Australia’s best architecture featured in new TV series

Set to hit screens this Saturday, Australia by Design is a new TV series showcasing the best architect-designed homes, office spaces and construction spaces.

Australian architect and registrar of the NSW Architects Registration Board, Tim Horton, has been announced as the host of the program, which will feature nine episodes.

Speaking to Architecture and Design, Horton commented that the series intended to make architecture more accessible to the audience by striking the right balance between the architecture-based shows already seen on TV.

“Importantly, the jury is not [made up of] architects,” says Horton. “It’s drawing from across industry. A lawyer, a builder, a landscape architect – yes, you [will] see architecture discussed and dissected by architects, but also by those who are simply interested in architecture.

“We’ve collected [a lot of] industry leaders. That can [mean] people who understand how things go together, through to other professionals who work with architects, through to really witty lawyers. The strength [of the jury] lies in its expertise and diversity.

“In some ways, [the show’s] format is cute,” he adds. “There’s a lot of fun in the way the countdown works. We want to talk about design but we don’t want it to be a PhD. Neither do we want it to be renovation mumble. This show has standards – it is trying to treat the Australian public like the adults they are.”

Each episode of the show features a selection of architecture from one of Australia’s states and territories, and will see a jury decide on a ranked list of ten of the best projects in the state. The last episode will be a final competition between the top contenders.

The seven judging criteria looked at by the jury will include concept, relationship to context, program resolution, interaction of allied disciplines, cost-value outcome, and response to client and user needs.

Sustainability will also form part of the evaluation criteria with each project assessed based on its benefit to the environment as expressed through its design.

Alongside Tim Horton, ACT government architect Catherine Townsend, NSW government architect Peter Poulet, Victorian government architect Jill Garner, Queensland government architect Malcolm Middleton, and SA associate government architect Nick Tridente will act as program presenters for their respective states.

John Wardle Architects, Cox Architecture, Robert Watson, Watson Architecture + Design and Seth Stein Architects (London) and Dunn & Hillam Architects are just some of the firms to be featured.

Australia by Design airs on Channel 10 or WIN from 15 July.

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