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Student awards

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University of Bristol’s winning Structures design

This year’s BCSA/Tata Steel Student Awards, organised by the Steel Construction Institute were presented prior to the SSDA ceremony held in London on 11 July.

Started 24 years ago to acknowledge excellence in steel design among undergraduates, the awards also encourage innovative design skills for tomorrow’s project engineers and architects.

Entrants are expected to demonstrate individuality and flair, in addition to showing an understanding of structural and architectural design.

The Student Awards were divided into three steel categories – Structures, Bridges and architectural.

For the Structures category students were required to design a building, in a Gulf state, enclosing a golf driving range. This would be a vast structure and the first of its kind in the world. The project also had to incorporate an iconic structure shaped like a giant golf ball.

The University of Bristol’s Sam Watson and Jonathan Stokes receive their awards from the evening’s host Helen Fospero

The Structures first prize went to the University of Bristol (team members: Oliver Teall, Sam Watson, Jos Van Der Boom and Jonathan Stokes), with the University of Nottingham coming second and third place going to Queen’s University Belfast.

The University of Bristol’s design was inspired by an oyster shell for the range and a pearl for the golf ball building.

An array of arched trusses supported a lightweight frame roof achieving a 400m clear internal span. A 50m tall geodesic frame achieved the spherical pearl structure.

The winning Bridges design, from Queen’s University, Belfast

Bridges winners Queen’s University Belfast

In the Bridges category students had to design a structure to carry a twin track railway over an existing motorway and adjacent rail line. The bridge would form part of a new high speed railway line linking two major UK cities.

The Bridges category was won by Queen’s University Belfast (team members: Ronan Sweeney, Conor Casey, Conor Woods and Niall Mellon), second place went to Cardiff University and the University of Manchester claimed third prize.

Queen’s University Belfast’s design was for a tied arch bridge to span 168m. The submission demonstrated it to be the most structurally efficient option with the lowest initial cost when compared with alternative designs.

Hat trick in Architectural award competition

All three prizes in the Architecture Student Design competition went to the Manchester School of Architecture, with Jodi McLeod (pictured) taking first place.  The competition required students to design a long span building to house a new medium sized international airport terminal. The judging panel, chaired by Chris Nash of Grimshaw architects, included Stuart Piercy of Piercy & Co. architects, Tim Lucas of Price & Myers, Murray Bean of Tata Steel and David Bonnett of David Bonnett Associates. The designs needed to deal with basic requirements for air travel, such as a departures lounge, baggage and check in desks, retail outlets and security zones. All of the terminal’s facilities had to address the overall airport experience and contribute, architecturally, to making passenger journeys better.

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