I’m not sure what the criteria is when architects are designing buildings – other than “make sure it doesn’t fall down”, obviously – but what I am fairly certain of is that they’re probably not looking to have it described as “a crass assault on all your senses” or as making someone “cringe physically”. Just a hunch.
Unfortunately for firm PLP Architecture, this...has literally just happened to them. Their building, Nova Victoria, situated in London’s swanky Victoria district, has just been voted the ugliest building in the UK in the Carbuncle Cup, an accolade that is, weirdly enough, widely considered to be Quite Bad for architecture firms.
Here it is, looking really ugly:
The cup is run by Building Design magazine and has previously named the Isle of Dogs’ Lincoln Plaza and the undeniably really horrible Walkie Talkie as Britain’s ugliest buildings.
Head judge Catherine Croft said that the building “should have been good” due to its “prestige” location, but that it ended up “making [her] want to cringe physically.”
“It’s a crass assault on all your senses from the moment you leave the Tube station.”
Which is bad.
Fellow judge David Rudlin said the building was “inefficient” and that he was “concerned about the zig zagging fins”. “There’s no variety and you can’t read the floors,” he said. “It’s got the same proportions as Salisbury Cathedral. For me the spire gives it carbuncular status – otherwise it’s just a bad building.”
The Nova Victoria isn’t the only horribly ugly building in the UK though! There are bloody loads more!
Here’s Preston railway station, variously described as an “eyesore”, “hideous”, “a joke” and “planning gone mad”:
Nominator Steve Webberley said it looked like a “deadening cake tin slapped on its side” and that it would “seem out of date ten years ago”.
And here’s Greetham Street halls, Portsmouth, which nominator Kieran Clarke said indicated that the building’s architects were “either colour blind when choosing the external cladding or wanted to blind others”:
Finally, here’s the Park Plaza in London Waterloo, which judges describe as “looking like the skin has been peeled from someone’s torso, exposing a spaghetti of blood vessels and veins beneath.”
Not melodramatic at all, lads.