behind, and Asia is now showing increasing strength year-on-year.

“This year’s shortlist has a hugely diverse geographic range,” AF program director Paul Finch said.

“The use of water has been striking and there is evidence of real interest in climate modifications using novel techniques. Colourful architecture makes a strong showing and many of the smaller projects we have shortlisted will punch above their weight. We look forward to welcoming shortlisted architects to our tenth edition in Berlin this November.”

Aside from the awards, WAF will include a conference based around the theme of “Performance”.

Fitzroy-Crossing-Renal-Hostel, WA. Iredale Pedersen Hook

A standout Australian project is the Fitzroy Crossing Renal Hostel in WA by Iredale Pedersen Hook Architects, created to provide a place to live for Aboriginal people with end stage renal disease.

“The site has been planned to reflect the four major language groups in town; with the site planning, paths and landscape species selection referencing ‘bush tucker’, medicine and iconic plants from their homelands,” a WAF statement said.

“Due to the remote location and limited access to skilled trades for construction and maintenance the regional construction type is concrete slab on ground, with steel frames, Colorbond Steel and painted fibre cement cladding. Technologies are kept as simple as possible.”

House for Trees by Vo Trong Nghia Architects.

A Vietnamese project with a lot of interest is House for Trees in Ho Chi Minh City by Vo Trong Nghia Architects, the aim of which is to bring back green to the city, “accommodating high-density dwellings with big tropical trees as well as enabling residents to interact and communicate across generation”.

Gardens are located on the top of the vertically stacked space, which are bounded by sliding glass doors.

“This strategy improves the microclimate thanks to natural ventilation and daylight in every room, but also the alternately stacking openings increase visibility and interaction between the family members.”

Overall the goal is to reduce energy consumption, CO2 emissions, flood risk and the urban heat island effect.

Urban Rigger by Bjarke Ingels Group.

Over in Denmark, the Urban Rigger in Copenhagen by BIG – Bjarke Ingels Group is a carbon neutral floating home made out of shipping containers.

“Urban Rigger is the first floating, carbon neutral housing constructed from shipping containers and designed for mass production to create an affordable and sustainable alternative to rising housing prices in major cities,” a WAF statement said.

“With the decline of shipyard industries in the 21st century, the project aims to transform containers that would ultimately become waste into optimal homes. By utilising an upcycled container, the project expends as little as 450 kilowatts, rather than the approximate 1100 tonnes of CO2 required to build a new home.

“Urban Rigger offers an immediate solution to this housing shortage, increasing the number of residences in major port cities. During a period in which climate change and sea level rise has become a concern, this is one of the most resilient forms of housing because it moves with the water – it’s the only building type that will never flood.”

The Co Op by Nikken Sekkei.

The Co Op Kyosai Plaza, Tokyo, Japan by Nikken Sekkei is a work of resilience and sustainability.

“Co-op Kyosai Plaza by Nikken Sekkei integrates the latest in environmental building systems, making the most of the lessons learned after the earthquake,” WAF said.

“It features a green façade with natural ventilation, reverse slab system with no suspended ceilings, and a combination of ceiling radiation panel airconditioning system and subfloor ventilation system. The reverse slab construction allows for radiant ceilings, which preserves thermal mass while moving air downward.

“It is run by a new power system consisting of solar energy and cogeneration waste to enhance the efficiency to create a comfortable office environment, conducive to business continuity and productivity. Additionally, the lighting and the airflow coming through the carpet tiles can be adjusted.

“The interior has subfloor ventilation, making suspended ceilings unnecessary and taking away the concern that they may fall. The extensive underfloor space can be used for storing emergency supplies. The heat capacity of concrete is easy to utilise, which naturally adds to the formation of a stable indoor thermal environment.”

The Smile by Alison-Brooks Architects

The CLT Smile project by Alison Brooks Architects, part of the 2016 London Design Festival, is up for an award too.

“Located in Chelsea College of Art’s historic Rootstein Hopkins Parade Ground, this 136 square metre public pavilion was constructed using large format cross-laminated hardwood panels and is the world’s most challenging CLT structure built to date.

