WAF shortlist highlights the best new architecture in the world


Big, small, expensive and affordable – almost every type of building imaginable features in this year’s World Architecture Festival (WAF) shortlist. Composed of 420 buildings from all over the world, it is a superb opportunity to take stock of the current state of architecture.

WAF 2022 is being held from November 30 to December 2 in Lisbon, Portugal, and is once again becoming an in-person event after the global COVID-19 pandemic caused the previous two years to be online-only. The theme this year is “Together”.

“The number and quality of entries this year has been very encouraging, and we look forward to meeting in person to judge the categories and then our top prizes,” said WAF Program Director Paul Finch. “WAF, the outstanding live event in the world of architecture, celebrates its 15th anniversary in 2022. We are delighted to host the event in the beautiful city of Lisbon and look forward to reconnecting with our fellow architects and designers from all over the world. world.”

Below we highlight a few standout designs that caught our eye, but be sure to head to the gallery to see a selection of the 420 buildings provided by WAF. We’ll be back later in the year to report on the big winner.

BEEAH Group Headquarters was designed by Zaha Hadid Architects and is located in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates. Energy-efficient office space is designed to look like an oversized sand dune

Hufton + Raven

Located in the rugged desert landscape of Al Sajaa, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates, Beeah’s headquarters was designed by the late Zaha Hadid herself and features a curved concrete exterior inspired by the surrounding sand dunes.

The building has several sustainability features to reduce its energy consumption, such as solar power and water recycling systems, and is also designed to mitigate summer heat. It is arranged around a central courtyard which helps naturally ventilate the interior and features carefully placed glazing to prevent solar heat gain.

Depot Boijmans Van Beuningen was designed by MVRDV and is located in Rotterdam, the Netherlands.  The unusual building is billed as the world's first fully accessible art repository
Depot Boijmans Van Beuningen was designed by MVRDV and is located in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. The unusual building is billed as the world’s first fully accessible art repository

Ossip van Duivenbode

MVRDV’s Depot Boijmans Van Beuningen in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, is described by the company as the world’s first publicly accessible art depot. It offers visitors a glimpse into the world of art preservation and restoration, with 63,000 paintings, photographs, films, design objects, contemporary art installations and sculptures, as well as 88,000 prints and drawings on display.

The building itself takes the form of an oversized mixing bowl and is finished in 1,664 mirrored glass panels. It is also topped by a small public park and includes sustainability features, such as solar panels and rainwater harvesting systems, to reduce its draw on the grid.

Source: WAF


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