More than 220 universities from 32 countries participated in a project to transform a district of Warsaw in Poland
Saint-Gobain has awarded the prizes for the 17th edition of its international “Architecture Student Contest”. The challenge of this edition, organized in close collaboration with the municipality of Warsaw, was to design a project aimed to revitalize an area located next to the Warszawa Wschodnia (Warsaw East) railway station, by working simultaneously on the performance as well as the architectural, environmental and social aspects.
This involved the design of a new student residence and new housing as well as a meeting and entertainment center in an old factory building which has been classified in the historical heritage of the city.
The objective of the contest is to develop a project with a positive impact on both, the individuals and the planet. The buildings have to be highly energy-efficient and as circular as possible, with low carbon emissions during their whole life cycle. At the same time, they have to contribute to the well-being of its occupants by creating healthy and comfortable living spaces.
“I was impressed by the high quality of the projects which were presented by the students this year. Not only from an architectural perspective but also regarding the integration of environmental and societal challenges. It was not easy for the jury to choose the winners. I am very happy and proud that Saint-Gobain can give visibility to this new generation of architects that is fully in line with our purpose: “Making the World a better home” declared Benoit BAZIN, CEO of Saint-Gobain.
The jury was very impressed by the high quality of the projects proposed by the students. Year after year, the level of the projects has increased and now environmental aspects are fully integrated into the students’ thinking, without forgetting the eminently social function of architecture.
The jury unanimously praised a project of very high architectural, technical, environmental and social quality. The highly original architecture is nevertheless particularly well integrated into its immediate environment. It offers an astonishing wealth of perspectives thanks to the contrast between the façades. The articulation of the buildings is conducive to the development of a real student community. The use of renewable solar energy is well incorporated into a highly energy-efficient and circular building. The proposed renovation of the old factory preserves the authentic character of this city’s historical heritage object.
This project, which is also perfectly integrated into its environment, develops a very special, original and warm atmosphere thanks to the materials chosen, both for the exterior and the interior spaces. The project remains on a human scale and responds particularly well to the needs of all its publics, whether the occupants of the buildings or the inhabitants of the neighborhood; it stands out for the balance found between the built and natural elements and the smart taking into account of environmental considerations.
This project integrates very well into its environment both aesthetically and by its physical openness to the neighborhood. Designed to facilitate the life of the student community with a special focus on sports activities, the project allows for easy access from all sides to an attractive green park, including original solutions to reduce air pollution.
The jury particularly appreciated the narrative developed by the students around their project, establishing an interesting link between the history of Poland, the circularity and the location of the project. The project has a very particular aesthetic, yet manages to integrate well into the environment, particularly through the easy circulation to and from the site.
Created in 2004, this competition, aimed primarily at architecture, engineering and design students, is designed to highlight the expertise of students around a project based on the real needs of a neighborhood or city, using Saint-Gobain’s sustainable construction approach to create living spaces that respect the planet and the well-being of residents. For the first time, the students calculated the environmental impacts by using a life cycle analysis tool provided by our partner OneCLickLA.
News courtesy of Saint-Gobain