US Architects Höweler + Yoon are the winners of the Audi Urban Future Award 2012 with their proposals for Boston/Washington
- Architecture prize goes to proposals for the “New American Dream” in Boston/Washington
- Stadler: “We will derive the requirements for the city of the future from Höweler+Yoon Architecture’s proposals”
- Award ceremony flanks Istanbul Design Biennial
The Audi Urban Future Award 2012 is presented to the American architecture practice Höweler + Yoon Architecture for their proposed concept for modern urbanization in the Boston/Washington metropolitan region. With their ambitious planning and architectural idea of the “shareway” the American team of architects revolutionize commuting between places of living and work. Their basic idea is to merge individual and public transport by means of a new kind of mobility platform. This combines existing infrastructure with intelligent flows of traffic and networks. For their holistically controlled traffic system Höweler + Yoon Architecture are awarded prize money of 100,000 euros.
John Thackara, design theorist and chairman of the interdisciplinary jury, explained the decision: “The jury selected as its winner the Boswash project by the design team of Höweler + Yoon Architecture. The jury concluded that this was the most thoroughly resolved response to the competition brief, and noted that it also has the potential to be realised, at least in part, within the 2030 timeframe prescribed by the competition. The jury also noted with approval that the winning entry is based on thorough research into its social and economic context; it involves both social and technical innovation at a system-wide level; and real architectural quality is evident in its execution.“
“The winning proposals are a visionary document setting out what is required for cities of the future. This city dossier will be a specific set of instructions about how to plan or remodel a metropolitan region, in order to tackle increasing density”, says Rupert Stadler, chairman of the executive board of AUDI AG.
The Audi Urban Future Award is intended to make a contribution to learning how to understand more about cities of the future. Because the question “in which form will individual mobility be possible?” can only be answered by the development of cities. In order to play an active part in shaping tomorrow’s world, Audi has to understand significant patterns of urban planning worldwide and their relevance for future mobility.
Höweler + Yoon Architecture, Boston/Washington:
The “American Dream” reinvents itself
The “New American Dream” of this Boston practice builds on a new social consensus: the focus is on the community, and sharing becomes more important than possessing. A decisive component of their proposal is the reorganization and bundling of all systems of transport to a highly technical, optimized and continually flowing main artery for mobility. The so-called “bundle” runs through the region from Boston to Washington, efficiently connecting suburbs and cities with each other to form an urban space with a potential population of more than 53 million.
Höweler + Yoon Architecture: “We're thrilled to be selected. We are grateful to Audi and Stylepark for the provocation - to speculate on issues of mobility in 2030. This type of initiative has the capacity to generate real ideas that can move the discourse, across disciplines: from urbanism to architecture to automotive design. These are all environments, and part of what we would consider and expanded practice of design. It’s been a real privilege to participate in this initiative.”
In addition to the winner Höweler + Yoon Architecture, four other architecture practices took part in the highest-value German architecture competition, which AUDI AG held this year for the second time following the first Award in 2010, by presenting their ideas for the metropolitan regions in which they are at home: CRIT (Mumbai, India), NODE Architecture & Urbanism (Pearl River Delta, China), Superpool (Istanbul, Turkey) and Urban-Think Tank (São Paulo, Brazil).
Even though the participants in the Award have produced visions for extremely diverse regions, nevertheless some generally applicable insights for the future of mobility can be derived from them:
- Space is an extremely scarce resource in megacities: the automobile has to learn to use it efficiently.
- Living space is becoming more and more expensive in metropolitan areas, and the disposable income that people have for their own cars is falling. Sharing is becoming increasingly important in cities.
- The digital revolution is conquering urban space. The car could take on a new role as an interface.
- Seamless transition between different forms of transport – known as intermodal mobility – is the basis of sustainable mobility.
Jury meeting and presentation of the Award
The meeting of the jury took place on the morning of 18 October in the Hasköy Spinning Factory in Istanbul. The jury members were: Diana Barco, architect and founder of the Rogelio Salmona Foundation (Columbia); Christian Gärtner, curator and board member of Stylepark AG (Germany); Adam Greenfield, network designer and founder of Urbanscale (USA); Harish Hande, board member and founder of Selco Solar India (India); Wang Lu, architect, journalist and founder of Studio in+of architecture (China); Jürgen Mayer H., architect, founder of J. MAYER H. Architects and winner of the Audi Urban Future Award 2010 (Germany); Rupert Stadler, chairman of the executive board of AUDI AG (Germany); John Thackara, design theorist and director of Doors of Perception (United Kingdom); and Yeşim Ustaoğlu, film maker (Turkey).
The proposals of Höweler + Yoon Architecture impressed the experts most following intense discussions. However, the visions of the other four architecture practices also contain inspiring approaches to the question of how mobility in megacities of the future can be rethought. Further information is available under the web links on http://mooove.com.
NODE Architecture & Urbanism, Pearl River Delta:
A region gains quality of life
Urban planning processes become democratic
Urban-Think Tank, São Paulo:
The new mobility lifestyle
Information for the press and photos are available at: