WAFX Winners 2017

The WAFX Prize is awarded to future projects that identify key challenges that architects will need to address in the coming years and was created as part of the World Architecture Festival's 10th anniversary celebrations in 2017 (WAF 10 Manifesto), where 11 winning future projects which address the Manifesto issues were entered for the prize. Key challenges spanned diverse topic areas, including climate, energy & carbon, water, ageing and health, re-use, smart cities, building technology, cultural identity, ethics, power and justice.

The WAFX Prize, sponsored by GreenCoat© heralds the world’s most forward-looking architectural concepts and in 2017 the Hydroelectric Canal by Paul Lukez Architecture was announced the overall winner and category winner of the Climate, Energy & Carbon.

After extensive deliberation, the festivals directors have selected The Hydroelectric Canal by Paul Lukez Architecture as the overall winner and winner of the Climate, Energy & Carbon prize for its innovative approach to shaping economic and environmentally resilient self-sustaining communities. Paul Lukez Architecture will be presented with a trophy at the Gala Dinner hosted in the Postbahnhof in Berlin on the 17th November. The Hydroelectric Canal addresses the complex challenge of rising sea levels. PLA together with a multidisciplinary team are working on a scheme to harness the energy from the rising tides in low lying urban areas. The communities will be able to draw clean energy through advanced hydroelectric systems which will generate power from the tidal changes.

See below for all category winners: 

Floating Ponds by Surbana Jurong Consultants has been awarded winner of the Water prize. This projects’ systemic integration of water, nutrients and energy leads to a concept which enables the creation of a self-sustained and closed loop farming eco-system. Floating Ponds omits the traditional dependency on land and will enable rapidly expanding and densifying cities to build resilience through a creative use of space and water.

Energie- ud Zukunftsspeicher im Energiepark Heidelberg by LAVA Berlin and schlaich bergermann partner is the winner of the Building Technology prize. This animated energy tower reinvents a 1950s - tank typology into a hub of sustainability; both a renewable energy storage and an educational destination for renewable energy. The external façade is animated by over 20,000 diamond shaped steel plates, the number of moving plates will indicate the number of households supplied by the renewable energy stored in the tower.

Organisers decided to award the Smart Cities prize to three distinct entries - Media City by Gad Architecture, Oresund City – a new European metropolis by 2030 by Sweco Architects AB, and Jakarta Jaya: The Green Manhattan by SHAU. Media City will be a vibrant and engaging habitat where people can witness the design, production and application of virtual reality and multimedia products as well as being a beacon for future smart city strategies. Sweco Architects entry is based on the vision of using a new archipelago to join Copenhagen and Malmo to form an entirely new city: Oresund City. Jakarta Jaya: The Green Manhattan by SHAU is a proposal for multitude of ecological and social projects combined to form one sustainable city at Jakarta Bay.

Södra Skanstull by White Arkitekter winner of the ageing and health prize. White Arkitekter has developed a new masterplan for Sodra Skanstull, an area located in the south of Stockholm. The focal point of the scheme is a new diagonal boulevard for pedestrians and cyclists, which makes use of an old railway route, and improves public movement through the area. White’s proposal shows how creating walkability is at the heart of building a people centred sustainable city of the future.

Whitmore Community Food Hub Complex: Building Community around Food by University of Arkansas Community Design Center has been awarded the Ethics prize. Besides providing processing and distribution support for an underserved agricultural community, the 400,000 sqft Whitmore Food Hub serves additional community needs such as agricultural workforce housing, retail, local business incubation, and cultural tourism.

Lagos's Wooden Tower by Hermann Kamte & Associates winner of the Cultural identity prize. This proposal aims to create a new generation of the city of Lagos, above the existing urban fabric. The Lagos wooden tower is built with a high resistance LVL timber system and stands out as a residential tower that acts as a smart and sustainable monument to the city.


I LOVE NYDALEN by SAAHA AS is the winner of the Re-use prize. SAAHA AS’s proposal maps out how the historic industrial buildings in the Nydalsveien 32B area of Oslo can be preserved and redeveloped with housing, to enable active and vibrant city life.  The centre of the district will be transformed into a greenhouse, a common and shared space for both residence and the general public.

Revolution 4.0 by Abdullah Ahmed N AlDabbous has been selected as the winner of the Power and Justice prize. The project utilises of Cairo’s unused urban spaces such as motorway flyovers) to provide both learning and opportunities for advancement for street children. This project aims to engage with the street children, who have become part of Cairo’s social and spatial structure, as positive economic assets rather than liabilities.

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