Very few people have ever seen pink flamingos or been to a Flamingo visitor centre. Yet, fortunately, a new Flamingo visitor centre competition launched for Wathba Wetland Reserve. Located southeast of central Abu Dhabi. Each autumn 4000 flamingos flock to this reserve in addition to many more species.
Bee Breeder architecture competitions and Abi Dhabi Environmental Agency announced the Abu Dhabi Flamingo Visitor Centre competition. So that people can visit the site and see 260 species of birds and other wildlife. The Wetland Reserve is a protected area. Therefore, the jury expected design proposals that strongly consider the reserve’s fragile ecosystem.
First prize – “To See And Not To Be Seen”
Petr Janda, Anna Podroužková and Kateřina Tšponová from the Czech Republic won the first prize. The project structure, circulation, and form do serve significantly the concept of not being seen by the flamingos on the wetland reserve.
Second Prize – Incubator
Designed by Wenqi Huang and Yi Yan from the US. The architects created an adoptable building to the desert climate and opened up the shell dramatically from above to serve both climate design concept and function.
Third Prize – The Dune
Laurent Herbiet and Giordana Rojas from Mexico won the third prize for “The Dune” project. Designed to imitate the natural dune landscape and organic shape. Seeking to act as a portal for the visitor rather than dominating the site.
Egyptian Participation – Honorable mention
Abdallah Mekkawi and Adberlrahman Adel – Egyptian architects – project “A HELIX INTO THE HORIZON,” has Won an Honourable mention prize.
The two young Egyptians have over four years of experience in the architecture and integrated community development field. Moreover, they work on ideas that they believe can bridge the gap between vernacular and contemporary architecture.
“A HELIX INTO THE HORIZON” design concept aims to demonstrate the reserve’s unique environment and create an adaptable building. Allowing the visitor to get a unique experience and interact with nature without any disturbance to the animal and plant life.
Certainly, the elevated structure concept served two ideas. First, to enable the visitors to see the reserve from above. Second, not to impair the reserve view, by lifting the center using thin wooden columns. Also, the void and openings of the building served the concept greatly.
For more details about the honorable mentions and shortlisted project check bee breeders official competition website.