UNESCO Launches Design Competition for Bamiyan Cultural Centre in Afghanistan

As Afghanistan begins its second decade of democratic governance after nearly 30 years of political instability, through the funding from the Republic of Korea, has teamed up with the Afghan Ministry of Information and Culture, to build a Cultural Center close to the boundaries of the Bamiyan World Heritage property. With the realisation of the Bamiyan Cultural Centre, Afghans have the opportunity to recapture their heritage, to create a new impact on a historical site and to foster a positive relationship between their struggles and their hopes.

“This new architectural programme can challenge cultural barriers, reaffirm Afghanistan’s remarkable ancient history and enforce culture as a foundational component to Afghan national identity and peace-building,” states UNESCO.

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DESIGN SHAPES LIFE: Villeroy & Boch Launches Bathroom Design Challenge

Courtesy of Villeroy & Boch

Villeroy & Boch have kicked off their first North American Designer Bathroom Challenge, inviting architects and licensed designers to develop a concept for a contemporary and multisensory bathroom design for the chance to win a trip to Germany.

Bathrooms are an essential part of daily life from the moment you jump into the shower in the morning to brushing your teeth before hopping into bed at night. While well-designed bath and wellness products that are easy to use and maintain are essential for functionality, when they are enhanced with complementing textures, sounds, scents and lighting, the functional bathroom space is transformed into a true multisensory experience. Villeroy & Boch is challenging architects and designers to incorporate both of these elements into their design, creating a functional and a multisensory space.

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Call For Proposals: Hello Nature!

Competition Site. Image Courtesy of

Combo Competitions’ latest ideas challenge, entitled Hello Nature!, centres on a site located in northern Sweden at the foot of a mountain (Omneberget), sat within an area called the High Coast (Höga Kusten) – which is also a World Heritage Site. This competition is looking for ”structures that celebrate nature”, which also involve elements of “both education and recreation, or – if you prefer – business and pleasure.” The wider question the competition poses is whether or not architecture can encourage involvement with nature. Previous Combo Competitions have included the London Cinema Challenge and Faith! A Place of Worship in London, both of which attracted a number of high quality proposals.

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Call for Ideas: Rome Community Ring

In partnership with La Sapienza University, Progetto Forti and Rome municipality, (YAC) is launching a competition to redesign one of the treasures of Rome: Forte Portuense.

How can former military architecture be transformed into a leisure time and cultural focal point? The aim is to look for ideas worth triggering urban redevelopment, social cooperation and tourism.

This architecture will become part of a network of leisure time facilities a hair’s breadth away from the very core of Rome.

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Van Alen Institute Launches Competition to Shape the Future of US National Parks

Courtesy of The Van Alen Institute

With over 275 million visitors to the United States‘ 401 national per year, what will be the experience of visitors in the 21st century? The Van Alen Institute has teamed up with the National Park Service to launch a new National Parks Now - a central component of Elsewhere: Escape and the Urban Landscape, the Institute’s initiative to investigate how the form and organization of the built environment shapes a need and desire for escape. Operating on the belief, stated by Van Alen Institute Executive Director David van der Leer, that “too few people realize what a huge resource these smaller national park sites are for local communities and for larger urban networks,” this initiative seeks to make parks relevant for the 21st century audience. More on the competition after the break.

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Competition: Re-Imagining The Athenaeum of Philadelphia

Imagine: After three years of careful dismantling, moving,  painstakingly re-assembling and most importantly, restoring, John Notman’s historic Athenæum building has finally arrived at its new location in Fairmount Park, where it will serve as the headquarters of  the newly formed chapter of the Friends of Brownstone (PhilaFOB). Flush with government funding from lottery and fracking  revenue, PhilaFOB made the Athenæum Board of Directors an offer it  couldn’t refuse.  So now, for the first time since 1845, the lot at 6th & St. James Streets  is vacant, and the Athenæum, still a vital independent lending and  research library, with growing architectural and design collections,  must re-imagine itself without its historic building. Given its  location and its corporate purposes, what might a mid-21st century  Athenæum look like?

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Inaugural Global Schindler Award Registration Now Open: Mobility in Shenzhen

Courtesy of Global Schindler Award

The Global Schindler Award is a new competition for students that will explore questions about universal mobility and access amidst rapid globalization and urbanization. In its inaugural year, a real site in Shenzhen – a booming commercial and industrial area adjacent to Hong Kong – has been chosen as the subject of the urban design proposals. Entrants are being asked to re-imagine the city as an inclusive urban environment and will be vying for portions of the $150,000 prize fund.

Students may compete as individuals or in teams, but must work under the supervision of a faculty member. Registration is open until November 15, 2014 and entries are due on January 31, 2015. The winners, which will be chosen by an esteemed panel of interdisciplinary jury members including landscape architect Kongjian Yu of Turenscape and architect Farshid Moussavi, will be announced in early 2015.

