American architecture firms win Canadian competitions and AIA awards

Antoine Predock, FAIA, has won the AIAs highest honor, the 2006 AIA Gold Medal, and California-based Moore Ruble Yudell Architects have won the 2006 Firm Award. Earlier this year, Predock was declared the winner of the Canadian Museum for Human Rights competition, and Moore Ruble Yudell along with Vancouver’s Hughes Condon Marler were declared the winners of the University of British Columbia Boulevard Design Competition.

Predock, based in Albuquerque, becomes the 62nd AIA Gold Medalist. His work is inspired by the countrys rugged landscapes, with buildings that often emulate rock formations, combined with highly contemporary, angular shapes. One well-known project is the Minnesota Gateway in Minneapolis, whose faade seems similar to a large stone face. Its interior is highlighted by apublic space formed by an irregular polyhedron of colliding granite planes and glazed fissures that allow sunlight to enter in sharp beams. The recently completed Flint Riverquarium in Albany, Georgia, merges the rocky geology of the citys Flint River with the building itself, formed with concrete and limestone blocks. Predock also recently completed a new City Hall for Austin, Texas, and a new baseball stadium for the San Diego Padres.

Completing an honours lineup tilted towards the Western states, Moore Ruble Yudell, headquartered in Santa Monica, has garnered acclaim for its human-scaled, urban, and welcoming large-scale residential projects. These include the recently completed Joseph A. Steger Student Life Center at the University of Cincinnati. Here, the firm created a lively, light-filled collection of spaces by carefully overlapping interior and exterior spaces, and juxtaposing brick, metal, and concrete. The Tango Housing in Malm, Sweden, employs subdued massing and angular geometries to both mesh with the surrounding streetscape and add to excitement to the interior courtyards.

Both the Gold Medal and Firm Award will be awarded at the AIAs Accent on Architecture in Washington, DC on February 10, 2006.