Hackney buildings pick up gongs at prestigious London architecture awards

London Aquatics Centre

London Aquatics Centre - Credit: Archant

Some of Hackney and Islington’s most eye-catching buildings were recognised at an architectural awards ceremony last week.

The Garden School

The Garden School - Credit: Archant

The London Aquatics Centre in Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and a Stoke Newington were among 33 designs that won gongs at the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) London Awards.

The London Aquatics Centre, which hosted swimming and diving events during the 2012 Olympics, was also recognised. Designed by Zaha Hadid Architects, based in Bowling Green Lane, Finsbury, the building is now open for public use.

A spokesman for the practice said: “Ten new world records were set in the Aquatics Centre during the 2012 Games and 1.5 million people visited the building during the Olympic and Paralympic Games. But the centre was built for its legacy for London - and since opening to the public nine weeks ago, more than 75,000 people have already used the centre with its many different sessions for individuals, families, schools and clubs.”

Meanwhile King’s Cross station, which dates from 1852, was brought into the 21st century with a redevelopment “blending old and new”. The makeover cost £547million and took 15 years to complete, with the pièce de résistance being its cavernous steel and glass concourse.

A spokesman for John McAslan + Partners, the project’s lead architects, said: “This relationship between old and new creates a modern transport super-hub at King’s Cross, whilst revitalising and unveiling one of the great railway monuments of Britain.”

The Garden School in Wordsworth Road, Stoke Newington, received a special award for Client of the Year. The special educational needs school is a partnership between Hackney Council, Mouchel Babcock education services and Gollifer Langston Architects.

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Other buildings honoured included the London Advertising offices in Golden Lane, Finsbury, which were transformed into a sleek blend of classic and contemporary design by Amin Taha Architects, 36-storey skyscraper Milton Court in Silk Street, Barbican, designed by David Walker Architects, who created a residential block which also houses part of the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, and geometrically unique house Otts Yard in Tufnell Park, created by vPPR Architects.

Amin Taha, whose firm is based in Clerkenwell Close, said: “We and London Advertising are very proud to gain an RIBA award for revealing the Victorian character of the building which had been hidden behind decades of additions.”

There were 173 entries to the awards with 64 buildings shortlisted. Winners are eligible to be considered for the RIBA National Awards and potentially for the Stirling Prize shortlist, which is announced later in the year.