Architectural Awards

For us, significant awards, are those that recognise the wider social impact of our work and celebrate the full craft of architecture.

2018 marked RCKa’s 10th year in practice and so we’re particularly proud to celebrate our strongest awards season to date, with 5 projects so far securing or shortlisted for 6 significant awards.

For us, significant awards, are those that recognise the wider social impact of our work and celebrate the full craft of architecture. This can only truly be understood by visiting and experiencing our completed buildings, and preferably engaging in conversation with residents and users of them. We’ve long since advocated for projects that have a positive social value to be recognised, eschewing beauty pageant awards based on an arm’s length assessment of a few polished photographs, as this is not how we experience architecture.

In this way we like to think we have been part of a movement towards the delivery of a more meaningful and engaged architecture whose primary purpose in meeting our client’s needs, is to support use and users, albeit in as beautiful a way as possible. We are convinced of the importance of delivering buildings and places with greater relevance and resonance to people, and are heartened to hear most developers now talking about the importance of community, neighbourhoods and place-making.

Even by our own high standards, we are therefore thrilled to have our holistic approach to development recognised and look forward to celebrating with like-minded clients and stakeholders as together we go from strength to strength.

2018 highlights so far include our retirement living scheme for Pegasus Life in Hortsley that both the Building Awards and the Architect’s Journal have recognised, alongside featuring it as a detailed building study.

Here we developed a unique access and circulation strategy that brightens residents’ everyday lives with an arrangement that strongly encourages the adoption of shared space, which in-turn greatly increases chance and informal meetings, interaction and the formation of friendships. It has proven such a huge hit with residents that whenever we’ve visited the apartments have been all but empty, whilst the stacked residents’ gallery, shared gardens and lounge have been buzzing with activity.

We recently undertook a serious piece of research in partnership with Centre Point into solving the homeless crisis in London, particularly with regard to how this effects young people. Our twin focus was identifying a robust capital and revenue model to pay for state-of-the-art facilities, and devising a spatial model tailored around the needs of vulnerable young people. We are continuing discussions with TfL following our submission, which was highly commended and awarded second place.

Our Arklow Road project for Pocket Living was shortlisted for AJ Retrofit Awards’ best residential building re-use under £5m.  The project showcases a successful marriage between the client’s bold approach to design and our vision to embrace and enhance the local heritage of Deptford. Our extension to the side of the existing building houses a 15m high entrance courtyard open to the sky that is concealed behind street-facing entrance gates, providing a dramatic arrival into the building and encouraging residents to meet each other as they come and go. Recent visits back to the building have demonstrated the successes of this in helping grow a sense of community, with residents using shared spaces together and holding barbecues in the shared gardens.

Along with some esteemed company, we’re delighted that the Granville has been shortlisted for an AJ Architecture Award in the Community and Faith Project of the Year category. The project is the result of a two-year long partnership between a diverse range of project partners and local people in South Kilburn, determined to bring a treasured community asset back into full use. It provides community space for events and charitable activities, affordable workspace for local entrepreneurs and incorporates existing uses ranging from a children’s centre to community kitchen, all housed within a historic Edwardian building.

The scheme is a demonstration of what can happen when different parts of the community all come together for a common goal.

And finally, RCKa were thrilled to receive a Housing Design Award for our proposals for LB Camden to secure the future of Highgate Newtown Community Centre by provision of market sale housing that we are progressing in time for a re-opening in September 2020.