“The pavilion was pre-fabricated as 12 industrial-sized American tulipwood CLT panels by a pioneering company in Germany. Up to 14 metres long and 4.5m wide, these were the world’s largest engineered timber panels in terms of production.

“Made predominantly in tulipwood, one of the most abundant American hardwoods, the 70 cubic metres harvested to manufacture The Smile would take less than five minutes to be replaced by new growth in a North American forest. Its carbon footprint was minus -5.6 metric tonnes of CO2 equivalent.”

Winners will be announced in Berlin in November.

Australian projects shortlisted:


Civic and Community

  • TKD Architects – Wagga Wagga Courthouse / Wagga Wagga, Australia


  • CODA Studio– Karratha Superclinic / Karratha, Australia
  • Iredale Pedersen Hook Architects – Fitzroy Crossing Renal Hostel / Fitzroy Crossing, Australia
  • Silver Thomas Hanley, DesignInc and McBride Charles Ryan – Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre / Melbourne, Australia

Hotel & Leisure

  • Carr – Jackalope / Melbourne, Australia


  • Andrew Burges Architects – Brick House / Sydney, Australia
  • Architects EAT – Moving House / Melbourne, Australia
  • Chloe Naughton – Inverdon House / Bowen, Australia
  • CplusC Architectural Workshop – Living Screen House / Sydney, Australia
  • Iredale Pedersen Hook Architects – Falcon Beach House / Perth, Australia
  • SJB – Cleveland Rooftop / Sydney, Australia
  • Tzannes – Point Piper Residence / Sydney, Australia


  • SJB – 41 Birmingham / Sydney, Australia


  • ACME – Eastland / Ringwood, Australia

New & Old

  • TKD Architects – The Glasshouse at Goonoo Goonoo Station / Goonoo Goonoo, Australia


  • Francis-Jones Morehen Thorp – EY Centre, 200 George Street / Sydney, Australia
  • Shane Thompson Architects – 490 Consulting Suites / Spring Hill, Australia SLETH


  • Andrew Burges Architects – East Sydney Early Learning Centre / Sydney, Australia
  • Architectus – The Mandeville Centre / Toorak, Australia
  • Cox Architecture – Sir Zelman Cowen Centre for Science / Hawthorn, Australia


  • Francis-Jones Morehen Thorp – 580 George Street Cafe and Integrated Lobby / Sydney, Australia
  • Iredale Pedersen Hook Architects – Elizabeth Quay Gelato Kiosk / Perth, Australia
  • The Buchan Group – Chastone Shopping Centre / Melbourne, Australia


  • Cox Architecture – Anna Meares Stadium / Brisbane, Australia
  • Cox Architecture – Willinga Park / Bawley Point, Australia


  • James Davidson Architect – Wilson’s Cottage / Lizard Island, Australia


Commercial mixed-use

  • Francis-Jones Morehen Thorp – The Star / Sydney, Australia


  • Cox Architecture – Waltzing Matilda Centre / Winton, Australia
  • Terroir – Penguin Parade Visitor Centre / Phillip Island, Australia

Leisure-led development

  • Allen Jack+Cottier Architects – Sydney Fish Markets / Sydney, Australia


  • Allen Jack+Cottier Architects – Sydney Fish Markets / Sydney, Australia


  • MHN Design Union – Heritage Traces in Surry Hills / Sydney, Australia


  • Cox Architecture – Willinga Park / Bawley Point, Australia
  • Dangar Group and Black Beetle – Cleveland & Co / Sydney, Australia

Small projects prize

  • Francis-Jones Morehen Thorp – 580 George Street Cafe and Integrated Lobby / Sydney, Australia

Best use of colour prize

  • CODA Studio – Karratha Superclinic / Karratha, Australia
  • Iredale Pedersen Hook Architects – Fitzroy Crossing Renal Hostel / Fitzroy Crossing, Australia
  • Iredale Pedersen Hook Architects – Elizabeth Quay Gelato Kiosk / Perth, Australia
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