Kaunitz Yeung Architecture have added yet another accolade for their design of the Puntukurnu Aboriginal Medical Services Healthcare Hub in Newman, Western Australia, taking out the Health Care/Hospitals category at the 2021 International Architecture Awards.
The world’s oldest global architecture awards for new buildings and urban planning projects, the International Architecture Awards seeks to showcase projects that inspire change in world architecture.
The awards are organised by The Chicago Athenaeum: Museum of Architecture and Design and The European Centre for Architecture Art Design and Urban Studies. Museum President/CEO of The Chicago Athenaeum Christian Narkiewicz-Laine, says the awards give an appreciation to the world’s offerings in an architectural sense.
“For over 16 years, The Chicago Athenaeum’s global architecture awards champion buildings that change the world,” he says.
“The International Awards for Excellence are presented to an ambitious and diverse range of projects from a wide range of established and upcoming architects’ practices. It is particularly important to be considering excellence in architecture at this time—in this fast changing world, where governments, clients and society need the skills and insight of architects.”
Renowned worldwide for their people-first approach and working in more than 30 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island communities, 200 Pacific Island communities and in Asia, Kaunitz Yeung Architecture are no strangers to critical acclaim. The practice’s Director, David Kaunitz, says the Newman Health Clinic is the culmination of more than a decade of working and living in remote Aboriginal communities and integrates design, sustainability, clinical and prefabrication techniques from several earlier projects.
“We believe best practice buildings should be available to all Australians and are thrilled that the Newman Health Clinic has been recognised in two award categories in such a prestigious, international environment,” he says.
“This recognition highlights that high quality, international award-winning architecture is not a matter of cost, but commitment and true collaboration with the people for whom the buildings are being designed and built for.
“The work we do has set new benchmarks for working in and with Aboriginal communities and demonstrates what is possible when true collaboration takes place. We have learnt so much over the years from working with Aboriginal communities and our clients and without their belief, wisdom and generosity, this outcome would not have been possible.”
Commissioned by the Puntukurnu Aboriginal Medical Services (PAMS) and located 12000 kilometres north of Perth in the remote town of Newman, the clinic has been well received in the community with over 12,000 patient visits since its opening in July 2020.
A 150kW rooftop photovoltaic system delivering the largest solar power rooftop in the area is a standout feature providing close to 100% solar energy and saving PAMS thousands in operating costs.
“The respectful and collaborative approach by Kaunitz Yeung Architecture with the Martu Elders and communities has created a deep sense of ownership and pride in this health centre amongst the local community,” says Robby Chibawe, CEO of PAMS.
“Designing, creating and delivering a new building on time and within a tight budget is hard enough, let alone in the midst of global pandemic, but David and his team did just that with an abundance of professionalism and care.”
The awards program will be officially celebrated at “The City and the World” Exhibition and Gala Reception in Athens, Greece next month.