Building Design

Not to be confused with Building Design+Construction.
For the design of buildings, see Building design.
Building Design
Editor Amanda Baillieu
Ellis Woodman (Executive Editor)
Categories Architecture
Frequency Weekly
Circulation 7,698 (2013) Decrease
Company United Business Media
Country United Kingdom
Language English
ISSN 0007-3423

Building Design, or BD, is a weekly architectural magazine and digital title in the United Kingdom.

BD was launched in 1970 by publisher Morgan Grampian as a closed circulation weekly as high-tech architecture was just starting to take-off. It ceased its print edition in March 2014, remaining a digital only publication.[1]

Unlike most other architectural publications BD’s editors, with a few exceptions, are journalists not architects.


In 2006, the last year of the independent ABC circulation reports, the magazine had a circulation of over 23,000, with 21,500 circulated free to professional and industry related subscriptions.[2]

By 2013 BD reported had a circulation of 7,698. Its website,, has 89,000 registered users and receives around 45,000 unique visitors a week, who generate over 750,000 page impressions a month. BD's circulation figures are independently assured by PricewaterhouseCoopers.[3]

The magazine stopped free access to news, blogs and video content on its website in September 2010 when it introduced a subscription for full access.[4]

The publishing company is UBM Built Environment, a division of United Business Media, which also publishes Building and Property Week.[5]


BD hosts the Architect of the Year Awards and Young Architect of the Year in central London attended by approximately 6000 guests.

The Architect of the Year Awards[6][7] reward the UK's top architectural practices behind excellent built projects. Since their launch in 2004, the awards have grown in size and stature, featuring entries and attendance from leading practices, and have become firmly established as a key event in the architectural calendar. The awards night is now one of the largest gatherings of architects in the UK.

The Young Architect of the Year Award[8] recognises and rewards Europe's most promising new architects and practices. Previous winners have included Coffey Architects, Jonathan Hendry, Serie Architects, David Kohn Architects, Hackett Hall McKnight, Carmody Groarke, Nord and Lynch Architects.

World Architecture 100

BD publishes an annual ranking of the world's biggest architecture practices known as the World Architecture 100. The listing is distributed to the top FTSE 100 companies as well as BD subscribers and is available to buy online.[9]

Carbuncle Cup

The Carbuncle Cup is BD's prize for the worst new architecture in the UK. It has been running since 2006, when it was launched as a humorous counterpart to the Stirling Prize.[10]

A shortlist is announced each summer, based on nominations from the public. The winner is selected by a small group of architecture critics and professionals.

Recent winners

As of 2015, the most recent ten winners were:


The Editor is Thomas Lane, who joined BD in 2014 from Building. The assistant editor is Elizabeth Hopkirk. The architecture critic is Ike Ijeh

Past editors and staff include Amanda Baillieu, Paul Finch,[19] Peter Murray, Martin Pawley,[20] Hugh Pearman and Kieran Long.[21]


Building Design campaigned with the Twentieth Century Society for Robin Hood Gardens, a Brutalist housing estate in Poplar, London, to be listed and retained.[22][23] It has likewise argued against the demolition the unnecessary demolition of old school buildings.[24]


  1. Woodman, Ellis (14 March 2014). "As ever, the changing face of BD reflects the industry". Building Design. Retrieved 30 March 2014.
  2. "Certificate of Circulation 2005-06" (PDF). ABC. Retrieved 30 March 2014.
  3. "BD's Media Pack 2013" (PDF).
  4. Greenslade, Roy (24 September 2010). "As another magazine charges for access, where's the proof of paywall success?". Guardian.
  5. "About Building Design".
  6. "Architect of the Year Awards".
  7. "Architect of the Year Awards". BDOnline.
  8. "Young Architect of the Year". BDOnline.
  9. "The 100 Largest Architecture Firms In the World", ArchDaily, February 11, 2013.
  10. "Bricks, mortar and mateyness". Observer. 12 September 2010.
  11. Wainwright, Oliver (2 September 2015). "Carbuncle Cup: Walkie Talkie wins prize for worst building of the year". The Guardian. Retrieved 2 September 2015.
  12. "Carbuncle Cup 2014 winner announced". BDOnline. 3 September 2014. Retrieved 23 July 2015.
  13. "Carbuncle Cup winner 2013: A triumph for the dark side". BDOnline.
  14. Gilligan, Andrew (13 September 2012). "Cutty Sark wins award as worst new building in Britain". The Daily Telegraph.
  15. "Media City or Media Shitty: that Carbuncle Cup nomination (analysis)", The Drum, 29 July 2011.
  16. "London's Strata tower wins Carbuncle Cup as Britain's ugliest new building". The Guardian. 12 August 2010.
  17. "Towering above its rivals to win the Carbuncle Cup". Independent. 13 August 2010.
  18. "Ferry terminal's Carbuncle award", BBC, 4 September 2009.
  19. "Paul Finch OBE". Design Council. Retrieved 26 April 2015.
  20. Jenkins, David (10 March 2008). "Martin Pawley". The Guardian (obituary).
  21. "Restoration Home". BBC Two. Retrieved 11 November 2014.
  22. "Don't knock brutalism". Guardian. 26 June 2008.
  23. "Robin Hood Gardens - C20 launches campaign for funds". 30 November 2008.
  24. Wainwright, Martin (24 January 2010). "English Heritage issues SOS - save old schools". Guardian.

External links

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