For more information, click here.

Future Ground Competition Open for Registration

Courtesy of

What will New Orleans look like in one year? Ten years? Fifty years? The Future Ground design competition, hosted by the Van Alen Institute, is looking for multidisciplinary teams help shape the city’s future by answering these questions. The competition is specifically looking for teams to “generate flexible design and policy strategies to reuse vacant land in New Orleans, transforming abandoned landscapes into resources for the city.”

Request for qualification applications are due September 29, 2014 and the three winning teams will be announced the following month. These three teams will be awarded $15,000 to participate in a six-month research and design process alongside national experts and local stakeholders. The outcome of their research will be socially, economically, and ecologically sensitive solutions that the New Orleans Redevelopment Authority (NORA) can implement and other cities can replicate.

For more information, click here.

eVolo 2015 Skyscraper Competition

eVolo Magazine is pleased to invite architects, , engineers, designers, and artists from around the globe to take part in the eVolo 2015 Skyscraper Competition. Established in 2006, the annual Skyscraper is one of the world’s most prestigious awards for high-rise architecture. It recognizes outstanding ideas that redefine skyscraper design through the implementation of novel technologies, materials, programs, aesthetics, and spatial organizations along with studies on globalization, flexibility, adaptability, and the digital revolution. It is a forum that examines the relationship between the skyscraper and the natural world, the skyscraper and the community, and the skyscraper and the city.

The participants should take into consideration the advances in technology, the exploration of sustainable systems, and the establishment of new urban and architectural methods to solve economic, social, and cultural problems of the contemporary city including the scarcity of natural resources and infrastructure and the exponential increase of inhabitants, pollution, economic division, and unplanned urban sprawl.

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Workshop and LEGO Architecture Studio Launch: Villa Pennisi in Musica

Courtesy of LEGO

LEGO® Architecture Studio, a new concept of the LEGO Architecture line, makes his appearance in Italy in an innovative context of architecture and music. The LEGO Group chose Italy and the prestigious setting of the Sicilian “Villa Pennisi in Musica” event for the launch of the new set of building blocks.

Villa Pennisi in Musica is an architecture and design-to-build summer school and a classical music masterclass, where young architects will be challenged to design and build and acoustic shell for outdoor chamber music concerts from a pile of uncut wood in less than ten days, and host a concert featuring, among others, world-class conductor Sir Antonio Pappano.

LEGO® Architecture Studio will be used during the workshop to help and architects ignite their imagination and to explore new ways of designing in LEGO forms. will also participate in a unique building competition to create 3D thematic models using the new LEGO Architecture Studio Set.

For more information, please click here.

Title: Workshop and LEGO Architecture Studio Launch: Villa Pennisi in Musica
Website: http://www.vpmusica.com/en/workshop/
From: Fri, 01 Aug 2014 
Until: Fri, 15 Aug 2014 
Venue: Villa Pennisi
Address: Piazza Agostino Pennisi, 29, 95024 Acireale , Italy

Call for Entries: Ideas to Remember

The series of earthquakes that began on 4 September 2010 altered the landscape and had a huge impact on the people. Now it’s time to create a place to remember.

The Canterbury Earthquake Memorial will honour the lives of those who died in Canterbury’s earthquakes and provide a place for individuals and groups to pay respect. It will acknowledge the shared trauma experienced by the people of Canterbury.

It will also give recognition to the people who participated in the rescue and recovery operation, and provide a special place for holding events, such as the annual memorial gathering on 22 February. Design ideas must be submitted by 12 noon ( Standard Time) on 22 August 2014.

For more information, please click here.

Moriyama RAIC International Prize

Raymond Moriyama FRAIC, the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada () and the RAIC Foundation have created the Moriyama RAIC International Prize to raise the international stature of the RAIC and the Canadian architectural profession.

The Moriyama RAIC International Prize will be awarded every two years. It will consist of a monetary award of CAD $100,000 and a handcrafted sculpture designed by internationally renowned Canadian designer Wei Yew. Every edition of the prize will feature a new piece by Wei Yew, each based on a separate and unique interpretation of the Canadian landscape.

The prize is awarded to an architect, team of architects, or architect-led collaboration, based anywhere in the world, in recognition of a single work of architecture that is judged to be transformative within its societal context and expressive of the humanistic values of justice, respect, equality and inclusiveness.

Three finalists will be identified in an open, juried selection process, and invited to attend a formal gala where the Moriyama RAIC International Prize winner will be announced and the prize presented. The inaugural gala will take place in Toronto on October 11, 2014. More information can be found here.

