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Archtitecture's Top Prize Awarded In Miami Beach Friday

Christine Kanstinger

The Pritzker Architecture Prize is being awarded Friday at the New World Center on Miami Beach, a building designed by renowned architect Frank Gehry, a past winner of the prize. 

The Pritzker is considered the world's top award for architecture, and the annual prize usually recognizes a living architect. But this year's winner is the German architect Frei Otto, who died in March at age 89. He had been told he'd won the coveted prize.

This is first time the Pritzker Prize is taking place in Miami-Dade County.

"Ten former Pritzker Prize winners have buildings here in Miami, so that's extraordinary in and of itself. Not sure that's true in many other cities in the world, let along the United States," said U.S. Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker, a member of the family who founded the prize. "So the opportunity to be surrounded by significant architecture... as the family gives this award, is really, really important." 

Besides Gehry, other Pritzker-winning architects with designs in Miami include I.M. Pei, Renzo Piano, Herzog & de Meuron, and Rem Koolhass.

An installation modeled on Frei Otto's work will be up outside the New World Center through Saturday, May 16, and will eventually move to the Design District.

Alicia Zuckerman has loved audio since she was a kid listening to comedy albums and call-in radio advice shows she probably shouldn't have been listening to. She is Editorial Director at WLRN where she edits narrative and investigative audio journalism. She routinely reminds reporters to find and make moments of joy, which is how she learned you can grow mangoes on a balcony, and about the popularity of Manischewitz in the Caribbean. In 2020, she was named Editor of the Year by the Society of Professional Journalists Florida chapter.