The Winners

First Place: Brooks Murray Architects<br>
UK – London.

Judging Panel Comments: 
“This project offers an example of how urban ruins can be regenerated into new complexes. Its response to the urban and design brief highlights the importance of the original wall, and incorporates it as the main feature of the project. Its transformation into a living function will help create life in the project’s internal space and public plaza, which responds to the traditional local fabric and enriches the urban surroundings.  Covering the façade with trees will also allow the viewer to remember it as an urban ruin.

The central courtyard is flexible and adaptable and can be used for many things including events, functions, performances and festivals, while the surrounding indoor activities can also be extended to the courtyard.”

Second Place: ​Ali Habibianfar and Parisa Davoudi
France – Paris

Judging Panel Comments: 
“The proposal of a memorial park offers a much needed space in the centre of the city that contrasts with the dense urban fabric. While there might have been the expectation of a building, we are pleasantly surprised with an open space.   

The underground spaces would be particularly enjoyable in the summer months as they could create an urban cavern for social gatherings.

While the longitudinal section needed to show more information to support the idea, the waterbody would further offer a state of tranquillity and serenity that complements the wall.”

Third Place:  Mustafa Kamil 
USA – Texas

Judging Panel comments:  
“A delicate steel and glass structure stands behind the government façade, which frames it and contrasts against it. The more traditional streetscape leads to a surprisingly light interior space that is articulated by the filigree ceiling and glazed roof.  

The architects’ inspiration for the project was a palm tree forest, and this has been nicely interpreted as a series of interior columns.

The progressive design proposes to convert the old street in front of the qishla into another dimension in time. It presents the existing components within a contemporary dimension that will enhance and provide another way of treating the historical building and site.”

People’s Choice Award*

The People’s Choice Award winner was selected by 15 Iraqi architects and academics representing most architecture schools in the country, heritage specialists and the Iraqi architectural community. 

People’s Choice Award winner + Honourable Mention:  COdESIGN
Team members:  Anna Cornaro and Valerio de Divitiis
UAE – Dubai

Judging Panel comments:  
“Inside this walled village, the footpath leads to a public square as well as a more private inner courtyard, dividing the site and giving it a sense of hierarchy. The surrounding wall has been respectfully treated.”

Honourable Mentions

Honourable Mention:  Design and More International
Team members:    Islam El Mashtooly,  Eslam Salem, Abdelrahman Magdy and Ahmed Salah. 
UAE – Dubai 

Judging Panel comments:  
“This project rightly considers the wider urban site and creates connections. We were delighted to see a site plan. Considering the existing surroundings, it shows a particularly strong urban approach. It also shows the fluidity of the public realm.”

Honourable Mention:  Adamakis Architects and Associates
Team Members:  Stefanos Adamakis, Konstantinos Adamakis, Elpinki Pavlou, Papakonstantinou Maria
Greece – Volos 

Judging Panel comments:  
“Two large buildings and an inner courtyard create a believable and useful plan and the addition of the corten cladding provides excellent lighting in a climate that is characterised by very bright sunlight. 

We would have liked to see the ample entrance also reflected in an exit on the far end of the courtyard.”

Honourable Mention:  Tay Otham Architecture and Design
USA – San Francisco  

Judging Panel Comments:  
“The proposal of spaces for debate is a welcome one in the centre of Baghdad. This proposal offers a strong attempt to embody diversity in relatively open spaces. We commend the designer’s attempt to create something that is innovative, particularly in the roof.”

Honourable Mention:  Mostafa Mahdy
Germany – Mannheim 

Judging Panel comments:  
“This proposal for a walled town showed particularly good morphological studies of the development’s form and void. Although the project includes a small auditorium and a central piazza/courtyard, we felt that the small scale of buildings was not appropriate for the centre of Baghdad.

Tamayouz Excellence Award founder, Ahmed Al-Mallak said:
“Congratulations to the winners of the Rifat Chadirji Prize for Architecture 2018. We are delighted to see the success of the second cycle of the prize. We launched the Baghdad Design Centre competition to highlight the neglect and carelessness towards architectural heritage in Iraq with the hope to see a new architectural approach that helps Baghdad celebrate its heritage and raise awareness of the importance of maintaining all the layers of its history and heritage.

The participation of 310 firms and individuals from 54 countries, all contributing ideas and responding architecturally to the systematic attack on Iraqi culture is  heartwarming. This competition had the value of reflecting difficult and controversial situations but through a reasonably optimistic lens. Although the competition finished, we think it is time for the responsible authorities in Iraq to rethink their unprofessional approach of randomly awarding design contracts without looking for better alternatives. The first step can be comparing the 310 alternative approaches of this competition with their only proposed low quality scheme for the same site.”

The winner selected by the judging panel will receive the Rifat Chadirji Prize trophy (designed by the Dia Al-Azzawi, a pioneer of modern Arab art and one of the most prominent artists in the Middle East) at the Tamayouz Award Ceremony in Amman,  Jordan in December 2018, where an exhibition of the entries will be held and the 2019 theme of the prize will be announced.

* People’s Choice Award
The People’s Choice Award winner was selected by Iraqi architects and academics representing most architecture schools in the country, heritage specialists and the Iraqi architectural community and they are:  Ali Bassim – University of Baghdad, Dr Ahmed Yousif Al-Omary – Mosul University, Dr Ammar S. Ashour – University of Baghdad, Dr Hadeer Merza – University of Petra in Jordan, Dr Hamid Turki – University of Salahaddin, Dr Hasan Al-Guesbi – University of Babylon, Dr Maha Malaika – University of Duhok, Dr Mohammed Qasim Al Ani – Al-Nahrain University, Dr Saba Sami – Al-Nahrain University, Dr Salahaddin Yasin – University of Salahaddin, Dr Shaimaa Hameed Hussein – Al-Nahrain University, Dr Wahda Al-Hinkawi  – University of Technology, Dr Haider Naji  – University of Karbala, Professor Asmaa Al-Muqaram – University of Technology and Professor Jassim Al-Dabbagh – Al-Nahrain University

This award and the meeting for the judges was made possible through the support of our generous sponsors: The Iraqi Business Council in Jordan, Kufa – Makiya Charity, Coventry University, Dewan Architects + Engineers,  the United Nations Global Compact, Tradex Global ltd, Ayad Al-Tuhafi Architects and IDP Group – Coventry.