The Met in Bangkok wins German architectural award

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A Bangkok residential tower, The Met, won on Friday a prize awarded every two years by the city of Frankfurt and DekaBank, for environmental innovation in the heart of a major global city.

The International Highrise Award of 50,000 euros (70,500 dollars) was given to the 230-metre-tall (755-foot-tall) tower that contains 370 apartments in the centre of Bangkok and was completed in 2009.

Designed by the Singapore-based architectural group WOHA in association with Bangkok-based Tandem Architects, The Met allows for "sustainable living conditions in this tropical region without recourse to air conditioning," a statement said.

The jury felt it "strikes an innovative green note at the heart of Sathorn, a tightly-packed inner-city district of Bangkok," with balconies covered in foliage and free areas running through the structure that gave a sense of transparency.

Also on the short list were the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, currently the world's tallest building, the Aqua Tower in Chicago, World Financial Center in Shanghai and Tokyo Mode Gakuen Cocoon Tower.

A jury presided by Spender de Grey of London-based architects Foster + Partners, winners of the 2008 competition, gave the Burj Khalifa "a special commendation for technical innovation."

© 2010 AFP

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