18th Century Mill wins architectural award for skyscraper innovation

An 18th Century mill seen as “grandparent” of the skyscraper has won an architectural award after being converted into a visitor centre.
Shrewsbury’s Flaxmill Maltings, built in 1797, has landed the accolade of West Midlands Building of the Year in The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA)’s annual awards.
Other winners included Warwick University’s biomedical research building and St. Mary Magdalene Church in Tanworth-in-Arden, where singer-songwriter Nick Drake is buried.
RIBA’s judges noted the mill was the world’s first iron-frame building – a building technique taken on in construction of the original skyscrapers.
The five-storey building is also now co-working space and visitors can learn about its history.
The judges also commended Warwick university’s Interdisciplinary Biomedical Research Building for having laboratories with tall windows and outside views that showed the changing seasons, creating spaces that were “not purely clinical”.
The building has five-storeys of laboratories, with each floor representing a theme such as neuroscience, and a 400-seat lecture theatre.
St. Mary Magdalene Church, in Tanworth has been awarded for a project that has made the Grade 1-listed building more accessible.
The judges noted that the project had boosted a “once decaying and under-used church, previously entered by steep steps”.
Dudley’s Black Country Museum also won an award for its new entrance building, for which architects had to navigate terrain that contained mine shafts.
Cwm Barn, an extra building added to the site of a family home in rural Herefordshire, was also awarded.
All five buildings will be submitted for national RIBA awards and the winners will be announced on 11 July.
Source: bbc.com

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