The £1 billion European headquarters for the media giant had not been the bookies’ favourite at any point before last night’s announcement at the Roundhouse in Camden, London.
Storey’s Field Community Centre and Eddington Nursery by MUMA for the University of Cambridge remained the clear frontrunner throughout the run-up to the prizegiving and was being offered at 10/3. The odds had not changed since the shortlist was announced on 19 July.
However despite an early flurry on the nursery (see Bookies’ report: money mounts up on MUMA to win RIBA Stirling Prize 2018), Bloomberg, which was offered at odds of 7/2, eventually attracted 38 per cent of the bets.
The biggest single bet on Foster + Partners’ City of London scheme was £100.
A spokesperson for William Hill, said: ’It was our worst result and predicted by a number of people; but [we only made] a small loss. It is a worthy winner.’
Shortlist in full (with odds by William Hill)
10/3 Storey’s Field Community Centre and Nursery, Cambridge by MUMA
7/2 Bloomberg, London by Foster + Partners
4/1 Bushey Cemetery, Hertfordshire by Waugh Thistleton Architects
4/1 New Tate St Ives, by Jamie Fobert Architects with Evans & Shalev
9/2 The Sultan Nazrin Shah Centre, Oxford by Níall McLaughlin Architects
11/2 Chadwick Hall, University of Roehampton, London by Henley Halebrown
Intriguingly, Bloomberg was the least popular shortlisted building among the AJ’s readers,with MUMA again the most heavily supported.
The Architects’ Journal is the professional media partner for the RIBA Stirling Prize.
Stirlnig aj reader vote
RIBA Stirling Prize 2018 shortlist analysis by AJ’s architecture editor Rob Wilson
It’s a strong, if slightly astringent, list of projects on the shortlist this year. There’s the usual culture and money mix, with a lack of housing and health, reflecting the RIBA Regional Awards, as does the geographical distribution – all Oxford, Cambridge and points south.
Jamie Fobert’s Tate St Ives is worthily here: for once a cultural building not as statement outside and neutrality in, but one infused with, and more than literally embedded in, the light and site of its locale.
Foster’s Bloomberg looms inevitably on the list: but it is a significant building and interesting take on the workplace. Its sheer muscularity no doubt will be seen as signature ‘late Foster’. The inclusion of these two projects underlines some significant omissions: AL_A’s V&A and Rogers’ Leadenhall: another sunken gallery and another big-beast City building. It’s perhaps a sign of the times that it’s the more expressive, hotly coloured examples that didn’t make the cut.
It would also have been good to have seen Amin Taha’s Clerkenwell Close here (perhaps not politic to have a housing scheme by him two years running?). But the more general and continuing lack of housing certainly raises a question about what the prize is designed to recognise. Is housing that makes the background warp and weft of a city not fit for a beauty parade?
What is refreshing is the strong community showing from MUMA’s Storey’s Field Community Centre and Eddington Nursery and Waugh Thistleton’s monument-like Bushey Cemetery, both beautifully tuned to their functions.
The renaissance in higher education is well reflected: Níall Mclaughlin’s very fine Nazrin Shah: a poised, sinuous, garden pavilion outside, flexible practical study spaces within.
More surprising, though, is the inclusion of Henley Halebrown’s Chadwick Hall, the finely wrought architecture of its façades not completely followed through to the interiors.
And the winner? I’d vote for the MUMA building, crafted to its use, that makes poetics out of the pragmatics of passive ventilation, and a landmark without show.
North west cambridge storeys field centre muma © alan williams 7