Globe and Mail
26 January 2005
By James Adams
Toronto -- The Aga Khan was awarded the fifth Vincent Scully Prize last night at a ceremony in Washington, honouring him for his contributions to design excellence and the "improvement of the built environment in the Muslim world." The award, named after the famous Yale architect, author and educator, was started in 1999 to recognize "exemplary practice, scholarship or criticism in architecture, historic preservation and urban design."
The Aga Khan, who is 68 this year, is the spiritual leader of the world's 15 million Nizari Ismailis, a Muslim sect. In 1977, he established the Aga Khan Award for Architecture, which is given every three years and is worth $500,000 (U.S.), the biggest architectural prize in the world. He is currently overseeing efforts to build an international museum of Islamic art and an Ismaili cultural centre on 17 acres of land in northeast Toronto on the current site of the Bata Shoe headquarters.