Cement giant LafargeHolcim has launched its fifth International Awards competition for "smart solutions for cities and the built environment".
The $2m awards are held every three years. They are organised by the LafargeHolcim Foundation for Sustainable Construction, and are open to entries from architects, urban designers, planners, technologists, and engineers working in the built environment.
Projects entered for the awards should combine sustainable construction with architectural excellence. They should also have reached an advanced stage of design, have a high probability of execution but should not have started construction before 4 July.
Image of Alejandro Aravena, LafargeHolcim Foundation board member
Participants under the age of 30 can also submit "visionary concepts" and "bold ideas", irrespective of their chances of implementation.
The competition is divided in five geographic regions, each with its own jury of specialists.
Projects are evaluated according to the region in which they are to be built, and are measured against the five "target issues" for sustainable construction. These cover innovation and transferability, ethical standards and social inclusion, resource and environmental performance, economic viability and compatibility, and contextual and aesthetic impact.
Example of the type of project favoured by the foundation were given at the 15th International Architecture Biennale in Venice.
Here Chilean architect Alejandro Aravena (pictured) gave members of the LafargeHolcim Foundation a tour of buildings such as Foster + Partner’s Droneport, which has a shell made 18,000 bricks made of compressed earth and cement. The product was optimised by the LafargeHolcim Research Centre in Lyon to meet the specific requirements of the project.
Entry is free and submissions close on 21 March.