BEHF Corporate Architects of Vienna/Austria has won an Honorable Mention in the first annual AAP American Architecture Prize which recognizes the most outstanding architecture worldwide.
The architects won this in the category Architectural Design /Commercial Architecture for their project "Shopping Nord Graz“.
Design architect and principal BEHF Corporate Achitects Armin Ebner:
"Our project tells a story, as architecture should do, it is about location development, refurbishment and sustainability and it is about the upgrade to a smart shopping center, which maximizes shopping, gastronomic, work and leisure experiences.“
The largest shopping centre north of Graz/Austria, owned by the Austrian Kovac corporate group, has been converted and extended by the architects to meet actual and anticipated evolving, future standards. It also boasts state-of-the-art technical refurbishment.
Significant architectural highlights of Shopping Nord Graz are two new transparent pavilions housing retail and gastronomy outlets and restaurants connected to the main building by a single, free-standing roof to create a unique – almost ten meter high – canopy. This is built on reinforced concrete stilts that appear randomly arranged to create a lively and bright space. The effect is accentuated by a glazed, asymetrical and circular roof opening to allow plenty of natural light that also illuminates seating areas on the curved and colourful paved promenade further enhancing user enjoyment. The soffit of the exposed concrete roof is not only broken up by the three free-form skylights, but also shines as a result of the colour applied to areas of the ceiling around the skylights.
The former closed structure of the main building has been transformed by huge glas facades and expanded, inviting entrances that also promote a better user orientation. This all represents distinctive shopping center refurbishment that more than delivers on all criteria and refinements – including on ecological and economical challenges – and demonstrates BEHF Corporate Architects’ well-deserved reputation for outstanding work in this speciality area.
Since its opening in 2015 "Shopping Nord Graz" has received several other accolades, including the Special German Design Award.
BEHF Corporate Architects
BEHF Corporate Architects is one of Austria’s largest architectural firms. It was established by principals Armin Ebner, Susi Hasenauer and Stephan Ferenczy in 1996. The architects have executed a wide range of award winning projects. The heart of BEHF Corporate Architects is the understanding of good architecture as a result of good communication. The architecture becomes an intricate part and message of the corporate of the client.
The architects are active nationally and internationally with a particular focus on retail, refurbishment of heritage buildings, hotels, restaurants and residential construction.
The AAP American Architecture Prize
honours designs in the disciplines of architecture, interior design, and landscape architecture with the goal of advancing the appreciation of architecture worldwide. The winners are selected by a panel of esteemed experts.
Official name of the project: Shopping Nord Graz
Location: Wiener Straße 341, 8051 Graz, Austria
Project end date: July 2015
Area: 10.600 m2
Client: Kovac Management GmbH
Architects: BEHF Corporate Architects
Design and concept: Armin Ebner
Project Manager: Alexander Körözsi
Collaboators: Christian Schwarzinger
Photo credits/ Photographer: Markus Kaiser