30 St Mary Axe in London (Great Britain) was chosen as the best new skyscraper of the year 2003 for design and functionality by a jury of this website's editors, who selected this building as winner of the Emporis Skyscraper Award 2003.
Emporis Skyscraper Award 2003
30 St Mary Axe is awarded first prize
30 St Mary Axe is a new landmark on the London skyline, a uniquely-shaped skyscraper which imparts a new character to the financial district in the "City" at the heart of London. This curving tower widens from the base to the 16th floor before closing in a graceful dome at the top, which holds a spectacular dining area. The geometry is highlighted by a spiraling facade pattern, with a mesh of diamond-shaped window panes forming light and dark bands that complement the tower's curves. Inside the tower, six triangular lightwells on each floor follow the dark bands on the facade.
At its base, 30 St Mary Axe gives the city a new 2000 square meter public plaza, enclosed by low stone walls. The building is entered through high triangular archways cut out of the facade, and the lobby is an elegant exercise in simple verticality with ridged aluminum walls that curve around a three-lobed elevator center.
The award presentation for 30 St Mary Axe was held on May 10, 2004. Runners-up for the Emporis Skyscraper Award 2003 were Highcliff in Hong Kong, designed by DLN Architects and Engineers; and Skybridge in Chicago, designed by Perkins & Will.