The third cycle of the Geoffrey Bawa Award for Excellence in Architecture was launched on 23rd July 2013 and award ceremony was held on 23rd July 2014, coincide with Geoffrey Bawa's 95th birth anniversary.
The entries were judged by an independent panel of judges appointed by the Geoffrey Bawa Trust.
Architect Ashok B. Lall, B.A. Cantab, AA Diploma, AIIA – Architect specializing in sustainable design based in New Delhi.
Prof. Chitra Wedikkara, President, Sri Lanka Institute of Architects, Managing Director– Chartered Architect/Quantity Surveyor Qserve (Pvt) Ltd.
Ms. Eugenie Mack, Trustee, Geoffrey Bawa Trust.
Deshamanya Prof. Radhika Coomaraswamy, Former Under Secretary General of the United Nations and Special Representative on Children and Armed Conflict.
IFRCS Community Center for Tsunami Affected Community in Matara by Archt. Chinthaka C. Wickramage – 2009
Amal & Himarsha House in Moratuwa by Archt. Sudesh Nanayakkara – 2012
Toll Plazas & Toll Gate office Buildings of Southern Expressway in Kottawa by Archt. Dr. Janaka Wijesundara – 2012
Guava House in Mawanella by Atcht. Ranjan Aluwihare – 2008
Architect's House by Archt. Chamila Alwis Weerasinge in Mattegoda – 2004
The Royal Bar & Hotel in Kandy by Archt. Yudish L. Ganesen – 2011)
Temple Pavilion at Kolonnawa by Archt. Palinda Kannangara – 2011
Kadju House in Tangalle by Archt. Pradeep Kodikara – 2007
Hatton National Bank Green Building in Nittambuwa – 2011
Architect Pradeep Kodikara, won the prestigious Geoffrey Bawa Award 2013/2014 for Excellence in Architecture, for his design "Kadju House" in Tangalle.
The re-design of the Royal Bar and Hotel in Kandy earned its architect, Yudish Ganesen, the runner-up trophy while Chamila Alwis Weerasinghe's design of his own home in Mattegoda. Ranjan Aluwihare's design of the Guava House in Mawanella, Kegalle received commendations.
GEOFFREY BAWA SPECIAL award 2014
Honorary Professor Dr. Ronald Lewcock and Emeritus Professor Dr. Senake Banadaranayke were awarded the Geoffrey Bawa Special Award 2014 for a Lifetime contribution to the Arts and Architecture.
The small community center aspires to fulfill a need to provide a space for community activities within a village that was affected by the Tsunami of 2004. The building is used for numerous activities such as academic instruction and community meetings. It is places within the premises of the village temple defacement to its preaching hall. The sitting, with its high gable-end facing the Bodhi Tree, is significant although this unfortunately is not reflected within the building.
The concrete frame structure celebrates clear modernist references and visually dominates the anesthetic of the building with exposed brick wall panels and a traditional timber and terra cotta tiles roof. Some of extensions made to it through, especially in the eave outside, seemed redundant. The pallete of materials used is very simple, but stands out amidst the line-washed buildings in the complex. The building is constructed on stilts off the ground, with a rhetorical reference to a traditional "tampita vihara", or image house on stilts, and consequently brings up issues particularly about cleaning and universal access into the building which should have been given due consideration.
The Toll Plazas on the new network of the expressways established a distinctive tone with their architecture. By choosing a singular design for all the expressway related structures, there is a definitive statement of style and consistency. The architect has specifically stated that the buildings are a reinterpretation of the building techniques of Sri Lanka in concert based on the traditional articulation of structural elements such as at the central shrine of the temple of the tooth. The services have been elegantly incorporated into the structures without too much fuss and the robust concert constructions allows for easy maintenance. Overall, the assembly of the structures expresses a sense of solidity and firmness as becoming of a gateway. The functions of tollbooths are well integrated within the overall design and a discrete use of air-conditioning. A lush roof garden that has been envisaged is yet to come to fruition and should add considerably to the final esthetic.
The tollgates celebrate the new expressways in a appropriate manner in the way they are well integrated with the landscape of the country in spite of their modest monumentality.
The Guava House is delicately poised at the crest of a hill amidst a grove of rubber trees in the western foothills in Hemmatagama near Mawanella. The design is organised around an axis which links a view of Bible Rock on the west and rolling rubber planted hills on the other. An entry and stair hall flanked by a bedroom and service area leads through a short corridor, itself flanked by the two principal bedrooms, into the main living space which is open in turn, to an arbor of trees and an infinity pool. This double height space on the gable end opens onto a pool deck with pergolas over part of it. A kitchen behind a bar and a dinning area under the pergola overlooking the pool and views over the plantation covered hills make it an attractive place to spend a relaxed vacation.
The Core of the structure is made from brick and a steel frame with the rest made from timber, with the timber framed thatched roof, the dominant element in the design. The rest if the spaces are inserted within the geometry brought about by the support for this roof structure. A mezzanine deck has been placed in the middle under the highest part of the roof. With wonderful views through the open gables at the two ends, the need to glaze them has fortunately does not allow for heat to escape. The extensive use of wood with a minimal use of brick, glass and steel, allows for the house to become more sustainable with a low embodied energy, although its actual cost is of concern. The use of different species of timer to different aesthetic and structural ends complements the overall aesthetic.
The modest house occupies a typical site of the Colombo suburbs. Built with extremely modest means by an architect, the house provides shelter and enjoyment for his family. This house is an easy in the use of sustainable construction while creating a dynamic everyday arena.
The main living space including the living room, dinning room and kitchen, are interconnected and all open into gardens and yards in both directions, giving good cross ventilation and keeping in touch with the thickly planted vegetation outside. Open double height spaces reaching up to the simple pitched roof making connections with the private upper level spaces and the sky, enhancing the feeling of openness in this otherwise restricted plot of land. A large pond occupies most the rare garden, brining in cool air that passes through the vertical spaces. High walls provide privacy from the neighbouring small houses surrounding the whole ensemble. Brick and cement are used alongside unpretentious cement floors with some decorative tiles embedded in it for colour and enjoyment, but sometimes detracts from the serenity of the spaces. These materials including the timber framed terra cotta tile roof, comprise a palette commonly used in such suburban houses and all locally available. The clever use of strategically placed steel grills had reduced the need for glazed windows. This makes the house a model of sustainability.
The careful conservation of the old Royal Bar and Hotel in Kandy is a good example of adaptive rehabilitation within the center of the old city. The existing building has been reused and converted into a respected establishment. Retaining the old bar opening off the street verandah and into the central courtyard, was and remains a regular watering hole for the public. The hotel itself is placed on the upper levels with a well-appointed restaurant and four traditional small rooms placed on this level added during the conservation. A small conference room and toilets are discretely on the far side of the central well-planted courtyard. All of the services remain on the ground floor and the small kitchens open into a small light well on a side.
All the material used in the conservation and renovation work are sympathetic to the building. The additions integrated them seamlessly with the existing with all the detailing following existing samples. Even new interventions such as the modest detail of adding height to the upper level handrail haven been sensitively made. The colours and textures of the paint and wood have been selected to reflect a high standard of general finishing and is a convincing examples of what can be done with old buildings in our cities.
With this temple pavilions at the Kolonnawa Raja Maha Vihare in a suburb, east of the Baseline Road in Colombo, the architect has designed a long open sided image house with two pavilions on either side. The structure is essentially a terra cotta shingled timber-framed roof help up on thin timber columns on heavy cement bases, reminiscent of a traditional "Ambalama". However, their geometry could have been given more consideration to prevent water from two of the roofs of the side pavilions falling directly into what is ostensibly the main entrance to the building. While the pavilions were intended to provide shelter for an existing Buddha statue with its back to the Bodhi Tree, these unfortunately block the view of the tree from the pilgrims worshipping the statue.
Not withstanding these issues, the building excludes serenity through its use of a palette of traditional materials including stone, wood, terra cotta and polished cement.
The Kadju House stands within a small plantation of Kadju (Annacardium Occidentale) after which it is named.
Approached from below, with the smell of the unseen ocean several hundred meters away, the house is an open pavilion straddling a wall on the left and a solid block of rooms on the right with a central opening looking through into more of the plantation. Arrival at the open sided living room with two bedrooms with wither side is past another bedroom and a kitchen placed behind the wall. A staircase leads up one side onto the upper-level pavilion originally glimpsed from the entry. The full revelation of this architectural promenade is made where a swimming pool is places above the first bedroom and kitchen area, drawing the gaze out to the magnificent view of the ocean in the direction from which the original approach was made. All the rooms are cross-ventilated and are comfortably appointed.
The structure finished with polished cement, is clearly articulated. The construction uses a palette of materials of brick plastered walls and polished cement floors to further define a sense of repose. A thoughtful and unique use of alternative materials such as cinnamon stick screens illustrates an awareness of local resources.
The Hatton National Bank branch in Nittambuwa is shaped by the large Ceylon Oak tree (Schleichera trijuga) that is on the site.
The design uses the shade from the tree to insulate the interior of the building from the excesses of direct sunlight while using an extensive amount of glass to fill the building with natural light. Even on a grey day, you do not need to switch on electric lights. This illumination is achieved through the extensive use of glass and steel as primary building materials. Yet, the air-conditioning requires a sophisticated system to control heat gain from the transparency, bringing into question the energy losses due to the use of such materials.
The spatial arrangement is competently handled and based on a central spine with a pitched roof of glass, which is indicative of the main circulation axis. While the primary banking halls are at the entrance and lead straight off the lobby, the axial circulation takes a customer inward and upwards to the private banking and vault paces at the rare. The design is intelligible to any visitor as a result of this central axial organisation and the whole building is visually transparent and light, projecting an image of accessibility and ease of during business.