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An aquatic centre, a wine-tasting room and university lecture theatres built in the 1970s are among 23 projects to be recognised in the 2020 Southern Architecture Awards.
The winners also included 15 residential projects, most of them around Queenstown and Wanaka.
The buildings demonstrate the breadth of work undertaken by architects in the southern branch of the New Zealand Institute of Architects, which covers Otago, including Central Otago and Queenstown Lakes district, and Southland.
Jury convener Queenstown architect Stacey Farrell said it was refreshing to see so many projects pushing boundaries and embracing new technologies.
"Architects, clients and builders are demonstrating that we need to go over and above minimum requirements of thermal comfort and sustainability."
The Wanaka Watersports Facility, designed by Alistair Madill Architects, and the Koura Apartments in Queenstown, by Johnston Architects, were winners in the commercial category. At the watersports facility, a "richly textured and contoured facade" belied the tough functional requirements demanded by a project built in a sensitive environmental zone, the jury said. Meanwhile, the Koura apartments stood out in a town of numerous short-term rental options. On the striking frontages, translucent sheets transmitted movement and vitality, adding life to the streetscape.
It demonstrated how a simple and affordable design coupled with a "refreshingly ambitious spirit" could deliver a laudable outcome for a business client, the jury said. "Even outside opening hours, the restaurant communicates vibrant appeal."
The other winner in the hospitality section, the Te Kano Estate tasting room at Bannockburn, by Mason and Wales Architects, was "an elegantly rendered outcome to a complex brief".
"Container buildings often betray their legacy but here the architectural team has overcome inherent constraints to produce a design tour de force that provides the clients with an iconic built form within the stunning landscape."
Two awards were made in the enduring architecture category, which recognises buildings at least 25 years old. The University of Otago Archway Lecture Theatres, designed by Ted McCoy of McCoy and Wixon Architects in 1974, had endured for nearly half a century and still stood out as architecture that was different and special, the jury said.
"Fluted concrete panels and external spiral stairs speak to a moment in our architectural history but the building remains an accomplished work of significant merit."
Other awards went to:
Housing: AQA Alessandro Quadrelli Architetto, Assembly Architects (two projects), Condon Scott Architects, Mason and Wales Architects, Pac Studio, Parsonson Architects, Team Green Architects, Three Sixty Architecture.
Alterations and additions: Anna-Marie Chin Architects.
Multi-unit: Hofmans Architects.
Interior architecture: Fearon Hay Architects, Parker Warburton Team Architects (two projects).
Small project architecture: Assembly Architects, Hofmans Architects, Rafe Maclean Architects.
The Lake Hayes cottage which won Anna-Marie Chin Architects the housing (alterations and additions) category will feature in Inside Out on September 4.