Architectural Student Design Competition highlights growing influence of Passivhaus
Published: 01st June 2012
The final of the Saint-Gobain Isover Architectural Student Design competition has taken place in Bratislava, with 60 teams from 21 countries battling it out to win a top prize of €1,500.
Now in its eighth year, the competition invites architecture students from around the world to design a building or development in accordance with the Saint-Gobain Isover Multi-Comfort House concept. This endorses and builds on Passivhaus principles, combining excellent acoustic comfort with superb internal air quality, fire protection and safety to give enhanced living comfort. It can be applied to any building style and is suitable for use in both new and retrofit construction.
Previous briefs have included a hotel, school, office and multi-use skyscraper. The 2012 contest required students to create a sustainable community living plan for around 12 to 15 families, located in Nottingham’s Trent Basin on the border between the city and the industrial zone. Teams were asked to take into account social and economic aspects, as well as constructional considerations, to design a sustainable neighbourhood in keeping with the local surroundings.
Over 100 universities from countries including the USA, Spain, Poland and Russia took part in the competition, with just 60 teams selected to go through to the international final, including the three winning UK entries chosen at this year’s Ecobuild.
Students travelled to Bratislava to present their concepts to an expert panel of judges, which included ?ubomír Závodný from the Faculty of Architecture at the Slovak Technical University, Jean-Baptiste Rieunier from Saint-Gobain Isover Research and Roland Matzig, founder of R-M-P Architects and Engineers which consulted on the renovation of the world’s only Passivhaus skyscraper built to date.
Competition was fierce and after much deliberating the judges revealed the three winners. Teams from Belarus and Lithuania won second and third prizes respectively, while the overall winning design of the competition was produced by Tamara Kuljanin and Nemanja Kocic from the University of Belgrade in Serbia.
Helen Tunnicliffe, marketing manager for Saint-Gobain Isover said: “Over 1,000 students from around the world took part in this year’s competition. I would like to thank all the UK students and universities who entered, particularly the three UK winners who represented our country in the international final.
“The standard of entries in this year’s final was extremely high and demonstrates the growing emphasis universities are placing on sustainable design. The competition offers students a valuable opportunity to apply their knowledge to a real-life scenario and present their concepts to a team of international experts and I would urge all RIBA accredited universities to take part.”