“The exemplary nature of the environmental thinking embodied in the design far exceeded the requirement of 20% savings for the certificate, achieving, 36% Energy Savings, 72% Water Savings and 96% Less Embodied Energy in Materials”
Winning entry in competition for AIMS Mathematical Institute - Saltpond, Ghana Nestled into the rolling coastal plains, the architecture of the mathematics institute in Saltpond Ghana, creates a serene place for contemplation. The building is informed by concepts of being earth bound with infinite horizons, proportion rhythm and scale.
Winning entry in competition for Ghana Institute of Architects Offices and Vanguard Insurance – Accra, Ghana The high rise, mixed use tower for the Ghana institute of Architecture, uses considered articulation of structure and servicing in an environmentally intelligent response to a complex programme to create an iconic identity for the Institute.
National competition John Moffat Building - University of the Witwatersrand Using the building programme to create a variety of incidental spaces for student staff interaction in galleries, volumes and courts, space for exhibition and display were added to the simple forms that echo the rhythm of Fassler’s original architecture.
National competition for the Johannesburg City Park Underutilised, derelict and abandoned land and buildings, on the periphery of the CBD of Johannesburg, are knitted together in a vast continuous urban amenity as an attractor for investment. The scheme proposed using the capital of government creatively to stimulate investment, provide inner city housing and grow a greater rates base for further development.
South African Institute of Architects, President’s Award for the Mpumalanga Provincial Government Complex Art Works Programme. “A key contributing element to the architectural richness of the new Mpumalanga Provincial Legislature was a comprehensive artworks programme… An earnest attempt to integrate the influence of local communities, this project needs to be recognized as a contribution to integrate a modern approach with traditional influences.” (Awards SAIA, 2008: 78)
Winning entry in the competition for design of the University of Pretoria Student Housing. The student housing was designed as clusters of eight rooms around a communal cooking and recreational space. The clusters formed modules of buildings that created a village-like townscape in the university precinct.
South African Institute of Architects Merit Award for the Ekurhuleni Council Chamber. “In time the new will read as if it had always been there and yet distinguishable from what was old. A cleverly engineered and crafted new steel structure is elegantly and delicately integrated into the design. Technically, from both the structural and servicing point of view, the design is outstanding, and the execution exceptional.” (artefacts.co.za [accessed, 2019/04/18])
GIFA Award of Merit for the Ekurhuleni Council Chamber. “The project incorporates a new council chamber within the old civic centre, while retaining the library and the clinic of the old complex. Architecturally, the new insertion is not so much a contrast to the old but a counterpoint – the difference being that the former is bold and with an urban presence, the latter a quiet surprise, but creating an integrated whole of the old and new.” (artefacts.co.za [accessed, 2019/04/18])
Winning entry in the competition for the design of the new Central Electricity Board Head Office, Mauritius. Playing on the notion of energy, this head office building provided a “holistic environmental response with efficient servicing appropriate finishes and a rational structure leading to an integrated solution to its form.” Patrick McInerney
South African Institute of Architects Merit Award for the Mpumalanga Provincial Government Complex. “There is however a consistency of merit in the making of this building. It is well integrated into its site, taking full advantage of a unique landscape, and in turn through the opportunities offered in the design allowing for the extension of the natural into both designed and hard landscaping.” (artefacts.co.za [accessed, 2019/04/18])
Shortlisted for the SAPOA Award for Innovative Excellence in Property Development for the Mpumalanga Provincial Government Complex. “Anchored by the Mpumalanga Provincial Government Complex … the master planning together with urban design controls and management at Riverside Park have resulted in an attractive yet functional mixed use node that does the capital city of Nelspruit proud and continues to contribute towards Nelspruit’s strong economic growth.” (Property Developer, 2014: 29)
Local competition for the University of Johannesburg Theatre and Gallery Tucked into the landscape with its few vertical elements, marking a new entrance to the University of Johannesburg, the large programme is hidden in a complex interplay of public access, gallery dance studios and theatre, which create a variety of ground planes for student engagement.
International competition for the Mauritius Police Training College - Ebene Mauritius An interesting interplay between the volcanic mountains of central Mauritius results from the careful approach to siting and campus planning which creates village clusters, using simple building forms, to achieve a series of public spaces and routes that encourage interaction and engagement.
