2022 Winner

Mr Justin Chen

Title: Design Principal
Company: Environment-Identity
Design Philosophy:

I believe there is no more important philosophy than having discipline, consistency, and rigor, while having open ears, eyes, and mind to react to change. Architecture is not an easy industry, and patience is key. A designer is both a keen observer and a good critic of him/herself and others. In my studio, I always encourage every member of my team to question whether the project is achieving goals of sustainability or innovation, whether it will stand the test of time, whether it pushes technology, whether it is worth the efforts of hundreds of workers who will build it, and whether it will enhance the lives of those who will inhabit it in the end. As an architect, I believe my most important skill is bringing people together from different disciplines to work together on the same problem. I am constantly listening and threading these various pieces of information together to find solutions that are not immediately obvious. This final woven concept is a kind of “beautiful compromise,” much richer and more layered because of our multiple perspectives. Design is teamwork and not about ego! For the past three years at E-ID, I have been translating my hard-won “lessons learned” into projects that represent a meaningful and timeless contribution to our industry — a positive reaction against the increasingly “fast and cheap” demands of the market. Starting a small studio in Hong Kong was aimed at bringing design talent together in service of the Greater Bay Area and to search for “modern Chinese design” that uses technology to advance architectural practice. If nominated as one of the award winners, I hope that the platform will allow me to inspire and lead the next generation of young architects in the region. Architecture impacts us all, so we should make it right!