Greater Cambridge Design and Construction Awards
Photos: The Works (photo by Nick Guttridge), Brewhouse at Peterhouse (photo by Giles Quarme Architects), and Magdalene College (photos by Nick Kane) – all winners in 2022.
Greater Cambridge Design and Construction Awards
Together with our sponsors, Cambridge Forum for the Construction Industry (CFCI), we have held design awards annually since 1988. The awards celebrate best practices in the design and construction of our built environment alongside the individuals and teams involved. The awards aim to champion projects of all sizes, types and complexities, and this year will include an award for Best New Neighbourhood. The awards will be announced at an in-person event in March 2023.
There were additional submission requirements to those of previous years, including a statement on the contractor’s performance and a sustainability/engineering statement.
Please note that the 2023 Greater Cambridge Design Construction Awards have now closed for nominations. Award winners will be announced in a ceremony in March 2023.
Awards Categories 2023
- Best New Neighbourhood
- Best New Building (under £2m construction costs)
- Best New Building (over £2m construction costs)
- Best Conservation, Alteration, or Extension of an Existing Building (under £2m construction costs)
- Best Conservation, Alteration, or Extension of an Existing Building (over £2m construction costs)
- David Mackay Award for Engineering and Sustainability
- Craftsmanship Award
- Contractor Award
- Young Professional of the Year
- Apprentice of the Year
- Site Manager of the Year
Anyone can enter a project based in the greater Cambridge Shared Planning Service area. This includes Cambridge City and South Cambridgeshire. Projects should be recently completed (within the last 5 years) to be relevant to the judging criteria.
Entrants for the People Awards must work in the construction industry and related professions in the Cambridge and South Cambridgeshire area. Entrants for the Young Professional of the Year should be under 35 years of age on 1 January 2023. Entrants for the Apprentice of the Year must be enrolled on a formal apprenticeship, traineeship programme or vocational degree course on 1 January 2023.
Entrants for the awards should submit the following information for projects in any category:
- An application form - this confirms the category being entered
- 1-page written statement for each of the following (in PDF format):
- Outline the brief and response to the brief, including how the project considers the principles of inclusive design and contributes positively to society (where applicable)
- Information on the contractor’s contribution to the project's success (including any examples of innovation, sustainability measures, community engagement, and/or social value activities carried out by the contractor) and the type of contract (e.g. traditional / design and build)
- 2 page / 400-word statement (in PDF format) outlining any engineering excellence and/or highly sustainable outcomes (if available, this would include in-use energy data, embodied carbon analysis and/or certification)
- List of all organisations on the project team, including the client, contractor and all relevant consultants
- Min. of five and Max. 10 photographs (in JPEG format, min-width/height of 1000px, max. file size 10MB) - include the photographer’s name for copyright. Photographs should be uploaded as a single image (other than before / after photos) and illustrate the following:
- Interior, exterior, context and any specific details
- Wide shots and close-ups, and
- The project in use, if possible
Please note that submitted photographs will be used for promotion of the awards by the Greater Cambridge Shared Planning Service and the CFCI on their websites and will be displayed during the awards event; and
- Drawings to include the following:
- A location plan (1:1250)
- A site plan (clearly showing entrances, routes, and external spaces)
- Floor plans (clearly showing the main entrance)
- Two sections through the building
All projects submitted will be considered for the David Mackay Award for Engineering and Sustainability, Craftsmanship Awards and Contractor Award. Please note that shortlisted projects may be asked to provide additional information, although this will not be compulsory.
Shortlisted entrants will be contacted in the new year to organise site visits. We will also invite shortlisted projects to submit an A1 presentation board for exhibition on the awards evening and other events throughout the year.
Entrants for the People Awards, including Young Professional of the Year, Apprentice of the Year and Site Manager of the Year, must provide the following information (in Microsoft Word format):
- Contact details for the nominee and nominator
- Contact details for a referee (this could be a senior manager, client, consultant, or contractor). This person may be contacted and asked to provide a statement of support if the nominee is shortlisted
- Nominee biography (max. 400 words)
- Nominator response to the criteria (max. 800 words)
Please do not include a photograph. Photographs may be requested for shortlisted entrants, and if so, these will be used to promote the awards by the Greater Cambridge Shared Planning Service and the CFCI on their websites and will be displayed during the awards event.
New Neighbourhood Award
New neighbourhoods can be created at any scale from ten dwellings upwards and may include a range of locations from urban infill sites to green / brownfield development.
Projects will be assessed on how well they:
- make a demonstrable effort towards (net) carbon neutrality and mitigating climate change
- provide biodiversity net gain holistically on site
- are inclusively designed and accessible for all
- maximise positive impact on health, well-being, and other social outcomes
- evidence of community involvement where appropriate
- overcome site challenges in an innovative or creative way
- reflect best practice guidance on design issues such as context, identity, and resources
The project will be judged on the following criteria:
- Overall architectural merit
- Rigorous detailing
- Spatial experience
- Inclusive and accessible design
- Appropriateness to, and impact on, the wider context
- Contribution to the community
- Quality of workmanship
- Robustness and flexibility
- Environmental sustainability
- Appropriate structural design and servicing strategy
David Mackay Award for Engineering and Sustainability
David Mackay was the former Chief Scientific Advisor to the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) and Regius Professor of Engineering at the University of Cambridge. He was the author of ‘Sustainable Energy - Without the Hot Air and was instrumental in the forward-thinking brief for the Civil Engineering Building in West Cambridge.
