Despite three out of the six projects on this year's RIBA Stirling Prize shortlist
being culture, attractions and leisure-related, none walked away with the top prize.
Mikhail Riches' Goldsmith Street project – comprising 100 highly energy-efficient homes built for Norwich City Council – saw of competition in particular from Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners' (RSHP) Macallan Distillery and Visitor Experience, which earlier in the week won the 2019 RIAS Andrew Doolan Best Building in Scotland Award.
The centre features an undulating, meadow-covered roof described as "one of the most complicated timber structures in the world" and has been described by RSHP partner Stephen Barrett
as "technically very impressive" due, in part, to a two-hour explosion-proof glass wall built between the still house and the visitor centre.
Also nominated was the 400-seat Nevill Holt Opera theatre building by Witherford Watson Mann Architects, which is hidden within a 17th century stable block on a Grade I-listed estate, and the Weston visitor centre and gallery at Yorkshire Sculpture Park, by Feilden Fowles Architects. The gallery is highly regarded for its close relationship with the surrounding landscape.
Despite none of the leisure projects coming out on top, this year's shortlist was marked improvement from last year, when Tate St Ives was the only such project that found its way into the running. The last leisure project to win the Stirling Prize was Hastings Pier by dRMM Architects