Award of Excellence – Civic Landscape: The Kaurna Learning Circle & Karrawirra Parinangku – University of Adelaide

This project by Oxigen Pty Ltd, pictured above and below, was one of several projects that AILA South Australia president Daniel Bennett said “strove towards a brighter, more inclusive future”.

The competition jury said the project, on the university’s North Terrace campus, was “a powerful act of reconciliation that recognises and celebrates Kaurna connection to the land, to time and place”.

“The historic Mitchell entry gates and spear-top fence that once bounded the site have been removed in a liberating gesture that unfolds onto the new entry with Wangu Poles that tell of ancient Kaurna stories through the artwork of Paul Herzich.”

Award of Excellence – Gardens: Salt Wind Garden

This small garden on the Carrickalinga foreshore, again by Oxigen, is based around small outdoor “rooms” connected with floating boardwalks and decks, using local materials.

“In recognition of Australian garden influences, the Salt Wind Garden receives an Award of Excellence for boldly ‘bucking the trend’. The Jury commended how this project unabashedly promotes a garden philosophy that has rigorously grasped the local condition and context. This includes masterfully using endemic planting and materials to enhance the local physical and cultural context.”

Award of Excellence – Health and Education Landscape: Woodcroft College ELC Outdoor Learning Area

This Swanbury Penglase project, which also won the People’s Choice Award, took a usually hidden piece of stormwater infrastructure and turned it into a feature. The dry creek fills after rain and provides a learning experience for students throughout the seasons.

“The Woodcroft ELC outdoor education spaces exemplify how creative thinking and leadership can overcome technical and compliance challenges. This creates an engaging, relevant and deceptively simple space to enhance children’s understanding of the seasons and environment. This learning space makes important infrastructure visible and enables children to explore water in nature through self-determination and risk-taking.”

Award of Excellence – Landscape Planning: Suburb Improvement Program Review – Greening Onkaparinga

This project by the City of Onkaparinga was awarded for its innovative and detailed work.

“The Suburb Improvement Program Review – Greening Onkaparinga demonstrates council’s ability to implement a detailed assessment of tree canopy cover, urban heat island mapping and social vulnerability in a highly graphic and digestible document which supports the most disadvantaged people within their community. The SIP is an exemplar of both process and outcome for local and national councils.”

Onkaparinga also won the President’s Award for its work, including other projects in the district.

Award of Excellence – Urban Design: Design King William

The project by the City of Unley with Outerspace Landscape Architects and BMD Group attracted some media controversy in the construction phase, but the jury praised its “inclusive” strategy of working with local people and traders, which it said paid off handsomely.

“Design King William sets a new benchmark in strategic co-design and community engagement, transforming a flagging retail strip into a stunning, people-centred high street. The result is a state-of-the-art street for 21st century living that offers a beautiful tree-lined boulevard with seamlessly integrated shared zones supported by smart technology.”

2021 Healthy Parks Healthy People South Australia Award: Tonsley Forests

Another project by Oxigen, this winning design created a green heart for the growing innovation district at Tonsley, in the former Mitsubishi plant.

“Tonsley Forests demonstrates a commitment by the State Government to create a new type of green public space in Adelaide as well as a new green heart of the former car manufacturing site. A new park creates a quiet place for immersion and contemplation, meeting and talking, and a place for people to discover a new type of making. Open to all, the innovative garden showcases how we can improve our relationships with buildings and courtyards, creating more resilient workplaces and communities.”

Go here for the full list of winners.

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