Awards were given out to young architects in recognition of their talents as well as design awards, under the categories of Excellence Awards, Merit Awards, Colour Awards and for Research and Publication for the members of the SLIA.
Architects (SLIA) held its 27th annual sessions recently with the inauguration of Architect 2009 Trade Exhibition. The ceremony began with a procession of council members, past presidents and distinguished guests. The Guests of Honour for this event were Dinesh Gunawardena (MP), Minister of Urban Development and Sacred Area Development, Dr Rajitha Senaratne (MP), Minister of Construction and Engineering Services and Ferial Ashraff (MP), Minister of Housing and Common Amenities. A host of distinguished guests from the architecture fraternity also attended. Prof Mohan Munasinghe who was the Vice Chairman of the United Nations Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPPCC), which won the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize, was the keynote speaker for the ceremony. The key highlight of the annual sessions was the taking over the chain of office by Architect Chandana Edirisuriya as the new President of the SLIA at the Annual General Meeting. He takes over the reigns of the Institute from Architect Jayantha Perera, the immediate past president of SLIA and the new chairman of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation of Architects (SAARCH). The Architect 2009 Trade Fair and Exhibition, was an unprecedented success. A cross section of visitors visited the exhibition, where over 300 stalls showcased a wide range of the latest products and services in the market. The career guidance centre was also a large attraction, with prospective students visiting to get further information on what architecture as a career entails. This was followed by the Annual Awards Ceremony, where the newly elected members of the SLIA were presented with their scrolls. Three special awards were presented at the event to Vidyajothi Architect Ashley De Vos, Architect Prof Lal Balasuriya and Architect Ole B Larsen. Vidyajothi Architect Ashley De Vos, was recognised for his lifetime contribution to architecture as well as eco-friendly design and Architect Prof Lal Balasuriya, Past President, SLIA was presented with the Honorary Fellowship of the SLIA. Architect Ole B Larsen who owns one of the leading practices in the Sultanate of Oman, was honoured for his recognition of Sri Lankan architects at his practice where majority of the architects are Sri Lankan and members of the SLIA. Awards were given out to young architects in recognition of their talents as well as design awards, under the categories of Excellence Awards, Merit Awards, Colour Awards and for Research and Publication for the members of the SLIA. Stallholders at the Architect 2009 Trade and Exhibition fair were also recognised under the Product Awards segment, whose aim is to evaluate and encourage local products. The Architect 2009 Fellowship Night was also held recently, with the participation of the distinguished architectural fraternity. The national conference, under the theme of ‘Doing more with less,’ was held with Patali Champika Ranawaka, Minister of Environment and Natural Resources as the Chief Guest. The keynote speaker at the event was the internationally renowned Architect Karan Grover, who was the first architect to design a Platinum rated green building outside the United States. The conference was enlivened by a host of internationally acclaimed guest speakers which included Engineer Mario Seneviratne, Current Secretary General of the World Green Building Council and Architect Indika Samarasinghe who designed the first Platinum rated renovation of a building outside the United States for Brandix in Sri Lanka. The focus of their presentations was the significance of further encouraging the development of the green building initiative in Sri Lanka. The Council meeting of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation of Architects (SAARCH), was also held recently and was attended by all presidents of the architects’ institutes in the SAARC region.