Sydney’s Barangaroo Reserve has won the prestigious best landscape design of the year award in the 2017 international American Architecture Prize.
The 22-hectare headland park was designed by Australian landscape architects Johnson Pilton Walker in association with PWP Landscape Architecture, a firm based in Berkeley near San Francisco, and built by Lend Lease. It opened in August 2015.
The prize is awarded annually. There are 41 prizes across three categories: architecture, interior design and landscaping. The Barangaroo award was one of only three ‘best in show’ awards.
There were other awards for Australia in this year’s prizes. Sydney firm FJMT (Francis-Jones Morehen Thorp) won the Tall Buildings award for its EY Centre in Sydney’s CBD, and Perth firm Iredale Pedersen Hook won awards for Perth Zoo’s Orangutan Exhibit and Boardwalk Experience, and for domestic architecture with its Casa31_4 house.
“Barangaroo is a globally-significant waterfront renewal project that redefines Sydney Harbour and its Central Business District,” says the award citation.
“Barangaroo Reserve was the first phase in the three-district precinct to open. The project re-creates Millers Point headland in its original location by transforming a concrete container port into a naturalistic park with over 75,000 plantings native to the Sydney region.
“Guided by historical maps and paintings, the design of the headland includes a foreshore of 10,000 sandstone blocks excavated directly from the site.
“Walking and bicycle pathways separated by the ‘1836 Wall’ symbolically mark the original precolonial shoreline. Barangaroo Reserve is carbon-neutral, water-positive, and committed to creating zero waste.
“Selected as a Clinton Global Initiative, One Planet Living, and C40 Climate Positive development, the project recycled all existing materials onsite to form the headland.
“Hidden beneath the artificial headland, the ‘Cutaway’ is a massive void formed through the sandstone excavation operations to host art exhibits, performances, and a future Aboriginal Cultural Centre.
“Barangaroo Reserve transforms a huge expanse of empty concrete into humane, usable space, marking the transformation of an industrialised site into a modern reinvention of its more sustainable past.”