WINNER: Newport Street Gallery 

Caruso St John's Newport Street Gallery wins 2016 RIBA Stirling Prize for the best building of the year.

Newport Street Gallery has won the coveted 2016 RIBA Stirling Prize for the UK’s best new building. Now in its 21st year, the RIBA Stirling Prize sponsored by Almacantar, is the UK’s most prestigious architecture prize.

This is the first time Caruso St John architects have won the RIBA Stirling Prize; they were shortlisted for the award for Brick House, west London in 2006 and New Art Gallery Walsall in 2000.

Newport Street Gallery involved the conversion and transformation of a street facing a railway line in Vauxhall, south London, into a free public gallery for artist Damien Hirst's private art collection. Three listed Victorian industrial buildings, formerly carpentry and scenery painting workshops for West End theatres, have been remodelled and flanked at either end by entirely new buildings; one with a striking, spiky saw-tooth roof. 

The new additions have a specially-created hard pale red brick finish to closely reference the original buildings, while a huge LED panel on the railway facade encourages passing train commuters to visit. The ground and upper floors within the interconnected five buildings are continuous, with new spiral staircases on their side, to create flexible spaces able to accommodate everything from individual works to larger shows. 

Comments from the judges:

‘This highly accomplished and expertly detailed art gallery is a bold and confident contribution to the best of UK architecture. Caruso St John’s approach to conservation is irreverent yet sensitive and achieves a clever solution that expresses a poetic juxtaposition of old and new.

‘The collection of buildings is beautifully curated, pulled together by the use of brick yet still expressive of their individuality. The playful use of LED technology gives a contemporary addition to the facade. 

‘Internally, the five buildings are connected as a continuous and coherent sequence of light filled gallery spaces. The simple and logical circulation is enlivened by exquisitely detailed and sensuous staircases.

‘The gallery, which is free of charge, is a generous asset to an evolving community.’

Speaking tonight, RIBA President Jane Duncan said:

‘With Newport Street Gallery, Damien Hirst has made an exceptional contribution to the UK’s strong history of private patronage of architecture. Not only has Damien opened up his enviable private art collection to the world, but he has commissioned a real work of art to house it in.

‘Caruso St John have created a stunningly versatile space from a number of linked buildings, with beautifully crafted staircases and superb details including tactile brick facades that blend the street externally and create a succession of wonderful gallery spaces.

‘This project exemplifies the best of UK architecture – a highly considered and creative project that brings to life a previously-unloved pocket of the city. I am delighted to present architects Caruso St John with the 2016 RIBA Stirling Prize.’

Peter St John, Partner, Caruso St John Architects said: 

‘It's rare for architects to be given the opportunity to realise a personal vision of the quality of the Newport Street Gallery, and for that vision to have a generous public dimension. We see the building as a palace for direct, intimate and luxurious encounters with contemporary art, and we are very pleased that this award will bring more people to see this extraordinary collection.’.

Read more about the Newport Street Gallery.

Newport Street Gallery Stirling Prize 2016

RIBA Stirling Prize 2016 Shortlist

These six projects were shortlisted for the prestigious 2016 RIBA Stirling Prize for the UK’s best new building.

The RIBA Stirling Prize winner was selected from this shortlist for architecture's highest accolade, awarded by the Royal Institute of British Architects on Thursday 6 October 2016.

Now in its twenty-first year, the 2016 RIBA Stirling Prize is sponsored by Almacantar. 


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patrik schumacher

Patrik Schumacher joined Zaha Hadid Architects in 1988. He is the senior office partner and designer of the practice as well as a co-author and project partner on seminal projects such as the MAXXI: National Museum of 21st Century Arts in Rome, the BMW Central Building in Leipzig, the Guangzhou Opera House in China and the Dongdaemun Design Plaza in Seoul. Patrik is a co-director of the Design Research Laboratory (DRL) at the Architectural Association School of Architecture. He has co-taught with Zaha Hadid at the University of Illinois - Chicago, Yale, Columbia and at the Graduate School of Design at Harvard University.



Since co-founding AHMM in 1989, Paul's projects at all scales have been recognised as demonstrations of outstanding design, collaborative creativity, applied technology, research and sustainability, many of them winning national and international awards and media and public acclaim. His current projects include the Television Centre masterplan and the new Scotland Yard for the Metropolitan Police. Paul led AHMM's work on the RIBA Stirling Prize-winning Burntwood School in south London, as well as two other Stirling-shortlisted buildings, Westminster Academy in 2008 and Kentish Town Health Centre in 2009. He is a visiting professor at the Bartlett and Sheffield schools of architecture.


Roisin Heneghan

Roisin Heneghan, leads heneghan peng architects with Shih-Fu Peng. Projects include Grand Egyptian Museum, Palestinian Museum, Giant's Causeway Visitors' Centre, Central Park Bridges at the London Olympic Park, School of Architecture at the University of Greenwich and Canadian Canoe Museum. Twice nominated for RIBA Stirling Prize in 2015 and 2013.



Mike is a Fellow of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors. He is recognised as one of the key experts in the Central London property market. He is a prolific developer, responsible for a number of the landmark schemes built in the capital in the last 20 years. Before founding Almacantar, Mike spent seven years at Land Securities plc, the largest property company in the UK, where he was an Executive Board Director with responsibility for the London portfolio and Strategic Land portfolio. Mike is an Independent Director of Taylor Wimpey plc, a Trustee of the Royal College of Surgeons of England and Governor of Southbank Centre Limited.



Rachel Whiteread is one of Britain's leading contemporary sculptors. She shot to public attention in 1993 with her sculpture, 'House,' a life-sized replica of the interior of a condemned terraced house in London's East End which provoked intense public debate until it was eventually demolished in 1994. She won the Turner Prize in 1993. Over the last decade she has developed a significant international reputation, creating major public works in both Europe and the United States. Her winning proposal for the Holocaust memorial at the Judenplatz in Vienna was one of the most prestigious sculptural commissions in Europe in the 1990s.


The RIBA Stirling Prize is judged against a range of criteria including design vision; innovation and originality; capacity to stimulate, engage and delight occupants and visitors; accessibility and sustainability; how fit the building is for its purpose and the level of client satisfaction.

The RIBA Awards are the most rigorously judged prizes for architectural excellence in the UK, with the winning buildings then eligible for the prestigious RIBA Stirling Prize. 

Born in 1996 out of its predecessor, The Building of the Year Award, The RIBA Stirling Prize is presented to RIBA Chartered Architects and International Fellows for buildings in the UK which have made the greatest contribution to the evolution of architecture over the past year.

The RIBA Stirling Prize is named afterJames Stirling. Stirling won the Royal Gold Medal in 1980 'in recognition of past achievements which exist in their own right, as well as the potential of unbuilt projects, both past and future, which are an inseparable part of the Stirling vocabulary'.

Often described as a 'prophet without honour in his own country', he did not live long enough to achieve the public recognition and success his peers achieved after his untimely death. He died, at the height of his powers, following a routine operation.