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Mæ Architects tipped for Stirling Prize victory as bookies’ odds shorten

Bookmaker William Hill has shortened its odd on Mae Architects' Sands End Arts and Community Centre in Fulham to win this year’s Stirling Prize

The west London scheme, built with engineered wood and specialist bricks created from construction waste, is now being offered at just 6/4 - a drop from its original price of 3/1. This means the bookies think its early favourite, based on the recent betting patterns, has become more likely to scoop the highest accolade in UK architecture when it is announced next week.

However, close behind it in William Hill's latest rankings, is Níall McLaughlin Architects’ Magdalene College in Cambridge, which has stormed into second place. The practice, which has been nominated three times previously for the prize, has seen its odds slashed from 4/1 to 2/1.

Panter Hudpsith’s Orchard Gardens scheme in Elephant and Castle the bookies’ original second favourite on the six-strong shortlist has slipped from 7/2 to 7/1.

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Henley Halebrown’s Hackney New Primary School and 333 Kingsland Road has also lost ground, its odds dropping from 4/1 to 9/2, while Hopkins Architects’ revamp of a 1980s office block on the Broadgate campus at Liverpool Street has fallen back to 7/1.

According to William Hill, Forth Valley College, Falkirk Campus in Scotland, by Reiach and Hall Architects is the outsider to win the prize, with lengthening odds of 9/1.

Last year’s Stirling Prize went to Grafton Architects’ Kingston University Town House. The six-storey, multipurpose higher education building in south-west London had not been William Hill's favourite to win, with the scheme priced at at 5/1. Instead, it favoured Marks Barfield's Cambridge Central Mosque with odds of 7/4.

Announcing the 2022 finalists in July, RIBA president Simon Allford said all six gave ‘cause for optimism’ and offered innovative solutions in the face of the housing, energy and climate crises.

He said: ‘From major capital city regeneration programmes to new visions for higher education, they all share the ambition to deliver generous architecture fit for a low-carbon future.

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‘All six buildings are informed by close consultation and collaboration with clients, contractors and the community. The result: outstanding and welcoming architecture that lifts the spirit of all who engage with it.'

The Stirling Prize finalists were chosen from the RIBA’s 29 national award winners. The overall winner will be announced on Thursday 13 October at the RIBA, 66 Portland Place, London.

Last week the RIBA also unveiled the contenders for its Client of the Year award. The four-strong list includes two of the clients behind this year’s Stirling Prize finalists, namely British Land for Hopkins Architects' 100 Liverpool Street and Thornsett Group Plc and The Benyon Estate for Hackney New Primary School and 33 Kingsland Road by Henley Halebrown Architects.

The others are Balliol College for Masters Field Development by Stirling contenders Níall McLaughlin Architects and the London Borough of Sutton for Harris Academy, Sutton by Architype.

Sands End Arts and Community Centre, London by Mæ Architects: William Hill's favourite to win the 2022 RIBA Stirling Prize (as of 14 September): 3/1

RIBA 2022 Stirling shortlist odds (3 October)

6/4 • Sands End Arts and Community Centre, London (by Mæ Architects): a welcoming, fully accessible single-storey building arranged around a disused lodge comprising flexible activity spaces and a community café.

2/1The New Library, Magdalene College, Cambridge (by Níall McLaughlin Architects): an exquisitely detailed timber-framed library and study space, designed to replace that previously gifted by Samuel Pepys and projected to survive for another 400 years

9/2 • Hackney New Primary School and 333 Kingsland Road, London (by Henley Halebrown): a striking red-brick complex that uniquely combines affordable housing with a new primary school for the growing east London community.

7/1 • Orchard Gardens, Elephant Park, London (by Panter Hudspith Architects): a playful cluster of buildings forming a new city block of 228 new homes and retail spaces wrapped around a communal garden – a major element of Elephant and Castle’s regeneration programme.

7/1100 Liverpool Street, London (by Hopkins Architects): a net zero development encompassing a dramatic renovation and extension of a 1980s office block to create a suite of offices and commercial and public spaces in the heart of London’s financial district.

9/1Forth Valley College – Falkirk Campus, Scotland (by Reiach and Hall Architects): a set of three cutting-edge higher-education facilities connected by courtyards and open learning spaces.

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2 comments

  1. 100 Liverpool Street is the clear winner here

  2. Weirder and weirder.

    As impressive as Sands End Arts and Community Centre is ( and also maybe 100 Liverpool Street) if the New Library, Magdalene College, does not win hands down then the whole shebang is flawed.

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