Holcim Awards for the best sustainable construction projects

The Holcim Foundation for Sustainable Construction was established in 2003 to promote sustainable construction and to underscore Holcim’s endeavors toward sustainable development. Since that time, the Foundation, which is financed by the Group but operates independently of it, has established a global network of architects, engineers, planners, and builders and has linked the Holcim brand with the notion of sustainable construction.

Among the main activities of the Foundation are the International Holcim Awards for Sustainable Construction, announced every three years. This competition, with prize money totaling USD 2 million, awards ecologically, socially, and economically outstanding projects for sustainable planning and construction. The competition is conducted in two phases: First the best entries in the regions Asia Pacific, Latin America, Europe, North America and, Africa Middle East are identified, and then the regional main prize winners are qualified to compete for the Global Holcim Awards, which are conferred the following year.

A total of over 6,100 projects were submitted in the current fourth cycle. Roughly half of them were entered in the “Next Generation” category for visions of students and professionals not older than 30 years. 2,514 projects from 152 countries met the formal entry criteria and were assessed by five independent juries. During the second half of the year, a total of 62 projects in the various regions were awarded at ceremonies conducted jointly with the local Holcim Group companies in Moscow, Toronto, Medellín, Beirut, and Jakarta.

During this year the Holcim Foundation published another book in its series of outstanding examples of sustainable construction on all continents. “Benny Farm,” a rehabilitated and upgraded social housing development in Montreal, exemplifies how sustainable construction can be achieved by integrating users into the design process. The project, designed by Canadian architect Daniel Pearl, won the Global Holcim Awards Bronze in 2006.

The Board of the Holcim Foundation saw some personnel changes during the year: Yolanda Kakabadse (Ecuador), Hans-Rudolf Schalcher (Switzerland), and Klaus Töpfer (Germany), who have crucially contributed to the Foundation since its inception, stepped down and Marc Angélil (Switzerland), Alejandro Aravena (Chile), and Maria Atkinson (Australia) took their places. Information about the Holcim Foundation and its activities is available on www.holcimfoundation.org.