Mpumalanga Institute of Architects Merit Award for the Mpumalanga Provincial Government Complex. “The building is well detailed and inventively crafted. The domed assembly hall is a tour de force, both in terms of structural ingenuity and spatial configuration. The ceiling as a crafted object is spectacular and the chronology tapestry – an addition proposed by the designers - a national treasure. (artefacts.co.za, accessed [2019/04/18])
Mpumalanga Provincial Government Complex shortlisted for a World Architecture Award. “A holistic approach was adopted to achieve a human scale for this huge complex. The shape of the land was used to reduce the impact of the buildings on the environment.” (Planning, Planning, 2001: 48)
Finalist Nedbank/Mail & Guardian 2000 Green Trust Awards for the Integrated Urban Design Framework for Marabastad. “The study, rich in historic and legislative background, and in the outcome of community participation, contributes too in bringing back an African quality to the city street and neighbourhood.” (South African Architect, 1999:29)
SA Architect Project Award for outstanding achievement for the Integrated Urban Design Framework for Marabastad. “This is an outstanding product, having all the qualities which distinguish an award winning entry… [and] is in many ways a seminal work in healing this country’s cities.” (South African Architect, 1999:29)
Winning entry in the competition for design of the new Parliamentary Offices for the Republic of Botswana, Gaborone. The competition was called by the government of Botswana. In its clarity of purpose within the pre-existing urban context, the design was influenced by the ideas of Louis Khan and aimed at restructuring and strengthening the government precinct within the city by providing a logical termination of the axis that runs through the old mall.
Winning entry in an invited competition for the Coalfields Medical Aid Society offices.
Winning entry in the competition for design of the Mpumalanga Government Complex. “Representing the architecture of a new democratic structure in a modern technologically advanced manner yet representing the spirit of the African people who have resided here for over 1500 years.” (Planning, 2001: 46)
South African Institute of Architects Merit Award for Sandton Square Urban Design. “In a city where there are few usable public spaces where people can explore civic pleasures and responsibilities, Sandton square has provided a beginning. Hopefully this is just the start of a trend to re-establish the city as a forum for the development of public culture.” (SA Architect, 1998:46)
South African Institute of Architects Merit Award for the Edenvale Library. “In retrospect the building evolved successfully, being aesthetically of the best and an important acquisition for the community. It is without doubt the finest building in the town and the staff believe that it is one of the, if not the, finest public libraries in the country.” Stella Wilkins – Edenvale Library chief librarian
South African Institute of Architects Merit Award for the Sandton Library. “The choice of building of this nature as a library is unusual … [but] the design … has come about by applying the constraints of the site to the criteria needed for a good library and public facility.” (Planning, 1994: 47)
Institute of Steel Construction Award for the Sandton Library. “The building emanates a unique sense of place and has a potential to become the unconfoundable symbol of its locality. A clear example of architecture mediating between the world as we find it and the world as we wish it to be.” (artefacts.co.za [accessed, 2019/04/18])
International Award of Merit for Urban Design-Excellence bestowed by the International Downtown Association, USA, for the Alberton Boulevard Project. “Here we created an urban revolution by closing the main traffic route through Alberton, in order to remove the heavy traffic that was polluting the area. It was almost open heart surgery for the city, as we created a large bypass for the traffic, and pedestrianised streets on a large scale.” François Pienaar
South African Institute of Architects Merit Award for the Standard Bank Centre Gallery. “Recently the conversion of the former Commercial Exchange building on the corner of Simmonds and Frederick Streets in the city, was completed, to provide the Standard Bank with premises for its archives, exhibition space, an art gallery and facilities for music recitals.” (Planning, 1990: 34)
South African Institute of Architects Merit Award for the Johannesburg Technical College. “The design hinged upon the urban context of the college, where we removed various buildings to create a green band, that became the spine of this internally focused scheme.” François Pienaar
South African Institute of Architects Conservation Award for renovation to the Johannesburg Art Gallery by Sir Edwin Lutyens. The wings of the Johannesburg Art Gallery “accept that [historical] footprint uncompromisingly but reinterpret it … and they allow it to be more clearly understood in its historical context and at the same time are themselves [the wings] rendered more comprehensible.” (Architecture SA, 1987: 40)
Invited by the American Institute of Architects to submit work to an international exhibition in the USA. “We were invited to submit work for a Retrospective Exhibition for Louis Khan, specifically from the old scholars of the master’s degree class that studied under him. We sent the model of the Johannesburg Art Gallery that had just been completed and Willie Meyer and I went to the exhibition in the USA.” François Pienaar
Winning entry in an invited competition for the design of the New Library for Edenvale. “Public response has been overwhelming … The main aim, to create a ‘home from home’, has been fully realised.” (Construction, 1994: 31)
“The Durban City Council recently announced the winner of its national architectural competition for the design of the city’s new cultural complex … These winners were selected from seven runners which included … Meyer Pienaar Smith Moren Inc, Johannesburg.” (Planning, 1989: 23)
South African Institute of Architects Merit Award for the Johannesburg Art Gallery. “In summary, the lesson of the building is in its most successful part – the wings. They accept that footprint unsurprisingly but reinterpret it so that the historical structure remains, but … new spatial possibilities construct forms which allow a perceptual dialogue with the original.” (Architecture SA, 1987: 40)
South African Institute of Architects Merit Award for the Vaal Triangle Technikon Library. The campus masterplan, laid out as a grid, forms a holding structure made of multi-levelled circulation routes into which the individual faculties were inserted. Within the resultant interplay of open and closed spaces for student interaction, the new library acts as a major focal point.
