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Prize-winning London pavilion built with high-tech Austrian concrete

2. March 2009

The winning entry in the annual Architectural Association School's pavilion competition 'AADRL TenPointZero' was constructed technology and expertise from Austrian concrete products manufacturer, Rieder. The advanced technology concrete structure was erected in Bedford Square.

The Architectural Association School of Architecture London is one of the leading architectural schools worldwide and to mark the 10-year anniversary of the AA's Design Research Laboratory, the organisation hosted a pavilion competition. The competition was open to all students and graduates of the DRL. The goal of this competition was to design temporary, small-scale building project, which made innovative use of Fibre C, a glass fibre-reinforced concrete panelling material produced by Austrian company Rieder . Entrants were asked to explore:

1) the thinness of fibre-reinforced concrete panels and their structural potential
2) the possibility of achieving non-standard forms either by using flat panels in inventive ways or by developing a smart and efficient means to produce 3D curved panels
3) the use of panellised materials to create a coherent structural system

The winning entry, [C]SPACE was designed and developed by Alan Dempsey and Alvin Huang. Their experimental design was chosen anonymously from 28 entries by invited jurors and was selected based on the following points: constructability within a tight schedule and budget, simplicity and elegant form, effective use of material, pavilion as a continuous extension of furniture to roof structure.

Similar to other traditional concrete products, [fibre C] goes through a series of transformations during its manufacturing process, changing from a thick and wet material to a rock-solid structural board. The technology and production processes of glassfibre-concrete have been perfected for decades and tested practically for more than 30 years.

Following a workshop at Rieder's headquarters in Kolbermoor in Austria, AA DRL students are now working on a second pavilion project. The winning pavilion will be on display at the Ecobuild show.

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