Contest for the Alpine-wide Architecture Prize for Sustainable Construction and Renovation “Constructive Alps 2017”
Bern, 04.11.2016 - For the fourth time overall, Switzerland and the Principality of Liechtenstein will award the International “Constructive Alps” Prize for sustainable architecture. The contest aims at honouring the most outstanding sustainable construction and sustainable renovation projects, in accordance with the principles of sustainable architecture across the Alps.
A newly constructed or refurbished building respectively has to be suitable for the needs of the dwellers and comply with the economic and technical criteria for sustainable building. The contest is aimed at searching for the most outstanding construction and renovation projects, which are characterized by both aesthetic appeal and sustainability. The 4th International “Constructive Alps” Prize Contest, represents a joint contribution by Switzerland and the Principality of Liechtenstein to the implementation of the objectives of the Alpine Convention (see box below) and the Convention's Action Plan on Climate Change in the Alps. The contest will take place under the auspices of the Swiss Federal Office for Spatial Development (ARE).
Alpine-wide sustainable construction and renovation projects are subjected to various requirements. Aspects, particularly important in this regard, are for example: connectedness of the building to the public transport system; resources used for generating energy for heating and power; the impact of the buildings on the environment; structural quality; and the embedding of the buildings into the spatial, (local) societal and cultural context. Therefore, it should be no surprise that submitted projects will be assessed based on stringent criteria that consider the significance of each scrutinized building for the local environment and community and also take into account the level of comfort and quality of living it provides to the users.
The top three award winners of the 2015 International Constructive Alps Prize Contest are paramount examples of how to comply with the strict criteria of sustainable building and renovation successfully. The rectory in Krumbach in the Austrian Bregenz Forest was the absolute winner of the last contest. The structure stands out due to the highly efficient use of limited spaces. The building plays a major role in the renaissance of the Krumbach village centre. Two refurbishments from the Swiss village of Valendas show how a historic village centre can be revived. The projects that jointly earned 2nd place were the transformation of the traditional 500-year old "Engihuus" into an inn with guest rooms and a multi-purpose hall and the refurbishment of its nearby contemporary - the "Türalihuus". Both projects are a testimony to the successful merger between sustainable tourism, vibrant social life, and purposeful preservation of historical heritage. The "bronze medal" was bestowed upon the "Casa Riga", an innovative wooden house built in Comano Terme in the Trentino region of Italy. Although the structure partially submerged below ground level, it still provides the guests with a splendid view.
The application deadline for the 4th International “Constructive Alps” Prize Contest (Constructive Alps 2017) is on 20 January 2017.
The Alpine Convention is an agreement between eight alpine countries (Austria, France, Germany, Italy, Liechtenstein, Monaco, Slovenia and Switzerland) and the European Union signed in 1991. It represents a legally binding state treaty aimed at promoting the protection and the sustainable development of the Alps. Specific measures implementing the principles laid down in the Framework Convention are contained in the eight Protocols to the Alpine Convention. With the adoption of the Action Plan on Climate Change in the Alps, the contracting parties also committed to implementing measures and providing the means necessary to transform the Alps into a model region with regard to climate change mitigation and adapting to climate change. The concept of sustainable construction and renovation takes on a crucial role in this context, as the energy consumed for building construction, heating and building removal represents a third of the energy consumed across the entire Alpine region. Constructive Alps 2017 represents a joint contribution by Switzerland and the Principality of Liechtenstein to the implementation of the objectives of the Alpine Convention and the Convention's Action Plan on Climate Change in the Alps. The international award itself originates from ambitious efforts undertaken by the Energy Platfrom – a special-field working group established by the Permanent Committee of the Alpine Convention.
For the fourth time overall – after 2010, 2013 and 2015 – Switzerland and the Principality of Liechtenstein will award the International “Constructive Alps” Prize for sustainable architecture across the Alps. The contest will take place under the auspices of the Swiss Federal Office for Spatial Development (ARE). The prize is also a synonym for successful co-operational activities between ministries, educational and cultural institutions, and non-governmental organizations. During the selection process, the International Constructive Alps Jury is supported by experts from the University of Lichtenstein. The travelling exhibition of approximately 30 projects that will progress into the 2nd round of the selection project will be composed by the expert staff of the Swiss Alpine Museum in Berne. The projects featuring in the travelling exhibition will also be featured in a special edition of the Swiss architecture magazine Hochparterre. The International Commission for the Protection of the Alps (CIPRA) provides additional technical and organizational support.
Address for enquiries
Federal Office for Spatial Development ARE
+41 58 462 40 60
Federal Office for Spatial Development
Last modification 03.10.2018