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London’s Nova Victoria is the UK’s ugliest building  

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6th Sep 17 3:43 pm

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London’s Nova Victoria has been crowned as the UK’s ugliest building after it won the 2017 Carbuncle Cup.

Described as crass’, ‘over-scaled’ and ‘a hideous mess by judges the office building is part of a development that occupies a whole block in London’s Victoria and consists of two office buildings designed by PLP Architecture and a residential building designed by Benson & Forsyth.

The award was given to PLP Architecture for the office buildings. 

Judge Catherine Croft said: “It makes me want to cringe physically. It’s a crass assault on all your senses from the moment you leave the Tube station.” 

Fellow judge David Rudlin said: “There’s no variety and you can’t read the floors.”

“It’s got the same proportions as Salisbury Cathedral. For me the spire gives it carbuncular status – otherwise it’s just a bad building,” he added. 

It is the sixth consecutive time a London building has won the debatable honour run by Building Design Magazine (BD). 

BD editor Thomas Lane said “The architect appears to have been inspired by the fractured, angular shapes beloved of stararchitects like Frank Gehry and Daniel Libeskind and applied these to a run-of-the-mill spec office development. 

The winner was decided by a panel of judges including Lane, Twentieth Century Society director Catherine Croft, Urbed director and chair of the Academy of Urbanism David Rudlin and BD assistant editor Elizabeth Hopkirk.

Readers’ comments were also considered during the judging process.

Previous winners include the Lincoln Plaza in 2016 and the Walkie Talkie building in 2015.


The other buildings on the 2017 Carbuncle Cup shortlist were as follows:

  • Preston Railway Station Butler Street Entrance by AHR
  • Greetham Street Student Halls, Portsmouth by Cooley Architects
  • 8 Somers Road, Malvern, Worcestshire by Vivid Architects
  • Circus West, Battersea Power Station, London by Simpson Haugh
  • Park Plaza London Waterloo by ESA Architecture

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