The happier individuals are in our society are, the better we all feel. Our MacEwen Award entries are an encouraging indicator of the profession's efforts to further that sense of wellbeing
Here is our longlist of 24 projects from around the UK, each of which demonstrates the virtues we associate with the RIBAJ MacEwen Award: places that go that little bit further beyond their basic function to show a wider benefit to society.
MacEwen-eligible places are the opposite of – shall we say – those speculative buy-to-leave towers of investor apartments that benefit nobody beyond those who cash in on them. Instead, there is a strong sense of architects, other professions, clients and users working together 'for the common good'.
This year’s crop includes some encouragingly different kinds of housing, imaginatively repurposed old buildings for arts and community use, places of shelter and support, temporary projects that revive town centres and reach out to the next generation of architects and designers. There are places offering imaginative therapy, places providing oases of calm in the city, places celebrating rural and seaside life.
Particularly cheering this year is the way people are now really getting to grips with the national challenge of providing a far better standard of care homes for the elderly and mentally infirm, in a variety of ways, both publicly and privately funded. And all the entries show the real value that committed designers bring.
Urban and rural revitalisation
New approaches to housing