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Honorees Announced: 2015 MASterworks Awards

2015 MASterworks Awards

Annual Awards by the Municipal Art Society Recognize Excellence in Architecture and Urban Design

The Municipal Art Society of New York announced the winners of the 2015 MASterworks Awards, a competition hosted annually by MAS to recognize projects completed in the preceding year that make a significant contribution to New York’s built environment. The awards will be presented on the evening of April 16 at the Museum at Eldridge Street.

“From a transit hub that bends sunlight, to a sidewalk that fortifies tree roots, the 2015 MASterworks honorees embody the innovation and creativity that drive New York’s best architects and designers,” said Margaret Newman, FAIA, Executive Director of MAS. “We look forward to celebrating all of this year’s winners at a ceremony next month, and thank them for enhancing New York one project at a time.”

2015 honorees placed in six categories:

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Best New Building: Fulton Center, Grimshaw Architects

The MASterworks jury selected an infrastructure project as Best New Building for 2014, an unusual move that highlights the Fulton Center’s role as more than just a train station. Its design was noted for demonstrating innovation, creativity, and the bravery to play with geometry. Suspended within the atrium is a piece of artwork by James Carpenter Design Associates called “Sky Reflector-Net,” an integrated web of cables and aluminum panels that brings natural sunlight down into the lowest levels of the building. The artwork combines beauty and function, reduces energy consumption, and powerfully connects daily transit users with a tangible sense of daylight.

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Best Neighborhood Catalyst: 1000 Dean Street and Berg’n, Selldorf Architects

Opened in 2013, the historic Studebaker service station has been renovated and repurposed as office and studio space for the creative community. The project highlights a growing opportunity for design in New York City that reimagines and repurposes old buildings to suit modern needs. An adjacent garage was converted into Berg’n, a 9,000 square foot beer garden and restaurant operated by the creators of the Brooklyn Flea and Smorgasburg, which has already become an immensely popular draw in the neighborhood.

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Best New Infrastructure: NYC Emergency Housing Prototype, Garrison Architects

Developed for NYC Emergency Management, these prototypes imagine a system of modular homes that could be deployed to house displaced residents in the event of an emergency. These multi-story, multi-family units can be deployed in less than 15 hours. The project is innovative in its willingness to address the City’s climate change challenges and consider the role that prefabrication could play in meeting our urgent housing needs.

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Best New Urban Amenity: Hudson Square Standard, Mathews Nielsen Landscape Architects

The Hudson Square Standard reimagines the potential for urban sidewalks by finding small changes to the design and structure of our streets that can yield major environmental and health impacts. Its innovation is best seen from below the ground, where trees have been planted in expanded subterranean plots that give their roots more room to grow. Hudson Square Connection continues to serve as a catalyst for efficient and sophisticated design intervention in the public realm.

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Best Restoration: Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum, Beyer Blinder Belle Architects and Planners in collaboration with Gluckman Mayner Architects

The result of an ambitious collaboration between 13 leading design firms, the Cooper Hewitt project is more than just a beautiful restoration of a landmarked mansion; it also lays out an innovative master plan for a 21st century design museum. The MASterworks jury praised the effort as well for the diversity of use it imagines and the seamless way it integrates Smithsonian-grade technology, calling it an impeccable and extensive re-thinking of a historic space.

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Best Urban Landscape: The Engineering Quadrangle, Bruce Newman and the Pratt Design Team

Celebrated for creating a “truly urban landscape,” the goals of this project were numerous. By redesigning and rebuilding the space to allow for better circulation, increased aesthetics, and an increased cohesiveness with the rest of campus, Pratt’s Engineering Quadrangle is now a hub for the neighborhood and school community.

About the Jury and Ceremony

This year’s fantastic pool of nominees made the evaluation process especially challenging for the 2015 jury, which included Elizabeth Belfer, Analyst, Belfer Management, LLC; Vincent Chang, RIBA, AIA, Partner, Grimshaw Architects; Helena Rose Durst, Vice President, The Durst Organization; Everardo Jefferson, Principal, Caples Jefferson Architects; and Dan Shannon, Principal, Moed de Armas and Shannon Architects. Jury members recused themselves from categories involving conflicts of interest.

The 2015 MASterworks Awards are sponsored by JCDecaux and the awards ceremony will be held on Thursday, April 16 from 7-9:00 PM at the Museum at Eldridge Street (located at 12 Eldridge Street.)