Malaysia's PAM Awards 2024 honours country’s best buildings


Front view of the Skyblox. Photos: Pixelaw Photography

One winner led the way in terms of sustainable urban housing while another project repurposed an abandoned heritage building into a shelter for the homeless.

These designs, and more, were recognised at the recent Pertubuhan Akitek Malaysia (PAM) Awards 2024 ceremony held May 31.

The Skyblox Co-Living Housing project in Kuala Lumpur utilised the innovative Prefabricated Prefinished Volumetric Construction (PPVC) method that challenges traditional building processes by prefabricating modular units off-site, and subsequently transporting and installing them at the project site.

Through this approach, SkyBlox significantly reduced on-site waste and environmental impact while enhancing efficiency in construction timelines.

The project’s distinctive yellow cantilever design makes it a visually striking landmark, at the same time symbolising a commitment to pushing the boundaries of sustainable living practices.

Comprising 320 modern, eco-friendly en-suite rooms, SkyBlox not only provides housing but promotes a community-centric lifestyle deeply rooted in nature.

An overview of the vibrant yellow cantilevered Skyblox Co-Living Housing.An overview of the vibrant yellow cantilevered Skyblox Co-Living Housing.

Meanwhile, the Night Shelter was a project initiated by the Penang Island City Council that repurposed an existing abandoned, decommissioned heritage structure into a shelter that helps George Town’s homeless population reintegrate into society.

Additionally, SAMA Square is a colourful design that serves as an attractive landmark in the heart of Setapak in Kuala Lumpur. It pushes the boundaries of a traditional marketplace through innovative design, fosters community connections and is a good example of sustainable urban development.

“The PAM Awards is not just about recognition but also about inspiring a dialogue on the future of architecture in Malaysia.

“It is a reminder that our built environment is a living canvas, ever-evolving, and that our architects are the artists charged with its continual reinvention,” said architect Razin Mahmood, the PAM Awards convener.

A view of the Night Shelter, situated along Jalan Magazine in George Town. Photo: Johnny Ooi ArchitectA view of the Night Shelter, situated along Jalan Magazine in George Town. Photo: Johnny Ooi Architect

This year, the Awards saw only one project taking home the Gold title, which went to Semarak20 in Kuala Lumpur. The skyscraper, designed by HMSK Architecture, won under the Commercial Mixed Development category.

“The PAM Awards is committed to upholding the highest standards of excellence in architecture. Each project is evaluated based on a comprehensive set of criteria including design innovation, sustainability, functionality and social impact.

“This year, the bar was set particularly high to ensure that only projects that truly exemplify exceptional architectural achievement are recognised with the Gold award. The primary focus of the jury is on quality rather than quantity.

“It is essential that a Gold award represents the pinnacle of architectural excellence. This approach maintains the prestige and integrity of the Gold award, ensuring it remains a symbol of the highest level of architectural accomplishment,” said architect Sarly Adre Sarkum, PAM past president and jury representative.

“Recognising projects that show potential but may not have reached the highest standards this year motivates continued excellence and development in future projects. It is important to note that these decisions were made through a rigorous and thorough deliberation process, reflecting the consensus of the entire jury.

“The unanimous agreement among the jury members reinforces the integrity and credibility of the awards, ensuring that each recognition is deserved and well-considered,” he added.

An overview of the Semarak20 development. Photo: HMSK ArchitectureAn overview of the Semarak20 development. Photo: HMSK Architecture

Having said that, he added the jury hopes to see several key developments in next year’s entries.

“We are eager for projects that push the boundaries of architectural design, incorporating innovative solutions and creative approaches that challenge conventional norms.

“Given the importance of sustainability, we hope to see more projects prioritising environmental responsibility, using green building practices and energy-efficient designs.

“Social impact is also crucial. We look forward to designs that promote social cohesion, inclusivity and accessibility. We expect buildings that excel in usability and functionality, creating user-friendly and adaptable spaces. High-quality construction and craftsmanship are essential, with attention to detail and the use of durable materials,” he said.

“Additionally, the jury would like to see significant improvement in the low-rise residential category, encouraging innovative and sustainable solutions in this segment. Ultimately, we hope to see projects that integrate aesthetics, functionality, sustainability and social impact seamlessly, setting new benchmarks in architectural excellence and inspiring others in the field.”

The 3-Juxta House opens up to a fantastic mountain view of Ipoh and the lush greenery of Perak Turf Club. Photo: Bricks BeginThe 3-Juxta House opens up to a fantastic mountain view of Ipoh and the lush greenery of Perak Turf Club. Photo: Bricks Begin

The PAM Awards, launched in 1990, honours architects, building owners, builders and contractors who emphasise design ingenuity and contribute to a high-quality built environment.

