Each year BusinessWeek joins with Architectural Record, a sister publication at The McGraw-Hill Companies (MHP ), to run a contest that rewards exceptional architecture around the world. The contest goes beyond the usual aesthetics applauded in most architectural awards programs. Sponsored by the American Institute of Architects, the BusinessWeek/Architectural Record Awards program includes both architects and businesspeople on the jury. It is one of the toughest contests to win, requiring a series of precise metrics on how architecture is used to solve specific client problems.
Britomart Transport Center
General Mills World Headquarters
Israeli Foreign Ministry
Humane Society/SPCA San Antonio/Bexar
Limerick County Hall
Iron Studio, Penland School of Crafts
Finn Center, School of Music & Arts
Ehime Prefectural Budokan
James M. Wood Community Center
Fisher Pavilion at Seattle Center
Marion Oliver McCaw Hall
FDNY Fire Zone
Brentwood Skytrain Station
San Francisco Ferry Building
Ford Rouge Center
Toronto Hospital New Clinical Service Bldg
This year, BusinessWeek is trying something new. It is writing up not only many of the winners but also several of the finalists. We felt our readers would have a special interest in how General Mills Inc. (GIS ) expanded its world headquarters to integrate a new acquisition, Pillsbury, into its strong corporate culture. Designing the new Quintessa Winery in St. Helena, Calif., so that it fits smoothly into the beautiful surrounding Napa Valley vineyards is an intriguing tale. And so is saving an historic building in Washington, D.C., by retrofitting it into the modern Monaco Hotel. These are all stories of how architecture was used to achieve major business goals.
There was great diversity among the 10 winners and 9 finalists the jury chose to reward out of the 208 entries in 2004. We had a martial arts center, a transport hub, a foreign ministry, a homeless shelter, a museum, a hotel, a Humane Society building, and a winery. There were winners and finalists from the U.S., Canada, New Zealand, Japan, Israel, and Ireland.
All had a relationship between architect and client that solved problems. Jury Chair Moshe Safdie, principal at Moshe Safdie & Associates Inc., said the BusinessWeek/Architectural Record contest "is one of the few, if not the only, awards [program] that looks at [both] design and performance."
Here are some of the best.
By Bruce Nussbaum in New York