Joint winners celebrate the first ever WAN Effectiveness Awards announced at MIPIM

Thursday 10th March marked the announcement of the first ever winners of the World Architecture News Effectiveness Awards. The winners were disclosed at MIPIM, Cannes, the world's premier event for real estate professionals.
The WAN Effectiveness Awards, in partnership with global multidisciplinary engineering consultancy Buro Happold, is the first major international competition of its kind, aiming to find the best in architectural design that has profoundly impacted society, transcending the requirements of the client brief and aesthetic appeal. Entrants were asked to demonstrate the ways in which their building has benefited its users, the surrounding community and beyond, in relation to one or more of the following aspects: Social, Technological, Environmental, Economic and Productivity.

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Bank Headquarters - Doha, Qatar
Floor area :100 000 m sq

This is unusual 500 m tower intended for the capital of Qatar makes a distinct reference to Islamic tradition in spite of its radical frm. As the architects exdplain, " The design concept for the bank headquarters embodies the Islamic belief that the earth and the universe are interconnected. The design draws its inspiration from the night sky and is a representation of the cosmos. Using computer aided technology, the ancient two-dimensional Islamic geometric pattern is transformed into a modern building. The points of the constellation are joined in three dimensions and a new model for the bank of the future is created. " Located near the city's tourist sites and the future Education City, the building is obviously meant to be iconic or symbolic of the new directions of the Emirate and of its bank in this instance. A large angular water feature with kinetic sculpture is planned for the plaza near the building on the south side. The theme of the cosmos is developed in numerous aspects of the design including landscape lighting intended to represent the nebular and the galaxy. The tower itself is conceived as alink between the sea and the sky, with a bright light at its apex shinning like a new star over Qatar.
Burj Al-Arab - Dubai, UAE
Height : 321 m
Client : Jumeirah

Located 15 km south of the city of Dubai, the Burj Al-Arab is part of the Jumeirah Beach Resort that also includes the Jumeirah Beach Hotel and Wild Wadi Water Park. Built on man made island set 280 m offshore in the Arabian Gulf, at a height 321m the building is the tallest hotel building in the world. The iconic sail shape of the structure has led it to be photographed frequently and it has in some sense become the symbol of the rapid and spectacular development of Dubai. The unusual location of the building led to the necessity of driving piles 40 m into the seabed. the sail facade features a double-skinned, Teflon-coated, woven glass-fiber screen. Despite its substantial height, the Burj Al-Arab is 28 duplex stories high. It is topped by a helipad. The Burj Al-Arab contains 202 duplex suites ranging from 170 sq m to 780 sq m in size. A panoramic 140 seat restaurant, the Al-Muntaha (ultimate or highest), is set 200 m above the sea. The core of the hotel is an open 180 m atrium. A number of water features, such as the 20 000 liter Ellipse waterfall on the entry roundabout, or sudden bursts of water shooting 42 m upwards in the atrium, contribute to the overall effect of extra vagance. 30 different type of marble cover a total of 24 000 sq m in the hotel, and no less than 8 000 sq m of 22 carat gold leaf were used in the interior designs. The luxury of the design and the nature of its accomodations originally led in promoters to bill it as the world first seven stars hotel.


Dancing Towers - Abu Dhabi, UAE
Area : 51748 m sq
Client : Capital Investment.

The difficulty presented by this project had to do with its large size as compared to relatively small neighboring building in the heart of Abu Dhabi. Essentially design for furnished apartment (18 315m sq) and an office tower (28 826 m sq), the structure will also contain a small amount of retail and recreational space (4 607 m sq), basically divided into commercial and residential towers connected by a retail podium. Although the division into two towers was a partial response to the question of the relationship to the existing neighborhood, the tight site suggested the undulating forms of the buildings. The architects explain, " The two towers quickly lean, rotate, bend and warp to respond to each other, the adjacent sites and ultimately the view to ocean at the horizon. These two figures fluidly respond to each other, dynamically engaged and flowing-ultimately tied together in a passionate dance. " Although unexpected forms have become the norm in the UAE in the course of their recent rapid urban development, these building retain the same elegance shown by Andrew Bromberg and Aedas for the Pentominium also published here.


Maritime Museum - Abu Dhabi , UAE
Floor Area : 33 300 m sq
Client : Tourism Development and Investment Company of Abu Dhabi
Planned on Saadiyat Island off the coast of Abu Dhabi, exposed concrete finish. 108 meters long, 36 meters wide and 27 meters high dominating 61 000 sq m julting out into water of Arabian Gulf. The structure to symbolize the meeting of Abu Dhabi's water and land The basic volume is meant to give the impression that it has been carved from a solid mass by the wind, while the surrounding landscape is organised in a grid pattern. Rows of the trees mark the transition from the future city on Saadiyat Island and the calmer, more contemplative architure of Ando.The maritime theme of the structure is developed inside, as the architect explain, " within the ship-like interior of the volume, ramps and floating decks guide visitors fluidly through the exhibition space, echoing the theme of the museum and creating a dynamic galery experience. Dhows float over the voids of nterior space and help create an intense visual experience by relating objects to one another and to the museum architecture as a whole. Below ground, there is a second space that placed reception hall with an enormous aquarium. The traditional  dhow floats over the aquarium and is seen from different perspectives.