About the Czech Architecture Award
The Czech Architecture Award’s primary aim is to present architecture to the wider public. A competitive showcase of the best in Czech architecture, the CAA not only highlights the aesthetic and technical quality of the nominated projects, but considers the context in which they have been built, their relationship to their surroundings and the social benefits they offer. Accordingly, the award is accompanied by a series of complementary events, taking place throughout the year and across all regions of the Czech Republic. Each June, a shortlist of 50 works will be announced to the public at the CAA nomination evening, which also features exhibitions and interventions in public space. The CAA’s international jury, made up of award-winning architects, will be introduced to the public via seminars, lectures and workshops.
About the Czech Chamber of Architects
The CCA is an autonomous professional body with transferred executive powers, established by Act No. 360/1992 Coll. As such, it is the official regulatory and authorisation body for professionally practising architects in the Czech Republic. The CCA is also responsible for the professional and ethical standards of architects in the Czech Republic. Since 2014, the Chamber is an official consultative body, proposing laws, legal adjustments and regulations related to the practice of architecture.
192 BUILDINGS SUBMITTED TO THE
CZECH ARCHITECTURE AWARD 2020
192 works have been submitted to the 5th annual Czech Architecture Award (CAA), an increase from last year. An international jury of experts will now review them and select a shortlist of nominees. The most prestigious awards, the Finalists of the CAA and the Main Award winner, will be announced on 24 November at a gala celebration. The winners of the Unique Achievement Award (nominated by the CCA Academy and the Award Working Group) and Partner Awards will also be announced.
Works completed between 2015 and 2019 were eligible for this year’s edition of the Czech Chamber of Architects’ annual competitive showcase. More than half of all submitted projects (108) were completed within the last year, and fourth-fifths were completed within the last two years (153). As in previous years, new constructions outnumbered renovations and account for approximately three-fifths of the submitted projects (117). Residential housing remains an important topic in Czech architecture again this year, even if the number of residential buildings submitted continues to gradually decrease. Family homes, apartment buildings, residential complexes, cottages and second homes make up two-fifths of this years’ entrants (77). A catalogue of all submitted works is freely available on the CAA website.
Private investment dominates, public projects include works from design competitions
Private investors account for more than two-thirds of the submitted projects (133). However the number of public procurement projects rose this year (59). As usual, more renovations are to be found in this category; this year, they account for almost half of those submitted (29). Five projects submitted to this year’s competition emerged from architecture competitions sanctioned by the Czech Chamber of Architects (down from last year’s seven). They include: the Jan Palach Memorial in Všetaty / MCA atelier (competition held in 2016), Fire Station and Technical Services Building, Líbeznice / EHL & KOUMAR ARCHITEKTI (competition held in 2017), Amos Primary School for Psáry and Dolní Jirčany / SOA architekti (competition held in 2013), New Town Hall for Prague 7 / Atelier bod architekti (competition held in 2016) and Archeopark Mikulčice / M&P Architekti – Landscape Architecture (competition held in 2009).
One-third of works implemented in Prague
Of the submitted works, one-third were completed in Prague (58), representing a drop in numbers after last year’s increase. The Czech Republic’s second-largest city, Brno, also saw fewer submissions, producing only three of this year’s submitted projects. Of the regions, Central Bohemia was the clear leader in the number of projects entering the competition, as was also the case last year (36 in 2020, as opposed to “only” 27 in 2019). In total, two-thirds of the submissions were implemented in the regions.
Residential projects account for nearly half of all submissions
Typologically speaking, two-fifths of the submitted buildings (77) are residential projects, as was the case last year. The remaining three-fifths are made up of a wide variety of works, including administrative and office buildings (21), schools and educational facilities (18), public places (12), cultural and social facilities (9), retail and service buildings (9), hotels and restaurants (9), public buildings (7), health facilities (6), transport buildings (6), observatories and lookouts (5), sports facilities (4, as opposed to last year’s 9) or sacred buildings (4), but also small scale constructions.
Implementation takes three years on average
It is interesting to note that the average length of time for implementation (from design to completion) of this year’s submissions was just over three years.
International jury of experts
The architects’ work will again be judged by an international panel of seven renowned experts. Members include:
Landscape architect, urban planner and academic Henri Bava (France), co-founder of the Agence Ter studio, working in Paris, Karlsruhe, Shanghai and Los Angeles. Bava’s work combines the fields of architecture, urbanism and landscape architecture in varied projects including parks, public spaces, land-use planning and urban planning.
Architect Alessandra Cianchetta (United Kingdom) is based in London and Paris. Practising from her own studio, she works on projects in the fields of architecture and urbanism, with a particular interest in the regeneration of urban areas and cultural and administrative buildings. Cianchetta is also active in the academic sphere.
Architect Jeanne Dekkers (Netherlands) leads her own studio in Delft, specialising in a wide range of projects, including designs for educational institutions, residential buildings, interior design (including furniture design), and land-use planning. Dekkers is very active in professional and academic circles and also publishes widely.
Architect and theoretician Gillian Horn (United Kingdom) currently focuses on higher education and research and is a significant contributor to the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) magazine. For 15 years she was partner of Penoyre & Prasad, a design-led practice recognised with many design and sustainability awards.
Architect Csaba Nagy (Hungary) works in his own studio, Archikon Architects, on diverse projects including renovations and new constructions of public, commercial, residential and industrial buildings. He is currently an executive board member of the Association of Hungarian Architects.
Architect Štefan Polakovič (Slovakia) is co-founder of GutGut, whose buildings have been recognised in Slovakia with the ARCH Award, the Dušan Jurkovič Award and four CE-ZA-AR Awards for Architecture. Polakovič is also the co-founder of the successful Bratislava festival DAAD.
Architect Jeroen van Schooten (Netherlands) is founding partner of the leading Dutch studio Team V Architecture, based in Amsterdam. He is also actively involved with a number of professional associations.
Works submitted by their authors or nominated by experts
Works could be submitted to the competition by architects themselves, or by members of the Czech Architecture Award’s Academy. Previously submitted works were eligible, with the exception of those that have previously advanced to the nomination stage. This year’s submission process saw more architects take advantage of the option to resubmit. A forthcoming catalogue of nominees, as well as regional exhibitions, will offer more detailed information on individual projects.
A list of submitted buildings, including photographs, may be found on the CAA website.
Access all press releases issued by the Czech Chamber of Architects on www.cka.cz in the section PRO MÉDIA.