Today, the European Commission and the Fundació Mies van der Rohe named the Szczecin Philharmonic Hall, by Barozzi Veiga, winner of the 2015 Mies van der Rohe Award—also known as the European Union Prize for Contemporary Architecture. The two organizations made the announcement of the biennial prize, which began in 1987, at the Mies van der Rohe Pavilion in Barcelona. The award, which consists of a cash prize of €60,000 (nearly $68,000), recognizes European projects for their conceptual, social, cultural, technical, and constructive achievements.
Completed in 2014, the Szczecin Philharmonic Hall in Poland was one of five finalists in a pool that included Antinori Winery by Archea Associati, the Danish Maritime Museum by Bjarke Ingels Group, London School of Economics Saw Swee Hock Student Centre by O’Donnell + Tuomey Architects, and Ravensburg Art Museum by Lederer Ragnarsdóttir Oei.
"This winning project finds a convincing formal and spatial strategy for a city which strives for a better future in a fast changing economy and social patterns, delivering a dignity to urban life and the same time enhancing the city’s specific historical identity with a contemporary 'monument,'" a spokesperson for the Fundació Mies van der Rohe said in a press release.
The European Commission and the Fundació Mies van der Rohe also awarded the Emerging Architect Prize to the Catalan studio Arquitectura-G for its design of Luz House, a single-family residence built into an existing structure in the Spanish town of Cilleros. "The jury felt that the designers understood well and solved brilliantly the constructive and economic constraints of the project, a new structure inserted in the stone party walls of an existing town house," a spokesperson for the Fundació Mies van der Rohe said in the release.
This year's jury included practicing architects Cino Zucchi (chair) of Cino Zucchi Architetti; Margarita Jover of Aldayjover Architecture and Landscape; Lene Tranberg of, Lundgaard & Tranberg; Peter L. Wilson of Bolles + Wilson; Li Xiangning, deputy dean of Tongji University’s College of Architecture & Urban Planning in Shanghai; Tony Chapman, head of awards at the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA); Hansjörg Mölk, CEO of MPreis; and non-voting members Ivan Blasi and Giovanna Carnevali, director of the Fundació Mies van der Rohe in Barcelona.