The award for the Middle East’s most promising young architect under the age of 35 was handed to Obada Adra, Atkins.
The judging panel for the 2011 Middle East Architecture Awards remarked that Adra has already made a name for himself in the region with stunning and inventive designs.
Adra commented: “It was a shock to win because there were so many really large names in the running for the title. I have been working for Atkins for four years now and prior to that, I was in Syria for two years. I didn’t expect to win at all and it’s great to get this kind of recognition.”
Adra particularly wanted to thank his mentor, Shaun Killa, head architect and design director. “I am really thankful to Shaun for what he has shown me. He has been a great mentor.”
Nominations for the Young Architect category needed to acknowledge the potential within the candidate and not just his or her demonstrated body of work.
The jury added: “Obada is a great asset to his company and this architect’s work shows a maturity which truly belies his age.”
Runner up Florian Oett from dwp was described as an architect to watch out for. The panel commented: “Florian’s hugely impressive portfolio contains a vast number of completed projects – a great achievement for a young architect.”
The three other architects on the shortlist were Fariborz Hatam from Aedas, Justin Beckermann from The Buchan Group and NORR Group’s Robert El Habre.