Two Bangladeshi architectural projects were among the winners of the 2016 Aga Khan Award for Architecture, a statement from the globally-known charity says on Monday.
The Bangladeshi projects are a mosque in Dhaka and a community centre in Gaibandha.
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The monsoon rain may pose a problem as the openings for the hot air to escape also allow in rain. However, it is important to keep cross-ventilation even when it is raining, and the rain seems to have good drainage in the spaces where it enters Aga Khan Trust for Culture/Rajesh Vora
Presented once every three years, the award was established by the Aga Khan in 1977 to “identify and encourage building concepts that successfully addressed the needs and aspirations of communities in which Muslims have a significant presence.” The winners were announced on Monday in the United Arab Emirates city of Al Ain.
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The quality of space and architecture in this project proves that with the use of local materials and dedicated craftsmen, and an attempt towards spirituality through light can span the distance between here and infinity, between today and eternity Aga Khan Trust for Culture/Rajesh Vora
Praising the Bait Ur Rouf Mosque in Dhaka, developed by Marina Tabassum Architects, the award jury panel says: “In a transitional area caught between urban hyper-density and rural proximity, the terracotta mosque is an exquisitely proportioned building that is both elegant and eternal. Funded primarily by community donors, the mosque design challenges the status quo and understands that a space for prayer should elevate the spirit. The mosque does so through the creation of an interior space that is rich with light and shadow, but at the same time possesses a robust simplicity that allows for deep reflection and contemplation in prayer.”
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he ‘Ka’ Block contains the reception pavilion, offices, library, training/conference rooms and pavilions, a prayer space and a small ‘cha-shop’ Aga Khan Trust for Culture/Rajesh Vora
The jury panels describes the NGO Friendship’s training facility and community centre in Gaibandha, developed by Kashef Chowdhury and Urbana, as: “The integrative design approach is registered in every aspect of the project, and at every scale. The imbrication of outdoor and indoor spaces, together with the treatment of the roofscape, make this an unusual and innovative building. With its spaces sunk into the ground and the vegetation growing on its roofs, the compound blends beautifully into the natural surroundings. Its relationship to the landscape and to history and archeology is remarkable in every way.”
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The access to the building from the earthen bundh is organised via two entrance stairs at opposite ends. The programme is then organised around a series of pavilions, courtyards and reflecting pools. Aga Khan Trust for Culture/Rajesh Vora
Selected from a shortlist of 19 candidates, the winning projects will receive a $1m prize as they join an acclaimed list of previous winners, which includes buildings from Norman Foster, Charles Correa, Frank Gehry, Jean Nouvel and Hassan Fathy.
Watch: Winners of 2016 Aga Khan Award for Architecture winners