Statue of Unity shortlisted for UK-based structural award

Winner to be announced on November 15

August 05, 2019 03:30 am | Updated 05:06 am IST - Ahmedabad

Moment of pride: The Statue of Unity will join the likes of Sydney Opera House, Severn Bridge if it wins the awards. File

Moment of pride: The Statue of Unity will join the likes of Sydney Opera House, Severn Bridge if it wins the awards. File

The Statue of Unity, a memorial to Sardar Patel, in Gujarat’s Kevadia town has been shortlisted for ‘The Structural Awards 2019’ of the UK-based Institution of Structural Engineers (IStructE).

The 182-m-tall statue was unveiled by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on October 31 last year.

It is among the 49 structures that will vie for the prestigious award, according to the institution’s website. The awards will be announced at a function in London on November 15.

Other structures shortlisted for the award include a sports stadium with a roof made of rotating petals at Hangzhou in China, a 22-m-deep basement beneath a five-star hotel in London and buildings showcasing the world’s best seismic performance in San Francisco, according to the website.

‘Extraordinary innovation’

“Our profession has once again demonstrated extraordinary innovation over the past year. The 2019 shortlist offers many great examples of the ingenuity, creativity and skill of structural engineers worldwide,” professor Tim Ibell, head of the judging panel, said.

“One of the aims of this awards programme is to increase awareness of the important work that structural engineers do,” Martin Powell, chief executive of the institution, said.

Commenting on the Statue of Unity, the judging panel said, “This is an impressive sculpture by virtue of its scale and location. It put great demands on the engineers to conquer the challenges — defining the design loads, selecting the right materials for the right purposes, and handling the uncertainties of geology. ”

The statue, designed by architect Ram Suthar and built by Larsen and Toubro, has a viewing gallery at a height of 150 m which provides visitors a spectacular view of the Sardar Sarovar dam and its vicinity.

Past winners of this award include iconic structures such as Sydney Opera House in Australia, the Pompidou Centre in Paris and Severn Bridge in England.

The institute has been bestowing this award for best structural designs for the last 52 years.

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