London

London's Nova Victoria crowned UK's ugliest building

Nova Victoria Image copyright Dominic Lipinski
Image caption Nova Victoria has won the dubious honour of being the UK's worst new building of 2017

A London office block described as a "bright red hideous mess" has been named the UK's worst building.

Nova Victoria, London won the 2017 Carbuncle Cup with one judge describing it as "cringe-worthy".

It is the sixth consecutive time a London building has scooped the dubious honour run by Building Design Magazine (BD).

Architects PLP described the £380m office complex as a "distinct and architecturally daring" building.

But judges disagreed, describing the building as "crass, over-scaled and a hideous mess".

Image copyright BD
Image caption PLP described the £380m office complex as "distinct and architecturally daring"

Judge Catherine Croft said: "It makes me want to cringe physically. It's a crass assault on all your senses from the moment you leave the Tube station."

David Rudlin said the red cathedral like spire on Nova South was a particular cause for concern.

"It's got the same proportions as Salisbury Cathedral. For me the spire gives it carbuncular status - otherwise it's just a bad building", he said.

The development, which occupies a whole city block near London's Victoria station, consists of two office buildings designed by PLP Architecture and a residential building designed by Benson & Forsyth.

The title was awarded to PLP Architecture for the office buildings.


The other buildings on the 2017 Carbuncle Cup shortlist were as follows:

  • Preston Railway Station Butler Street Entrance by AHR
  • Greetham Street Student Halls, Portsmouth by Cooley Architects
  • Extension on 8 Somers Road, Malvern, Worcestershire by Vivid Architects
  • Circus West, Battersea Power Station, London by Simpson Haugh
  • Park Plaza London Waterloo by ESA Architecture

Image copyright BD
Image caption Circus West, Battersea Power Station was shortlisted for the 2017 award

Building Design started the award in 2006 as a "light-hearted way of drawing attention to a serious problem - bad architecture blighting the country's towns and cities".

Past winners have included Liverpool's ferry terminal, the renovation of the Cutty Sark and an apartment block incorporating a branch of Tesco in Woolwich, south-east London.

Readers put forward the nominations and a panel draws up the shortlist.

PLP said it did not want to comment on the announcement.


London's Carbuncle Cup six-year winning streak

Image copyright BD Online
Image caption Lincoln Plaza in London's Docklands won the 2016 Carbuncle Cup with one judge describing it as a "horror show"
Image copyright Building Design
Image caption Woolwich Central was one of two buildings shortlisted that was developed by Tesco subsidiary Spenhill
Image copyright BD Magazine
Image caption 464 Caledonian Road stands on the same street as HMP Pentonville
Image copyright Google
Image caption The restoration of the Cutty Sark won the award in 2012

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