Innovation shines at 2014 World Architecture Festival Awards

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The winners of the 2014 World Architecture Festival Awards have been announced

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A community space in Vietnam, a memorial in China, and an arboretum in Australia – all highlight the impressive variety of innovative architecture on display at this year's World Architecture Festival Awards. Held over three days in the Marina Bay Sands Hotel, Singapore last week, the awards provide an opportunity to check out some top-tier projects from all corners of the world.

Category winners were announced on day one and two of the competition, with the third day reserved for six overall winners, which are outlined briefly below.

World Building of the Year

Vietnam's a21studio and its Ho Chi Minh City-based project the Chapel won top honors, and was granted the festival's coveted Best Building award. Constructed from recycled materials and built as cheaply as possible, the Chapel acts as a community space in an area of the city that's particularly lacking in such amenities. It's vibrant, cheap, and genuinely serves the community which surrounds it.

World Landscape of the Year

Australia's National Arboretum Canberra took the top landscape prize. The center comprises 100 forests of endangered tree species from around the world, situated on a site measuring 250 hectares (618 acres) that was formerly blighted by fire back in 2001 and 2003. The site was designed by Taylor Cullity Lethlean and architects Tonkin Zulaikha Greer.

Future Project of the Year

The Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, by 5468796 Architecture and number TEN architectural group, won the Future Project of the Year award. The proposal seeks to create a new gallery in British Columbia, Canada, in order to house an extensive art collection currently residing in an old mansion. The new gallery is a striking concept, featuring large glass walls and an exterior of wooden "quills" which cantilever from a structural mesh.

Small Project of the Year

The Pinch, by Xianxing Town Government China Department of Architecture and The University of Hong Kong, came out top of this category. The project consists of a library and community center in Shuanghe Village, Yunnan Province, China, and makes up part of a large reconstruction effort in the area, following a major earthquake in September, 2012.

Wood Excellence Prize

The festival's Wood Excellence Prize, which recognizes buildings constructed primarily using wood, went to DSDHA for its Alex Monroe Studio (which also recently drew attention from RIBA). The studio features a handmade facade and its supporting structure was made entirely of prefabricated structural timber panels.

Color Prize

Austria's Departments of Law and Central Administration in the University of Economics and Business, by Cook Robotham Architectural Bureau won the Color Prize – which awards buildings with a particularly colorful exterior. The recently-completed pair of buildings certainly fit the bill and were praised by the judges, who stated that the project "demonstrates how learning institutions should be fun and inspiring. This project used color with energy and total conviction throughout."

Head to the gallery to check out the rest of the architectural eye-candy.

View gallery - 48 images

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