Holcim Awards Media Release

Toronto, Canada - September 19, 2014

Infrastructure as architecture: Gold for water supply and flood mitigation infrastructure Poreform, a water absorptive surface and subterranean basin that captures rain runoff and adds over 75,000 megaliters (20 billion gallons) to the water supply capacity of Las Vegas won the top prize. Designers Amy Mielke and Caitlin Taylor of Water Pore Partnership (USA) reposition water infrastructure as a civic project. Capable of rapid saturation and slow release, the flood-control pores of this “urban skin” are inlets to a new infrastructure that reframes water as a valuable resource rather than a liability.


At the prize handover event in Toronto, jury member Mark Jarzombek praised the Holcim Awards Gold winning project for developing infrastructure as an architectural undertaking that is reclaimed as a truly public matter of concern, balancing social and design imperatives. “While designed for a specific site, the project offers a welcome answer to the general problem of water scarcity – a straightforward, but nonetheless beautiful proposition for a global challenge,” he said. 

Holcim Awards North American ceremony, Toronto, Canada Presentation of the Holcim Awards Gold 2014 for North America (left to right): Alain Bourguignon, Holcim Area Manager for North America and the United Kingdom; prize winners Caitlin Taylor and Amy Mielke, Water Pore Partnership, New York for "Poreform: Water absorptive surface and subterranean basin"; Bernard Fontana, CEO Holcim Ltd; and jury member Mark Jarzombek, Associate Dean, School of Architecture & Planning, Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Holcim Awards North American ceremony, Toronto, Canada

Presentation of the Holcim Awards Gold 2014 for North America (left to right): Alain Bourguignon, Holcim Area Manager for North America and the United Kingdom; prize winners Caitlin Taylor and Amy Mielke, Water Pore Partnership, New York for "Poreform: Water absorptive surface and subterranean basin"; Bernard Fontana, CEO Holcim Ltd; and jury member Mark Jarzombek, Associate Dean, School of Architecture & Planning, Massachusetts Institute of Technology.