'Designs Of The Year' 2015 Finalists Revealed


 Sydney’s One Central Park project designed by French architect Ateliers Jean Nouvel may achieve another award from London’s Design Museum for ‘Design of the Year’.

One Central Park was shortlisted among a total of fifteen architectural designs from around the world in the Designs of the Year awards.

According to

Dezeen magazine, the award honours design "that promotes or delivers change, enables access, extends design practice or captures the spirit of the year".

The project is set to transform Sydney’s Skyline with two landmark towers that comprise a residential apartment block of 34 stories and a 12-story apartment block that sits on a common retail and recreational podium.

Featuring in the plan is a vertical landscaped garden designed in collaboration with French artist and botanist Patrick Blanc that covers approximately 50 percent of the buildings' façade and is made from 35 different plant species, as well as a cantilevered mirror that tracks sunlight and directs it down into the mass of the building.

The project utilises hydroponic and heliostats control technology to create a greener design.

The project sits among other notable award nominees, many of which have a similar focus on green design.

Key finalists in the Architecture category include: 
1. Arena Do Morro, Natal, Brazil – Herzog & de Meuron

Herzog & de Meuron’s open-air gymnasium is the flagship project for the firm’s regeneration of the Mãe Luiza neighbourhood in Brazil.

The Arena do Morro gymnasium will replace an existing concrete playing field to incorporate more diverse community activities.

The design features a generous roof, which is constructed to allow light and air in but keep water out. The two ends of the elongated pitched roof open up towards the neighbourhood and invite people in.

"By rotating the blocks, different orientations of the fins create various levels of transparency as well as privacy," Herzog & de Meuron said in a statement.


2. Desert Courtyard House, Scottsdale, Arizona, USA – Wendell Burnett Architects

Wendell Burnett Architect’s project ‘Desert Courtyard House’ is the only private building included in the awards.

The project uses an ancient construction method of packed earth to create walls offering a high thermal mass.

The architects have made the structure spiral up from the lowest point at the southwest corner out towards a sunset view to create a direct relationship between the private house and the desert location.

3. Fondation Louis Vuitton, Paris, France – Frank Gehry and Gehry Partners

The Fondation Louis Vuitton

is a 'glass cloud' of 12 curved sails where music and art are curated.

The building's distinctive shape has been made using over three thousand curved and fritted glass panels.

It holds eleven exhibition galleries as well as a 350-seat auditorium, meeting spaces and education facilities.

4. House For Trees, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam – Vo Trong Nghia Architects

House for Trees is an effort by Vo Trong Nghia Architects

to return green spaces to Vietnam and reconnect cities to their jungle origins.

The project includes five concrete boxes are designed as 'pots' with trees planted on their tops and high-density dwellings situated within the base structure.

With thick soil layer, these pots also function as basins for storm-water retention.

5. Long Museum West Bund, Shanghai, China – Atelier Deshaus

Long Museum West Bund

adopts a cantilever structure that features an umbrella vault, visually echoing a nearby coal hopper unloading bridge and symbolising the area's industrial past.

The project builds upon and repurposes a two-year old underground parking garage on the site. The responds directly to its structural layout.

6. Markthal Rotterdam, Rotterdam, the Netherlands – MVRDV


is the first covered food market of the Netherlands. MVRDV’s design comprises 228 apartments, each with a view towards the historic Laurenskwartier or to the market through windows and sections of glass floor made of sound and smell proof triple glazing.

The design attempts to retain the feeling of an open market making the building as transparent as possible but protecting the interior from harsh weather.

The interior fetaures the mural 'Cornucopia' by artists Arno Coenen and Iris Roskam, which has a surface of 11.000 square metres and depicts produce from the market, while also creating a mass that limits noise pollution.

7. Sancaklar Mosque, Istanbul, Turkey – Emre Arolat Architects

This project focuses on the 'essence' of a religious space, distancing itself from discussions based on form.

The design aims to represent the purest forms of light and matter.

The disappearance of the building in to the slope of the site, anchored to the ground suggests that the building is a part of this landscape.

8. UC Innovation Center – Anacleto Angelini, Santiago, Chile – Elemental

In this design, Elemental

architects substituted the typical glass skin for a thermal mass on the building’s perimeter to avoid undesired heat gains.

Open-air squares are multiplied throughout the building's entire height and a permeable atrium core allows people to see what others are doing.

As well as creating the right environment for knowledge-creation, this design has reduced energy costs by two-thirds.

9. Waterbank Campus at Endana Secondary School, Laikipia, Kenya – PITCHAfrica

The aim of the Waterbank Campus project is to create buildings that harvest, store and filter rain while also providing a space for agricultural and environmental education as well as community activities like soccer in the semi-arid region.

The 'Waterbank Campus' occupies a 10 acre site integrating 4 acres of irrigated conservation agriculture with 7 unique, low-cost, rain harvesting building types developed by PITCHAfrica.

Each building has the capacity to harvest and store high volumes of water using extremely low cost construction and locally available skills and materials, providing a year round supply for poverty stricken regions.


For a full list of nominees for the Designs of the Year Awards, please click here.

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