This year, it received 107 submissions across 13 categories, with only 40 projects shortlisted.

The award categories included Single Residential, Multiple Residential (Low Rise), Multiple Residential (High Rise), Education, Industrial, Adaptive Re-use, Interior Design, Commercial (Low Rise), Commercial (High Rise), Commercial Mixed Development, Collaboration, Special Category and Sustainable Development Goals (SDG).

Here are the key winners:

Category: Single Residential

Award: Silver

Project: House at Urat Mata, Kuching, Sarawak

Architect: MNSC Architects

Award: Silver

Project: 3-Juxta House, Ipoh, Perak

Architect: Kee Yen Architect

The vent blocks of the House at Urat Mata are meticulously arranged as a privacy screen that covers almost the entire first-floor exterior to strategically shade the upper dwelling from both the eastern and western sun. Photo: MNSC ArchitectsThe vent blocks of the House at Urat Mata are meticulously arranged as a privacy screen that covers almost the entire first-floor exterior to strategically shade the upper dwelling from both the eastern and western sun. Photo: MNSC Architects

Category: Multiple Residential (High rise)

Award: Silver

Project: Park Regent, Kuala Lumpur

Architect: Environmental Design Practice

Park Regent, an example of urban integration, blends seamlessly with its landscape. Photo: Environmental Design PracticePark Regent, an example of urban integration, blends seamlessly with its landscape. Photo: Environmental Design Practice

Category: Adaptive Re-use

Award: Silver

Project: Night Shelter, George Town, Penang

Architect: Johnny Ooi Architect

Category: Industrial

Award: Commendation

Project: Accurativ Factory, Klang, Selangor

Architect: Hb Ong Architect

Award: Commendation

Project: Endau - Mersing Fish Processing Park, Endau, Johor

Architect: Pakatan Akitek

A rear view of the Endau-Mersing Fish Processing Park (EMFPP) development in Endau, Johor. Photo: Pakatan AkitekA rear view of the Endau-Mersing Fish Processing Park (EMFPP) development in Endau, Johor. Photo: Pakatan Akitek

Category: Interior Design

Award: Commendation

Project: RDC Arkitek HQ, Johor Baru, Johor

Architect: RDC Arkitek

A grand perspective highlighting the harmonious linkages between the exhibition area, amphitheatre and central island discussion area of the RDC Arkitek HQ. Photo: RDC ArkitekA grand perspective highlighting the harmonious linkages between the exhibition area, amphitheatre and central island discussion area of the RDC Arkitek HQ. Photo: RDC Arkitek

Category: Commercial Low Rise

Award: Silver

Project: Tasek @Kotasas, Kuantan, Pahang

Architect: Gsd Architect

Award: Silver

Project: SAMA Square, Kuala Lumpur

Architect: Tan Kwon Chong Architect (TKCA Architect)

The Pavillion concept provides both visual and spatial transparency between the building spaces and the lake garden at Tasek@KotaSAS. Photo: Gsd ArchitectThe Pavillion concept provides both visual and spatial transparency between the building spaces and the lake garden at Tasek@KotaSAS. Photo: Gsd Architect

The drop-off area of SAMA Square’s People’s Plaza, which connects the sheltered tropical community market, food stalls and clustered landscaped retail space. Photo: Tan Kwon Chong ArchitectThe drop-off area of SAMA Square’s People’s Plaza, which connects the sheltered tropical community market, food stalls and clustered landscaped retail space. Photo: Tan Kwon Chong Architect

Category: Commercial Mixed Development

Award: Gold

Project: Semarak20, Kuala Lumpur

Architect: HMSK Architecture

Award: Silver

Project: DXN Cyberville, Cyberjaya, Selangor

Architect: Justin Lee Architect

The integrated landscape at DXN Cyberville extends from outdoor to indoor plantations, creating a captivating effect. Photo: Justin Lee ArchitectThe integrated landscape at DXN Cyberville extends from outdoor to indoor plantations, creating a captivating effect. Photo: Justin Lee Architect

Category: Special

Award: Silver

Project: Skyblox Co-Living Housing, Kuala Lumpur

Architect: Tan Kwon Chong Architect (TKCA Architect)

A view of Menara Affin from the sunken plaza. Photo: Arkitek MAAA view of Menara Affin from the sunken plaza. Photo: Arkitek MAA

Category: SDG

Award: Silver

Project: Night Shelter, George Town, Penang

Architect: Johnny Ooi Architect

Award: Silver

Project: Menara Affin Bank@TRX, Kuala Lumpur

Architect: Arkitek Maa


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