‘Next Big One’ International Open Ideas Competition

“NEXT BIG ONE” – an international open ideas organized by Architecture for Humanity Vancouver Chapter – raises awareness on the high-magnitude earthquake and tsunami events that plague cities around the world.  The hopes to call upon the design community to offer fresh perspectives and innovative ideas in designing for disasters.

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Typhoon Class Submarine Open Ideas Competition

Throughout the entire period of its existence, humankind was developing numerous methods of elimination of each other. And with invention of the nuclear weapons this desire has endangered the being itself. Matterbetter researches how the design community in contemporary world can contribute to making this world a little safer and more friendly.

Matterbetter invites architects and designers to participate in open-ideas that aims to explore the architectural potential and transform the biggest nuclear submarine ever built into a peaceful architectural object. 

Participants must register before August 24. For complete information, go to the competition’s official website.

Dalseong Citizen’s Gymnasium International Competition

The Daegu Architectural Culture Confederation (DACC) recently announced an international ideas to design the new gymnasium complex for the city of , South Korea.

The objective is to contribute to the improvement of the quality of life of Dalseong-gun’s citizens by procuring a space for health promotion and sports activities, offering the foundations by which to enjoy the benefits of sports, culture and welfare, and thus building a new gymnasium complex, replacing the small and outdated existing one.

Registration closes August 7 and the deadline for submission is September 5. You can find all the details in the competition’s official website.

Call for Entries: Pamphlet Architecture 35

Following the success of the inaugural call for entries, which produced the Pamphlets 23–30, Pamphlet Architecture, with renewed support from the National Endowment for the Arts, announces the 2014 .

To promote and foster the development and circulation of architectural ideas, is again offering an opportunity for architects, designers, theorists, urbanists, and landscape architects to publish their projects, manifestos, ideas, theories, ruminations, insights, and hopes for the future of the designed and built world. With far-ranging topics including the alphabet, algorithms, machines, and music, each Pamphlet is unique to the individual or group who authors it. This call for ideas seeks projects that possess the rigor and excitement found throughout the rich history of .

The deadline for submissions is September 1, 2014. The winning entry will engage important issues facing architecture, landscape architecture, and/or urban design today in a way that is as visually provocative as it is intellectually compelling. The winner will be given a grant of $2,500 to develop the proposal into an 80-page, black and white, 7-by-8½-inch book, which will be published by Pamphlet Architecture, Ltd. / Princeton Architectural Press as Pamphlet Architecture 35. The outcome of the competition will be announced on September 12, 2014, and entrants will be notified by e-mail. More information can be found here.

Competition: d3 Natural Systems 2014

Natural systems offer architects and designers significant potential as alternative, ecologically performative architectonic strategies. The d3 Natural Systems competition invites architects, designers, engineers, and students to collectively explore the potential of analyzing, documenting, and deploying nature-based influences in architecture, urbanism, interiors, and designed objects.

Established in 2009, the annual Natural Systems has grown to become a leading voice in sustainable architecture. Recently published in London-based Wiley-Blackwell AD journal’s theme issue “The New Pastoralism: Landscape into Architecture” as a leading example of environmental innovation, the annual d3 Natural Systems is an emerging voice in ecological architecture and one of the most notable awards in speculative, performance-based design. It recognizes exemplary ideas that redefine architecture as an ecological project through the implementation of advanced programs, technologies, materials, and social interventions that engage adaptability, globalization, and emergence.

The 2014 competition calls for innovative proposals that advance sustainable thought and performance through the study of intrinsic environmental geometries, behaviors, and flows.  By identifying, examining, and applying their structural order on form and function–bottom-up, performance-based solutions for limitless building typologies, functional programs, and material conditions may be realized.

For more information, please go to the competition’s official website.

Guggenheim Helsinki Design Competition

The Guggenheim Helsinki Design Competition, first open international organized by the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation, was officially launched today. Submission deadline for stage one is September 10. A jury that includes Mark Wigley, Jeanne Gang, Juan Herreros, and Yoshiharu Tsukamoto will announce the shortlist during Fall 2014.

Following a detailed Concept and Development Study by the Guggenheim Foundation, the City of Helsinki has reserved a prominent waterfront site for the architectural competition of the proposed museum. The site is located in the Eteläsatama, or South Harbor area, an urban space of great national and cultural significance, close to the historic city center and immediately visible to visitors arriving by sea.

It is envisaged that the Guggenheim Helsinki would organize and present internationally significant exhibitions of artworks from the twentieth and twenty-first centuries while also specializing in Nordic art and architecture. Within the Guggenheim Foundation’s international constellation of museums, including the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York, the Peggy Guggenheim Collection in Venice, the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, and the future Guggenheim Abu Dhabi, the Guggenheim Helsinki would be distinctive in its active inclusion of design and architecture in its programming.

Malcolm Reading Consultants are running the design competition. All enquiries should be directed here. For complete information please visit the competition’s official website.