Architecture competition "New York Affordable Housing Challenge" 2nd prize winners - University of North Carolina at Charlotte

We’d like to take the opportunity to introduce you to the winner of the 2nd prize of our “New York Affordable Housing Challenge” competition - Peter Wong, Christopher Jarrett, Nazinin Modaresahmadi and Robert Stubbs from USA!

2nd prize winners from USA- DesignLAB

DesignLAB at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte (UNC Charlotte) was established in 2015 as a design research space in the School of Architecture. As an extension of the School’s curricular and community outreach efforts, DesignLAB is a venue where faculty and students collaborate on innovative design projects that aim to advance contemporary professional, theoretical, and technical issues facing architecture today.

The DesignLAB is supported by research funds and grants and professional collaboration that afford a variety of investigative projects, from housing to school design, and from computational research to urban problems. A large part of its efforts is to generate design ingenuity via speculative works such as competitions and laboratory projects. Headed by architects Chris Jarrett (Columbia University, 1986) and Peter Wong (University of Pennsylvania, 1985), the DesignLAB employs graduate and undergraduate students as a way of extending the School’s design focus and to advance its teaching agenda.

Brief information about the projects that you/your company have been involved with. For instance what scale have you focused on/preferred, any significant projects where company/ individuals have been involved?

Recent projects in the DesignLAB center on architectural design competitions including: The World Forestry Congress’s 2015 Wood Affordable Housing Competition for Durban, South Africa, and ActivateNC Urban Housing Competition (which received a merit citiation). In addition, DesignLAB is currently working on a research project with the Department of Computer Science at UNC Charlotte involving psycho-spatial eyetracking tools to assess the effects of contemporary architectural space.

What does architecture mean to you and what is the role of an architect in your society?

Architecture is everywhere. Architecture is space. Architecture is matter. It is the meat and bones and energy of the places we inhabit. Architecture is a passion. It’s hard, fraught with challenges, absorbing nearly every discipline in the arts, humanities and sciences. It’s mental and physical. It is existential and at the same time very real. While facing a myriad of functional and technical concerns, architecture has the capacity to move us in ways that are different than any other form of art - music, painting, sculpture, dance. Architectural space envelopes us and has the capacity to surprise us and elevate our spirit. This is its challenge.

Why do you participate in architecture vision competitions?

Idea competitions are a venue to test ideas and speculate on the possibilities of architecture. They are a luxury of sorts, free of many typical constraints, but they also have their own hidden challenges. They are also sometimes a necessity to land the next commission. Competitions have the capacity to bring critical ideas and innovative thinking and design to the public sphere in ways that other kinds of professional activity cannot. Competitions push ideas forward. They have the capacity to advance the discourse of architecture through visual projection. Most significantly, idea competitions tend to advance the discipline of design. New design strategies, methods and design techniques often emerge to the benefit of not only the design team but the discipline of design at large.

What advice would you give to individuals who struggle to decide whether it would be beneficial for them to participate in architecture vision competitions?

There is no need to struggle to decide the benefits of participating in idea competitions. Just do it. Consider it necessary exercise. Competitions are an excellent way to improve the quality of one’s own work, to test ideas, to think critically and reflectively, to sharpen one’s skills. Competitions generate excitement. They keep things fresh in the office. They challenge the status quo. While it requires much effort, the reward of participating in competitions is rejuvenating, motivating and often leads to something interesting, whether it is a new set of ideas or agendas, a unique experience or the next project. No need to struggle. Consider competitions to be an integral part of any architect’s portfolio.

Open architecture competitions

  • Closest Deadline first
  • Project competitions first
    Selected winning projects have the potential to be constructed
  • Ideas competitions first
    Experimental competitions with the focus on pushing the boundaries of creativity
project COMPETITION
Mega Dunes Eco Lodges - Abu Dhabi

Design comfortable, sustainable visitor huts for the Abu Dhabi protected nature reserve

Prize: MONETARY AWARD + CONSTRUCTION
Eligibility: OPEN TO ALL

registration deadlines

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Jan 17
Feb 28
Jun 01
Register now
project COMPETITION
Monte d'Oiro Wine Tasting Room

Design an iconic space for guests to enjoy the wines and the views of this Portuguese vineyard

Prize: MONETARY AWARD
Eligibility: OPEN TO ALL

registration deadlines

Remind me
Jan 21
Mar 03
Jun 05
Register now
ideas COMPETITION
MICROHOME 2020 - Small living, huge impact!

Design a new concept of small-scale architecture with the second annual Microhomes competition

Prize: MONETARY AWARD
Eligibility: OPEN TO ALL

registration deadlines

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Jun 07
Sep 09
Nov 04
Register now
project COMPETITION
Kurgi Observation Tower

Design an eco-farm observation tower in UNESCO biosphere reserve

Prize: MONETARY AWARD + CONSTRUCTION
Eligibility: OPEN TO ALL

registration deadlines

Remind me
Jan 24
Mar 06
Jun 08
Register now
ideas COMPETITION
RE-Stock London Housing

Submit affordable housing solutions for the one of the world’s most iconic and expensive cities

Prize: MONETARY AWARD + PUBLICATION IN THE BOOK
Eligibility: OPEN TO ALL

registration deadlines

Remind me
Jan 28
Mar 10
Jun 12
Register now
ideas COMPETITION
Melbourne Affordable Housing Challenge

Design affordable housing solutions for Australia’s fastest-growing city

Prize: MONETARY AWARD + PUBLICATION IN THE BOOK
Eligibility: OPEN TO ALL

registration deadlines

Remind me
Jun 16
Sep 08
Nov 03
Register now
ideas COMPETITION
Prisons Redesigned!

Redesign and improve the way prisons work

Prize: MONETARY AWARD + PUBLICATION IN THE BOOK
Eligibility: OPEN TO ALL

registration deadlines

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Jun 18
Sep 10
Nov 05
Register now
essay COMPETITION
ESSAY: The Architecture of Prisons

Submit your essay on prison architecture

Prize: MONETARY AWARD + PUBLICATION IN THE BOOK
Eligibility: OPEN TO ALL

registration deadlines

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Jun 19
Sep 11
Nov 06
Register now
ideas COMPETITION
Pavilion Of Humanity: First Contact

How would you represent the best that humanity has to offer through architecture?

Prize: MONETARY AWARD
Eligibility: OPEN TO ALL

registration deadlines

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Jun 23
Sep 15
Nov 10
Register now
essay COMPETITION
What is Sustainable Architecture?

Share your opinion on sustainable architecture in the open essay competition

Prize: MONETARY AWARD + PUBLICATION IN THE BOOK
Eligibility: OPEN TO ALL

registration deadlines

Remind me
Jun 24
Sep 16
Nov 11
Register now

ARCHITECTURE COMPETITIONS

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