Every two years, the Corobrik-SAIA Award for Excellence recognises exceptional contributions to the field of architecture. The best of South Africa’s architectural talent was acknowledged for their talent and skill at the 2013/14 Corobrik-SAIA Awards of Excellence and Merit at a gala dinner at the ICC Durban on Friday, 1 August.
Presented by Corobrik and the South African Institute for Architects (SAIA), the awards represent the highest accolade that can be awarded to a building in the country.
The institute this year bestowed both an award of merit, and an award of excellence for //Hapo, Freedom Park, collected by project architect Dieter Brandt, and MMA director Mphethi Morojele.
Eight Awards of Excellence, 14 Awards of Merit and two Special Commendations were bestowed on the architects responsible for 24 projects selected from 49 entries from eight SAIA regions. The winning projects ranged from residential units and public buildings to the restoration of heritage sites and an academic research project.
“This year’s winners talked not only to materiality, programmatic requirements, the employment of resources and the application of socio-cultural debates,” says SAIA president Sindile Ngonyama. “They also engaged and articulated the day-to-day intellectual and topical discourse of our ever-changing biophysical environment.”
The awards dinner was attended by 220 people including dignitaries from the Department of Public Works (DPW), eThekwini Municipality and other government departments within the built environment; executives from related voluntary associations; the registrar of the SA Council for the Architectural Profession (SACAP); board members, regional secretaries and members of SAIA; Corobrik executives; UIA office-bearers; members of the media; and heads of schools of architecture nationally.