International Competition for Design of Hong Kong University of Science & Technology (in association with PSI and Rocco Yim Architects) - one of three finalists. “This international competition had more than 300 entrants and Meyer Pienaar was happy to learn that we ended up as finalists among so many. Politics may have played a role in not winning the competition outright, but to have been considered was an honour in itself.” François Pienaar
Crystal Awards Merit Award for design achievement. “Two projects supported the citation nominating architects François Pienaar, Floris Smith and Willie Meyer of Meyer Pienaar and Partners Inc. One was the Johannesburg Art Gallery and the other the Krugersdorp Civic Centre.” (Planning, 1987: 68)
South African Institute of Architects Merit Award for House Meyer. “After returning from his travels to Iran in the mid 1970s, Willie Meyer designed his own house based on the courtyard lifestyle that he saw there. The materials used, such as the bricks and the patina, are all reminiscent of Iran.” François Pienaar
South African Institute of Architects Merit Award for the Everard Read Gallery. “The Meyer-Pienaar collaboration produced an outstanding example of post-modern architecture which has led to the Everard Gallery becoming a much admired landmark in Rosebank, described by the gallery owners as having cosmopolitan and energetic qualities that this fantastic city has to offer.” Andrew David Harrison
South African Institute of Architects Merit Award for the Student Centre, Potchefstroom University. “The centre has created successful nucleus for meetings and social gatherings. This was achieved by very good pedestrian connections with the rest of the campus.” (Architecture SA, 1981: 2)
South African Institute of Architects Merit Award for Government Buildings, Mmabatho. “Die opdrag het gevra vir oop kantoorbeplanning omdat dit, onder andere, buigsaamheid in die verskuiwing van departement vergemaklik. … daar is gepoog om menslike skaal en ‘n gevoel van identiteit aan die uitlegte te gee.” (Architecture SA, 1979:47)
South African Institute of Architects Merit Award for the Hazyview Church Competition. “Die doelwit gestel is om te poog om ‘n kerkgeboukompleks te skep wat deur sy fisiese gestalte die kerkganger tot ‘n verhewe bewustheid sal stimuleer.” (Architecture SA, 1979: 49).
Prize as one of three winners out of 601 entrants from 80 countries in the international competition for the Pahlavi National Library, Tehran, Iran. “The Pahlavi Library was designed to be sensitive to the climate and its surrounding context. It also had a deep level of historicity in terms of materials and form that allowed it to create various interesting spaces, such as the large domes in the building.” François Pienaar
South African Institute of Architects Merit Award for the Rand Afrikaans University. “What standards would we have achieved without the urge to explore nature, to analyse our environment, to improve given conditions and to make progress… It is a basic human activity to explore, it is a necessity to teach and by doing so transmit the findings and knowledge gained in the past – for a better future.” (Planning, 1973: 31)
South African Institute of Architects Merit Award for the Potchefstroom University Sports Building. “This project was completed in partnership with Bannie Britz, because the Meyer Pienaar office was extremely busy with the Rand Afrikaans University at the time and needed some help to be able to work on the Potchefstroom University buildings.” François Pienaar
South African Institute of Architects Merit Award for Sanlam Housing. “The overall plan tried to find a layout which would give variety of spatial experiences but at the same time create a central ‘activity zone’ which everybody has to get involved with and thereby identify himself with the place he is living in.” (Planning, 1975: 29)
First prize in an international competition for the Germiston Civic Centre. “Professor Alwyn Burger from the University of Pretoria was the main adjudicator for this important international competition. We worked with Gerhard Hattingh and Silvio Bufler on this project and it was influenced by the designs of Alvar Alto.” François Pienaar
South African Institute of Architects Merit Award for the Rand Afrikaans University Student Housing . “The Transvaal Provincial Institute of Architects made awards to the following buildings as being of exceptional merit: The Rand Afrikaans University Student House… .” (Architect and Builder, 1973: 30)
South African Institute of Architects Merit Award for House Robinson. “This was one of the first projects on which Willie Meyer and Glen Gallagher collaborated, and it was interesting because it was positioned right at the top of Linksfield Ridge. The design was inspired by Louis Khan and the property contained a stone wall built by Ghandi.” François Pienaar