The Mies Crown Hall Americas Prize (MCHAP) – the continent’s newest biennial architecture accolade – returns for its second edition and to announce its much anticipated winners for the 2014/2015 cycle. That nod goes to Grace Farms in Connecticut, by Japanese architectural powerhouse SANAA.
Selected by a jury of architects, editors and academics – who scoured the continent for the best built works of the past two years – Grace Farms had to fend off competition from five worthy contenders: Angelo Bucci’s Weekend House in São Paulo, Brazil; Grafton Architects’ UTEC Campus in Lima, Peru; the Pachacamac Museum by Llosa Cortegana in Lima, Peru; Alberto Kalach’s Tower 41 in Mexico City; and Michael Maltzan’s Star Apartments in Los Angeles, USA. The Fort York Visitor Centre by Patkau Architects and Kearns Mancini Architects, Toronto, Canada was also originally considered for the shortlist, but the jury later decided to delay its nomination to the next cycle – 2016/17 – 'to allow for the commencement of its programming and for the maturation of its landscape and integration into the surrounding neighborhood'.
SANAA's Pritzker Prize-winning founders, Kazuyo Sejima and Ryue Nishizawa, were presented with the award by Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel, David Kohler and Phyllis Lambert at a dedicated benefit dinner in Chicago earlier tonight.
Launched by Wiel Arets – the Illinois Institute of Technology's College of Architecture Dean – in 2013, the award aims to not only promote and encourage great architecture from that specific part of the world, but also to nurture a network of architects, academics and schools across North, Central and South America.
The Prize’s winner is announced biannually in conjunction with MCHAP.emerge, the platform’s corresponding biennial prize for the best built work from an emerging architecture practice. The honour this year went to Pavilion on the Zocalo in Mexico City, by local architecture studio Productora, revealed during a symposium in spring 2016.
The newly established MCHAP student prize is also part of today's celebrations, awarded to (a)typical office by Tommy Kyung-Tae Nam and Yun Yun from the Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning at the University of Michigan.