The Inauguration Ceremony of the 30th Annual Sessions of the Sri Lanka Institute of Architects (SLIA), ‘Architect 2012’, was held on 22 February at the BMICH.
Minister of International Monetary Cooperation Dr. Sarath Amunugama graced the occasion as a special representative of President Mahinda Rajapaksa. Minister of Construction, Engineering Services, Housing and Common Amenities Wimal Weerawansa was Guest of Honour. Several other ministers also attended the grand occasion.
Other eminent guests included Prof. Jan Gehl from Denmark, an expert in city planning, renowned Architect and Prof. Frans van der Werf from Netherlands.
Once the Annual Sessions were ceremonially declared open, the official theme for ‘Architect 2012’, ‘Regenerating Sri Lanka, the Architect and the Built Environment’ was announced.
Speaking about the carefully selected theme that carries national resonance, SLIA President Archt. Ranjan Nadesapillai, said, “The Government’s objective is to turn Sri Lanka into the Wonder of Asia. To that end, the built environment needs to be properly organised, designed and built. In addition to aesthetics or beauty, there are so many other aspects such as safety and people’s psychological, cultural and sociological needs that need to be considered. All these elements need to be embodied in the construction. It is only if the built environment meets these standards that the whole purpose and objective of the Government can be achieved. We can only be the Wonder of Asia if our built environment is professionally designed.”
Newly enrolled members of SLIA were presented with scrolls to epitomise their association with the Institute. Past President Archt. Locana Gunaratne was inducted as an Honorary Fellow Member in view of his extensive services to the profession.
The Inauguration also saw awards of excellence in the field of architecture being presented to members of SLIA. These awards recognised exceptional design abilities, use of colour and honoured outstanding design in various categories of construction. In addition, product awards were presented to the best locally manufactured items.