RIBA London Building of the Year 2008

Samy Mansour
09 Jun 2008

Westminster Academy at the Naim Dangoor Centre by Allford Hall Monaghan Morris is the RIBA London Building of the Year 2008

Allford Hall Monaghan Morris is an avid RIBA Awards collector with 11 awards earned between 1997 and now. This year the practise is specially presented with the RIBA Building of the year award for the Westminster Academy at the Naim Dangoor Centre: a city academy for 1175 students planned around a linear atrium on a challenging site adjacent to an elevated motorway.

The jury panel at RIBA London felt that the Academy provides a striking presence ringed by the Westway, the railway and high rise local authority estates.

To enter the building you arrive in a generous open area, an inner courtyard that rises up through the building. The basic organisation is teaching and support spaces around the edges with a large full height court at the centre. The arrangement allows high levels of visibility for both staff and students. The graphic signage contributes a level of spirited corporate identity that traditional schools lack.

Colour is used extensively on the elevations, a reaction to the drab quality of the area. The local community has extensive access to both the school and its sports facilities. The staff and governors who were highly involved in the development of core ideas are immensely excited and proud of their building.

Allford Hall Monaghan Morris’ practice is the winner of 3 more RIBA London Awards 2008 with Adelaide Wharf, The Johnson Building & Sweeps Apartments and Sunshine House..

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