Six projects were recognised at this year’s Corobrik South African Institute of Architects (SAIA) Architectural Awards for Excellence.
The projects included the 70 000 m² Sasol Place in Sandton by Paragon Architects; a new residence in Constantia, Cape Town, by Malan Vorster Architecture, dubbed the ‘Tree House’; two memorials – the Delville Wood Memorial in Longueval, France and the Johannesburg Holocaust and Genocide Centre – as well as a lakeside residential development in KwaZulu-Natal; and a research publication.
The Delville Wood Memorial, designed by Creative Axis and Mayat Hart Architects, takes the form of a ‘trench-like slice into the earth’, honouring SA soldiers who lost their lives in a WWI battle nearby.
An oak-lined avenue leads to the memorial, the walls of which bear the names of the fallen soldiers. It is described as an exquisite piece of architecture that expresses and reflects on history and power.
‘In traveling to the sites of all short-listed entries, we have seen that sustainability and care for the environment has been prominent, with architects emphasising the nurturing of the environment,’ according to SAIA president Maryke Cronje.
‘There is a great use of natural and sustainable materials as well as consideration for the landscape.’