Urban Land Institute announces five winners of 2009 Awards for Excellence: EMEA

Five outstanding developments have been selected as winners of the Urban Land Institute (ULI) 2009 Awards for Excellence: Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) competition. This year, the competition also included the announcement of two special award winners. The Awards for Excellence competition is widely regarded as the land use industry's most prestigious recognition program.

The winners were announced on June 30 during an Awards for Excellence ceremony hosted in London by ULI EMEA, which serves nearly 2,600 members across Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and India.

The awards recognize the full development process of a project, not just its architecture or design. The criteria for the awards include leadership, contribution to the community, innovations, public/private partnership, environmental protection and enhancement, response to societal needs, and financial success.

The 2009 ULI EMEA Awards for Excellence winning projects were selected from among 39 entries representing 17 countries. The winners (owners and/or developers in parentheses) are:

Akaretler Row Houses/W Hotel, Istanbul, Turkey (Akaretler Turizm Yatirimlari A.Þ.). In the heart of the business and hotel district of Istanbul, the original Akaretler Row Houses were built in 1875 by the order of Sultan Abdülaziz as an annex to Dolmabahçe Palace for the accommodation of palace staff. The historic renovation of these houses led the revitalization of an abandoned district now featuring office space, retail and residential areas, and the W Istanbul Hotel. Its ideal location allows a minute's walk to a variety of museums, theaters, and restaurants.

Elm Park, Dublin, Ireland (Radora Developments Ltd.). Elm Park is a low-energy-use, high-density, mixed-use project comprising a private hospital, a hotel, offices, apartments, housing for seniors, plus cafés and sandwich bars, all in a richly landscaped parklike setting on eight hectares (20 acres). The initial plans called for a minimization of energy demand, which was achieved by capitalizing on the benefits of building orientations, using natural light and ventilation, and creating a large public landscape.

Hilton Tower, Manchester, U.K. (the Beetham Organization). At 169 meters (554 feet) and 48 floors, this is the UK's tallest mixed-use building and a spectacular addition to Manchester's skyline. The 4,600-m² development comprises 219 luxury apartments and a 279-bed Hilton Hotel on a site of less than 0.5 hectares (1.2 acres). This iconic project creates a visual connection between the city's south and the center.

Leoben Judicial Complex, Leoben, Austria (BIG-Services, Immobilienmanagementgesellschaft des Bundes mbH). A new approach for a penal system, this complex includes a court building and an integrated prison for 200 inmates. It serves as a model of design for the Austrian penal system with its open design, which creates a sense of transparency. It is all designed with a focus on human dignity while satisfying all safety requirements and giving the city a new and beautiful building.

Mountain Dwellings, Copenhagen, Denmark (Hoepfner and Danish Oil Company). Mountain Dwellings was designed to be two-thirds parking and one-third living. Rather than constructing two separate, adjacent buildings, it was decided that the two functions needed to be merged to create a symbiotic relationship. This project offers a multi-story parking structure as the foundation for 80 housing units integrated into one 10-story building with optimized solar orientation, natural ventilation, and on-site rainwater collection used in the landscaped roof garden areas.

The Special Award winners were chosen in recognition of their unique scope and context; exceptionally large scale; and exemplary practice in terms of design, sustainability, and community engagement.

The Special Award winners are (owners and/or developers in parentheses):

American University in Cairo New Campus, Cairo, Egypt (AUC). The university's new campus is located at the center of New Cairo City, about 40 kilome

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