A three-year-old Winnipeg firm is making waves in North American architecture circles after winning two prestigious awards in the last three months. The latest accolade for the firm with the unusual name — 5468796 Architecture Inc. — is a P/A (progressive architecture) Award from U.S.-based Architect Magazine.
The magazine handed out only nine P/A awards this year, and 5469796 was the only Canadian firm to receive one. It was for its design of the BGBX condominium development on Wall Street in Winnipeg. The other is a Canadian Architect Award of Merit from Canadian Architect magazine for its design of the You Cube condominium project on north Waterfront Drive. Ten of the Canadian awards were given out at the end of 2009, and 5468796 was the only Manitoba recipient.
5468796 co-founder Johanna Hurme said winning the U.S. Architect Magazine award was especially gratifying because there were more than 300 entries from around North America. “And some of the other architects that received awards are guys we studied in school,” she said. “So it’s a really big deal.”
They’ll receive the Architect Magazine award at a ceremony Wednesday in New York City. It recognizes unbuilt projects that excel in design quality and ingenuity. BGBX is designed after a big-box retail development, with six blocks of alternating two- and three-storey loft condos. The 24 condos face an interior courtyard featuring lush foliage and water cisterns and bioswales to collect run-off water. The courtyard walls will be hand painted with pixelated images of trees.