This award is for projects demonstrating engineering excellence in civil, structural, mechanical and electrical, or construction engineering. They will be judged on how these matters have been addressed to a high standard in the scheme.
Specialist elements of construction exhibiting exceptional quality of workmanship, design, fabrication, and installation quality. The craftsmanship should demonstrate detailed knowledge of materials and show a high level of expertise applied with skill, delivering precision and beauty in work submitted for this award.
The new Contractor Awards will be assessed on the project team’s performance during construction (rather than on design quality), including the below criteria;
- Innovative construction techniques, processes or products (e.g. modern methods of construction) or new ways of working (e.g. innovative contract arrangements or programming or procurement approaches)
- Sustainable construction methods or products or sustainable approaches to procurement, employment, or improving sustainability during the whole life of the asset
- How the concerns/needs of the local community have been addressed/met, or where community benefit has been provided during the construction period? This may be through charitable work, engagement with local people, and contribution to local employment and/or education
The People Awards celebrate the achievements of individuals working in the construction industry, and related fields, in Cambridge and South Cambridgeshire. The awards are judged on a nominee's biography and a statement from a nominator and a referee. The three award categories have different judging criteria, set out below.
Young Professional of the Year
This award is to celebrate the achievements of professionals under the age of 35 on 1 January 2023 who have excelled in their professional fields. Nominations can come from all built environment industry sectors, including property, law, planning, construction, surveying and design. The submissions will be judged against the following criteria:
- Inspiring others: Being a positive role model and representing the future of the profession
- Collaboration and leadership: Excelling at working with others and showing leadership potential
- Innovation: Displaying original thinking, problem-solving abilities, the capacity to overcome challenges, taking positive action to reduce carbon emissions
- Anything else that makes this individual stand out as an exceptional young professional
Apprentice of the Year
This award recognises apprentices who have made a significant contribution to their workplaces and are enrolled on a formal apprenticeship, traineeship programme or vocational degree course on 1 January 2023. The submissions will be judged against the following criteria:
- Achievement: Carrying out work of exceptional quality, showing determination, personal development, contribution to a particular project, overcoming challenges
- Teamwork: Making an exceptional contribution to the workplace and
- Anything else that makes this individual stand out as an exceptional apprentice
Site Manager of the Year
This award recognises site managers' outstanding contributions, appreciating their pivotal role in the success of a project. The submission will be judged against the following criteria:
- Attention to detail: Achieving consistently high standards of workmanship, resolving technical issues, applying working methods to reduce carbon emissions during construction
- Collaboration: Leadership skills, subcontractor management and developing good relationships with clients and the community
- Health and Safety: Considering efficient controls and evidencing that the welfare of everyone is a priority
- Anything else that makes this individual stand out as an exceptional site manager
Our panel of judges includes representatives from the sponsor organisations and experts with knowledge of buildings in Cambridge and South Cambridgeshire District Council and their design and construction.
The judging process for the New Neighbourhood and Building Awards will include an initial selection of a shortlist of projects from the electronic submissions, followed by a site visit by the judges to those projects - early in the new year - and a final selection of winners and commendations to be announced at an awards evening in March 2023.
The David Mackay Award for Engineering and Sustainability, the Contractor Award and the Craftsmanship Award will be judged by the above judges. Please note that not all judges will attend the site visits.
The People Awards will be judged by a panel selected by the trustees of the CFCI.
- Emma Fletcher – CFCI Trustee
- Alison Wring – CFCI Trustee
- Isabel McTiffin – CFCI Trustee
- Adam Knaggs – CFCI Trustee
- Heather Jones – Strategic Lead 3C Shared Services Building Control - GCSPS
- Jane Green – Built and Natural Environment Manager – GCSPS
We look forward to receiving your entries. Thank you.
Best new building (over £2m)
New College Library, Magdalene College by Niall McLaughlin Architects
Project Atria, HLRI Building, Addenbrooke's Site entered by Munro Building Services
Civil Engineering Building, University of Cambridge by Grimshaw Architects
Highly Commended - WongAvery Gallery, Trinity Hall by Niall McLaughlin Architects
Commended – Northstowe Education Campus entered by the Keir Group
Best conservation, alteration or extension (under £2m construction costs)
The Brewhouse, Peterhouse by Giles Quarme Architects
Highly Commended – Monkey Roost, Stapleford by Owers Warwick Architects
Commended – Former Mill Road Library by Donald Insall Associates
Best conservation, alteration or extension (over £2m construction costs)
The Works, Pampisford by NBBJ
Highly Commended – United Reform Church, Downing Place by Archangel Architects
Commended – King’s College Hostel by Owers Warwick Architects
The David Mackay Award for engineering and sustainability
Civil Engineering Building, University of Cambridge by University of Cambridge, Grimshaw Architects, Max Fordham, Smith & Wallwork
New College Library, Magdalene College by Niall McLaughlin Architects
The Brewhouse, Peterhouse by Vince Thorby, Thorwood Construction
Highly Commended – WongAvery Gallery, Trinity Hall by Niall McLaughlin Architects
Commended – The Gables, Bartlow by Chadwick Dryer Clarke Studio