Shortlist for UK’s best new building revealed

London Bridge station, shortlisted for the RIBA Stirling Prize 2019.

An exciting and diverse six-strong shortlist for the coveted 2019 RIBA Stirling Prize for the UK’s best new building has been revealed, with the buildings competing to be crowned the best in the UK ranging vastly in their type, scale, budget and location. 

A Scottish whisky distillery, a major London transport interchange, rural opera house, large development of energy-efficient council housing, experimental house made of cork and contemporary art gallery are all in the running.

The six shortlisted buildings are:

  • Cork House, Berkshire (Architect: Matthew Barnett Howland with Dido Milne and Oliver Wilton): an ingenious, experimental, carbon-neutral private house made almost entirely from cork;
  • Goldsmith Street, Norwich (Architect: Mikhail Riches with Cathy Hawley): a large development of 105 highly energy-efficient homes for social rent, designed to Passivhaus standards for Norwich City Council;
  • London Bridge Station (Architect: Grimshaw): a radical reconfiguration and development of one of London’s busiest stations with a new voluminous, light-filled concourse;
  • Nevill Holt Opera, Leicestershire (Architect: Witherford Watson Mann Architects): a contemporary opera theatre within a 17th-century stable block;
  • The Macallan Distillery and Visitor Experience, Moray (Architect: Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners): a dynamic, high-tech visitor centre with an undulating grass-covered roof;
  • The Weston, Yorkshire Sculpture Park (Architect: Feilden Fowles Architects): an exquisite new gallery nestled in the Yorkshire landscape;

RIBA president Ben Derbyshire said: “The RIBA Stirling Prize shortlist epitomises the enviable global reputation of UK architecture. These six buildings could hardly be more diverse in typology and scale – from a rustic stable block-turned-theatre to a vast national railway station. But what they have in common – ground-breaking innovation, extraordinary creativity and the highest quality materials and detailing – sets them apart, rightfully earning them a chance to win the highest accolade in architecture.

“The ambition and commitment of the clients who commissioned the buildings is remarkable and sits at the heart of their success. Given the fact the UK faces the worst housing crisis for generations and a global climate emergency, we must encourage their architectural ambition, innovation, bravery and skill. From the way that Cork House experiments with entirely plant-based materials, to Goldsmith Street’s ultra-low energy affordable homes, each of these six buildings push the boundaries of architecture, exceeding what has been done before, and providing solutions to some of the most pressing challenges of our times.”

The winner of the 2019 RIBA Stirling Prize will be announced on Tuesday 8 October 2019 at the Roundhouse in London.

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