Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios’ University of Warwick Faculty of Arts has been named by RIBA as the best new building in the West Midlands.
The teaching facility, which consists of four pavilion buildings linked by an atrium set within parkland, has topped a list of six schemes which have won this year’s RIBA awards for the region.
Judges praised how the fragmented scheme brought views of the surrounding landscape into the heart of the buildings, and how the parkland character of the site is reflected in the choice of materials, which include a timber arch staircase inspired by the branches of a tree.
Education schemes dominate the list of winners, including the University of Birmingham Exchange by Make Architects and Glancy Nicholls, a transformation of a listed 1930s bank into a city-centre civic hub for the university.
It is one of a trio of refurbishment of historic buildings on the list. Associated Architects and Rodney Melville and Partners’ School of Architecture and the Built Environment for the University of Wolverhampton, a conversion of a derelict brewery, was described by judges as “exemplary”.
Houlton School by van Heyningen and Haward Architects reimagined a grade II-listed radio transmitter building as part of a state secondary school that will form part of an emerging housing district.
The scheme’s “cathedral-like” central dining hall was singled out by judges, who also praised the school’s clear delineation between old and new.
Two housing projects made the list, Howells’ Brick House, a square of 37 mews homes in Birmingham, and Hidden House by Hall + Bednarczyk Architects Ltd, a conversion of a 19th century barn into a contemporary home with a subterranean extension.
RIBA West Midlands Award winners will now be considered for a RIBA National Award, which will be announced on 22 June.
The shortlist for the RIBA Stirling Prize for the best building of the year will be drawn from the RIBA National Award-winning projects later in the year.