Island architecture dominates best building awards

Eye-catching holiday homes on the Borve Estate in Harris
Eye-catching holiday homes on the Borve Estate in Harris

Islands architecture dominates the shortlist for the best building in the Highlands and Islands this year.

Four of the six nominations for the Highlands and Islands Design Awards 2012 Open Award for Best Building are from the Northern Isles and Western Isles.

The awards are organised by the Inverness Architectural Association (IAA), the chapter of the Royal Incorporation of Architects which covers the Highlands and Islands, and held every two years to raise awareness of the importance of good design and architecture.

Members of the public were given the opportunity to vote for the Open Award for buildings completed between January 2010 and January 2012.

SBA Architects’ eye-catching holiday homes on the Borve Estate in Harris – one a tower inspired by traditional brochs, the other a long, low cottage set into a rock terrace – are joined on the list by a distinctive house inspired by various indigenous building traditions at Linsiadar, Uig, in the Isle of Lewis.

The winners of the best building and best use of timber awards will be announced on Friday 9th November along with the overall winners of the regional awards in the new building, new life for old buildings, innovation and place making categories.

These will be chosen from the winners in six areas announced earlier in the year – the North Isles; North Highlands including Caithness and Sutherland; the Western Highlands including Skye, Lochalsh, Wester Ross and Lochaber; Central Highlands including Inverness, Easter Ross, Nairn, and parts of Badenoch and Strathspey; Moray; and the Western Isles.