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Midlands building in running for top award

Architect Richard Stretton of Koop Design was awarded an Award of Excellence at the 2018 Corobrik SAIA Architectural Awards for the design of The Lake House, a gorgeous building in the Midlands. Stretton’s project was among the award winners for the KwaZulu-Natal region and his entry was submitted for the national awards.

The adjudicators said at the recent awards that buildings like The Lake House required dedication and attention to detail. “This building is set in the idyllic and undulating hills of the Midlands of KwaZulu-Natal, next to a small lake. The plan and section is generous and deceptively simple and direct. The hands of the various levels of craftspeople who made the building are clearly visible and so is the pride in their handiwork.”


They said the “relaxed simplicity” of the building showed great skill and dedication on the part of the design team.

Two additional buildings in KZN received an Award of Merit at the awards. The K-Rith Tower Building at UKZN by Elphick Proome Architects and the RCL Foods Head Office built by JT Ross and designed by W design architecture studios.

One hundred and eighty architects and built environment professionals gathered in Pretoria for the awards.

“SAIA’s mission is to pursue excellence and responsible design. It is also to uphold the dignity of the architectural profession and contribute meaningfully to the enhancement of society and the environment,” said president of SAIA and convenor of the awards programme Maryke Cronje. “These awards ratify SAIA’s mission by recognising and promoting excellence in architecture.”


“In travelling to the sites of all short-listed entries we have seen that sustainability and care for the environment has been prominent. There is a great use of natural and sustainable materials as well as consideration for the landscape.

The Lake House by Richard Stretton of Koop design.

“While some materials used are imported, local tradespeople were used so that when a project was complete the tradesmen walked off the site with a set of skills that could be applied elsewhere. This is good for our country,” said Cronje.

Sixty-one regional winners were entered into the National Awards. Each region submits their winning projects to go through to the national Corobrik SAIA Awards. The judges assessed all 61 entries and prepared a shortlist. These shortlisted projects were visited, and winners selected.

Five projects received Commendations. A further 24 were presented with awards of merit. Six projects received Awards for Excellence, the highest distinction that institute can confer on a project in South Africa.
The six recipients of the Awards for Excellence are:
• New Residence, 151 Main Road, Constantia designed by Malan Vorster Architecture;
• The Delville Wood Memorial submitted by The Creative Axis Architects in association with Mayat Hart Architects;
• The Johannesburg Holocaust and Genocide Centre by Lewis Levin Architects
• Sasol Place entered by Paragon Architects;
• The Lake House designed by KOOP Design;
• NZASM Footsteps along the tracks written by Nicholas J Clarke and Roger C Fischer

In the picture: The Lake House, a building in the Midlands, earned architect Richard Stretton an Award of Excellence at the Corobrik SAIA Architectural Awards and has now been entered into the national awards. Pictures: Supplied


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