Following an international competition, Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG) + HIJJAS + RAMBØLL have been selected as the lead masterplan designer for BIODIVERCITY – a sustainable destination on Penang South Island (PSI) in northwest Malaysia, and one of the most biodiverse places on the planet.
BIG and its Malaysian architect of record Hijjas Architect & Planner were selected, out of a shortlist of five well-known firms including Foster + Partners, UNStudio and MVRDV, together with their respective Malaysian partners. The shortlist was announced earlier this year.
The PSI will provide space for communities, including the local fishermen and amenities that cater to the lifestyle requirements of young professionals and Penang residents.
The state Chief Minister Mr Chow Kon Yeow said during the announcement of the results that a master jury panel comprising prominent Malaysian and international experts was established to assist the state in selecting the best scheme suited for the implementation of the PSI project.
“Assisted by a Technical Review Panel (TRP) of independent experts, the panelists deliberated over the concepts and details in the submissions for about four weeks to ensure that the projects are implementable and appropriate for Penang. The PSI will play a crucial role in helping Penang to scale to greater heights. The sale and development of the three islands will fund Penang’s ambition to build the state’s first Light Rail Transit (LRT) and new roads under the Penang Transport Master Plan (PTMP) to solve traffic congestions in Penang.” – Penang Chief Minister Mr Chow Kon Yeow
The five finalists that were shortlisted early this year were BIG – Bjarke Ingels Group (Denmark) with Hijjas Architect & Planner; Foster + Partners (UK) with GDP Architects Sdn Bhd; MVRDV (the Netherlands) with aLM Architects; Tekuma Frenchman Urban Design (US) with EOWON Architects; and UNStudio (the Netherlands) with Architects 61 Sdn Bhd.
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