As the number of museums goes up in Qatar, Qatar Museums and Malcolm Reading Consultants launched an international design competition to find an architect to convert an enormous flour mill into the Qatar Art Mill, a proposed art museum at Doha Bay. Construction of the project is currently scheduled to begin in 2017.
The approximately 1 million sq.foot competition site, which is currently occupied by Qatar Flour Mills, is near other local landmarks like the Corniche, the I.M. Pei-designed Museum of Islamic Art, and Jean Nouvel's upcoming National Museum of Qatar that is currently under construction.
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The three-stage competition begins with an open call for interest with the goal to establish a longlist of 20 architecture teams. In stage two, the longlisted teams will receive £5,000 in contribution to expenses and propose design strategies for the museum site and its connection to the city.
Stage three shortlists the five finalist teams who will be given further briefing and produce more detailed concepts to convert and expand the Flour Mill. The shortlisters will receive an honorarium of £30,000.
Although the country continues to face criticism regarding workers' conditions in other major projects, the Art Mill competition brief states that the future museum will be "dynamic, sustainable, contemporary and true to its social and cultural responsibilities. It will also acknowledge the heritage and setting of a historic site at the heart of the port and city."
"'Qatar Museums is looking for an outstanding architect who will take immense care with the project. It presents an ideal opportunity both for new talent and designers who are on the cusp of developing as well as celebrated architects who genuinely connect with the site," said Mansoor bin Ebrahim Al Mahmoud, Acting Chief Executive Officer of Qatar Museums, in a statement.
To be considered for the longlist, participants must submit their entry by June 26, 2015 (14:00 BST). The longlist will be announced in summer 2015, followed by the shortlist in fall 2015. The winning team will be revealed in spring 2016.
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