The ten winners of the 2011 Emporis Skyscraper Award have been announced with New York City's 8 Spruce Street tower taking home the top place. The winners were chosen from over 220 skyscrapers completed in 2011. Now in its 12th year, the award program rewards ten skyscrapers completed in the previous calendar year.
8 Spruce Street, Frank Gehry's first skyscraper, also known as The Beekman or New York by Gehry, won over the jury with its magnificent undulating stainless steel facade. Commenting on the choice, the jury said: "8 Spruce Street stands out even in Manhattan's already remarkable skyline. It is a major new architectural landmark for New York."
The building is now the third New York tower to win the Emporis Skyscraper Award. The very first award (2000) went to Sofitel New York Hotel, while Hearst Tower won the coveted architecture prize for 2006. That makes New York City, the world capital of high-rise architecture, the city to which the Emporis Skyscraper Award has most often been awarded.
The sculptured form of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill's Al Hamra Tower earned it second place in the ranking. Despite its great height, the skyscraper fits harmoniously into Kuwait City's urban landscape. The tower is engineered to take account of climate conditions: the south facade, with limestone elements cladding a concrete wall, protects the building from the searing desert sun and impressed the jury from both architectural and functional points of view.
DBI Design's Etihad Towers were voted into third place, the jury praising the complex as a particularly harmonious ensemble of buildings. Critical to the decision were the soft, curving contours of the towers: these suggest the shape of sails and are intended to evoke Abu Dhabi's history as a port. The jury of experts also singled out the exceptional facade of silver and blue glass.
Here are the winners of places 4 through 10: