9th Birla White YuvaRatna Awards
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Virendra Sharma

The National Rounds of the 9th Birla White YuvaRatna Awards were held in Mumbai on January 8th 2013 wherein 10 budding architects and engineers from across the country were honored. Dating back to 2004 - it's year of inception, this annual competition has gained popularity among students and has become a household name in architectural and engineering colleges across the country. Birla White YuvaRatna Awards provides a platform for budding architects and engineers to carve out a niche for themselves in the area of designing solutions keeping in mind sensitivity to the environment, space management and much more. The competition is conducted at a regional and national level with entries being assessed by an eminent panel of judges.

Marion Denizart

This year a total of 1585 entries were received from 102 architectural colleges and 425 entries were received from engineering colleges. The jury for the architectural stream comprised Ar. Shantanu Poredi, visiting faculty at Kamla Raheja Vidyanidhi Institute of Architecture – Mumbai; Ar. Zubin Zainuddin, Principal Partner of ZZ Architects; Ar. Shilpa Ranade, Founding Partner of the Mumbai-based design practice DCOOP and Ar. P.S. Babaria, CEO of Integrated Architect & Designers. The engineering stream panel comprised Prof. D. N. Singh, faculty member of Civil Engineering at Indian Institute of Technology Bombay; Mr. Hitesh Desai from Avighna India Ltd. and Mr. B.V.B. Pai, a renowned Civil Engineer.

UltraTech Cement Ltd.

Inaugurating the function, Mrs. Rajashree Birla, Director, UltraTech Cement Ltd. and Chairperson Aditya Birla Centre for Community Initiatives & Rural Development, complemented the commendable efforts of the Birla White team for focusing on a subject of immense relevance.

Keeping in mind the shortage of housing in India, which stands at a glaring figure of 26.3 million, the themes for this year's YuvaRatna Awards were designed. The two themes for the architectural stream were namely 'Affordable Housing Township' (within 4-5 acres) and 'Health Care Centre (hospital) within the township' and for the civil engineering stream the theme was 'Sustainable Development with White Cement'.

The entries were judged on factors that made the proposals affordable, self-sustaining and cost-effective. Innovative concepts proposed by the participants included design inspirations from natural elements like coral, integration of new-age building products with local affordable materials for unique designs, reduction in energy consumption by leveraging reflective properties of white cement, among others.

Winners of project category 'Affordable Housing Township':

1Virendra SharmaAyojan School of Architecture
2Anoop P.TKM college of Engineering
3Ankit ShahSir J.J College of Architecture
4Kirti BhojaniPriyadarshini Institute of Architecture and Design Studies

Winners of project category 'Health Care Centre':

Ranking Student Institute
1 Marion Denizart Ayojan School of Architecture
2 Arijit Patra Maulana Azad National Institute of Technology - Bhopal
3 Amarpali SharmaAyojan School of Architecture

Winners of project category 'Sustainable Development with White Cement':

Ranking Student Institute
1 Ankit Arora Nirma University
2 Ali Hasan Siddiqui Maulana Azad National Institute of Technology - Bhopal
3 Garvit OmerIIT kanpur