The RIBA President’s Awards for Research promote and celebrate the best of research in the field of architecture and the built environment that contributes to new knowledge and understanding in architecture. The design projects were chosen from this year’s record-breaking 75 submissions from 144 countries.
The projects focused on seeking constructive ways of using architecture and urban design to mend the fragmented landscape in Palestine through the principles of ‘stitching’ and ‘empowering’. It explores spatial possibilities while also demonstrating the links between building and socio-economic regeneration, as a way to address issues of conflict and cultural identity.
Senior lecturers Dr Nasser Golzari and Dr Yara Sharif stated: “We are very delighted that the projects have been awarded RIBA’s President Award for Research 2016 - Commendation Award. This is a manifestation that these types of multi-dimensional design projects within a complex context, addressing cultural and socio-political issues, can be recognised along with its creative and imaginative edge and attention to details.
“This is also a reward for the University of Westminster’s Department of Architecture which supports a triangle of this kind where an architectural practice like NG Architects, academic research like PART and a design studio has been successfully integrated."
The panel of judges commented about the project: "This is a fascinating piece of work that bridges anthropology and urbanism, political and cultural studies, and operates on a design and build level.
“It is a complex and multi-dimensional project that employs an imaginative and well-established research-from-practice initiative exploring how best to regenerate and 'heal' fragmented places and communities in the Palestine/Israeli borders. This is an important and non-romantic examination that has been delivering interesting results and has generated momentum."
The University of Westminster is one of the UK's leading centres for the study of Architecture and the Built Environment inspiring more than 2,000 students at its teaching base at Marylebone, in central London.