Royal Hobart Hospital’s new emergency medicine department has taken out the state’s top prize for urban design at this year’s Royal Australian Institute of Architects (RAIA) Tasmania Architecture Awards.
Public hospitals are not generally memorable in terms of an arrival experience. The new Department of Emergency Medicine at Royal Hobart Hospital by Philp Lighton Architects, Crawford Padas Shurman Architects Designhaus and Health Science Planner Architects in Association, boldly reasserts the role of a major urban hospital in the public life of the city.
“The new emergency department is a fine example of how architecture and urban design, working together, can integrate major public buildings into the experience of the city,” said jury chair, Carey Lyon.
The award for Commercial Architecture went to the Aurora Operations Facility by Heffernan Button Voss (HBV) Architects. Aurora Operations Facility was additionally honoured with the Colorbond Steel Award for innovative use of steel.
Housing administrative offices, large-scale storage and logistics and an oil management depot, the jury noted that the Aurora facility is “a building of disarming simplicity hiding a complex program and challenging technical and structural requirements, with a lightness that belies its size and bulk. An innovative approach at all levels of design has transformed a prosaic industrial shed into an uplifting example of architecture, in service of a strictly utilitarian brief and program, to the obvious enjoyment and benefit of its users.”
HBV Architects picked up a further third award, for Residential - Multiple Housing for Ball and Chain Apartments, and a commendation for Sustainable Architecture for 2 Salamanca Square Redevelopment.
A simple retreat capturing and evoking a ‘shack’ culture at Swansea was presented with the award for Residential - New Architecture. Fish for Breakfast by 1+2 Architects was recognised by the jury for “its reflection of simple lifestyle, of intimate relationship with context, of economy of form and material, and its blending with the landscape - all are beautifully reinterpreted in this house”.
Also by 1+2Architects is Ian & Jean’s, a coastal home at Blackmans Bay which received a commendation for Residential - New Architecture.
Jury chair Carey Lyon said the jury was impressed by the overall standard of entries in this year’s architecture awards.
“There is clearly a growing local culture of architecture in the state, with both mature and younger practices submitting outstanding projects.
“Across the projects, there was also an attitude of experimentation, in which many of the projects were thought through from first principles, rather than through default responses,” Mr Lyon said.
An exhibition of all entries to this year’s Tasmania architecture awards is currently on display at Mawson Place Waterside Pavillion, Hobart, until May 31, before travelling to Launceston (June 27 - July 12) and Burnie (July 17-31).
See also full list of winners and jury citations.