The Countdown Begins – 1 Month to WAF 2014

There is only one month to go before World Architecture Festival 2014 begins in Singapore. World Architecture Festival (WAF) is the world’s largest, live, inclusive and interactive global architecture event. Now in its seventh year, WAF returns to Moshe Safdie’s award-winning Marina Bay Sands, from 1st – 3rd October 2014.

This year’s festival will welcome more than 2,000 attendees from more than 60 countries who will experience an extensive programme of conference sessions, seminars, workshops and exhibitions.

The festival will start at 10am on Wednesday 1st October with a newly announced keynote speech from Ole Scheeren, Principal, Buro Ole Scheeren. Ole will give his unique perspective on the relationship between architects, architecture and urbanism, in a world changed utterly by the wave of city-building which is defining and transforming life in the 21st century. Ole joins fellow keynote speakers Richard Rogers, Rocco Yim, Saskia Sassen and Moshe Safdie who will speak on a range of issues and topics reflecting this year’s festival theme of ‘Architects and the City’.

Additional new programme sessions announced today include:
‘Starting from Scratch’ – WAF Main Stage- 15.20 – 16.00, Wednesday 1 October 
Leading architects will join the developers of the Sino-Singapore Tianjin Eco-city in discussing the key issues informing new town programmes. The session will explore the challenges involved in realising the vision of creating a thriving city which is socially harmonious, environmentally-friendly and resource-efficient. When completed in 2020, the city will have an estimated 350,000 residents. Ho Tong Yen, CEO, Sino Singapore Tianjin Eco City, will be joined on the panel discussion by Andy Wen, Executive Director, Aedas; Kevin Kwang Yang Sim, Principal, New Space Architecture; and Lars Autrup, Head of Projects, Realdania Foundation.

‘Pleased to meet you: Heatherwick Studio’ – WAF Festival Hall Stage – 12.00 – 12.40, Thursday 2 October 
Following Thomas Heatherwick’s keynote speech at WAF 2013, his eponymous practice will showcase its unique use of materials, from the ordinary to the extraordinary and experimental, and how these are being incorporated at its new ‘The Learning Hub’ project for Nanyang Technological University (NTU) in Singapore.

‘Meet your next client’ – WAF Festival Hall, Various times
For the first time, the organisers of WAF are arranging a series of networking sessions for delegates to meet representatives of some of the region’s prominent developers and city planners, including Ayala Land Premier, Fortis Healthcare, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts, Hilton Europe, Hong Leong Holdings Limited, Singapore Housing & Development Board, Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) and Malaysian Resources Corporation Berhad.

Paul Finch, Programme Director of the World Architecture Festival said: “With only 30 days to go until WAF 2014 kicks off in Singapore, our comprehensive conference programme continues to grow in size, scope and spirit. As the world’s leading architects and designers are preparing to descend on Moshe Safdie’s remarkable Marina Bay Sands, we’re looking forward to three jam-packed days of design debate and discussion of all that is truly inspiring about architecture and the profession.”

Architects from across the globe will also be preparing to present their projects that have been shortlisted for the WAF Awards, which sit at the heart of the event. 283 projects have been shortlisted across 29 categories of Completed Buildings, Future Projects and Landscape Projects in the world’s biggest architectural awards programme. Uniquely at WAF, two representatives from every single shortlisted practice attend the festival to present their nominated project live in 20 minute crit sessions over the first two days of the event.

The winners of each category will be eligible to compete for the festival’s ultimate prize, The World Building of the Year, which will be presided over by WAF’s ‘super jury’. The super-jury comprises a selection of the world’s leading architects and designers, led by renowned British architect Richard Rogers. Rogers will be joined on the super-jury by Rocco Yim (Hong Kong), Julie Eizenberg (USA), Enric Ruiz Geli (Spain) and Peter Rich (South Africa).

Two additional prizes will be awarded at this year’s festival for the first time to reward the creative use of colour and materials: The Exterior Colour Prize, sponsored by AkzoNobel; and the Wood Excellence Prize, sponsored by the American Hardwood Export Council (AHEC).

The event is being held in association with Singapore Institute of Architects (SIA)’s festival of ideas about the city, Archifest.

World Architecture Festival is collocated with INSIDE World Festival of Interiors (www.insidefestival.com). INSIDE celebrates the world’s finest interiors of the last year and also has at its heart a live international awards programme.

For more information visit: www.worldarchitecturefestival.com