It is considered the Oscars of the architecture industry.
The World Architecture Festival 2015 took place at the Marina Bay Sands in Singapore on the 4–6 November, bringing together over 2,000 architects and designers for 3 days of presentations, debates and celebration. The event saw architects from the world’s top firms and emerging practices gathered together to present their designs, ranging from the incredible (buildings that float atop the ocean), to the outlandish (a skyscraper made from bamboo). This year, there were 31 competition categories and 338 entries.
The festival’s most prestigious prize, the coveted ‘World Building of the Year’ was awarded to the Interlace – an ambitious residential development in Singapore – by Netherlands-based Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA) and Buro Ole Scheeren from Germany.
The development, which was completed in 2013, is located on an elevated site covering eight hectares in the green lung of Southern Ridges of Singapore. It’s called a “vertical village” but stretches horizontally comprising 31 stacked apartment blocks, each six stories high and 70 metres long. Stacked in hexagonal arrangements around open courtyards that include swimming pools, the Interlace strives to create a “network of internal and external environments” that mixes shared and private outdoor spaces on multiple layers.
The complex houses 1,040 apartment units of various sizes spread across more than 1.8 million square feet. It has eight huge, open courtyards with rooftop sky gardens and terraces for both public and private use, while the apartments are carefully designed to ensure privacy of residents, creating an “intricate network of living and social spaces intertwined with the natural environment”. The Interlace is described as “one of the most ambitious residential developments” in the tropical island-state’s history.
The condominium has been lauded as a “trailblazer” by WAF director Paul Finch, who said that it “presents an alternative way of thinking about developments which might otherwise become generic tower clusters.” The festival’s judges were impressed by its unique concept, which offered an alternative for generic default tower clusters. The Interlace’s approach could help generate other possibilities through its versatility, by using the idea to have different building types or ownership patterns, or changing the dimension of the blocks.
Take a look at some of the other stunning architectural wonders from the World Architectural Festival 2015.
The World Architecture Festival awards ceremony has been held annually since its inception in 2008, and has been held in Singapore for the past four years. It will be held in Berlin next year.