A few weeks ago, we shared our opinion on the benefits of the open architecture competition. Whether you believe entering competitions degrades architects because ideas are shared without monetary compensation, or whether you find that competitions inspire your creative edge, how about this scenario: a competition canceled one day after the submission deadline.
More about the canceled competition after the break.
The competition for the Kaohsiung Maritime Cultural & Popular Music Center included a brief that one participant explained as being “hundreds of pages long and required months of work and coordination with multiple consultants. Not to mention the cost of producing 15 hard copy books for the submission. For any office that did it the right way (meaning they paid their employees) the overall cost of investment is easily in the 10s and maybe 100s of thousands for this competition.”
The suspension of the competition is both unfortunate and unprofessional. As stated in the apology letter below, all submissions will be returned to the architects unopened; however, why are the proposals not archived for when the competition resumes?
Although the exact cause for cancellation is not known (the competition officials stated it was related to the jury selection), one participant felt that the lack of stararchitect involvement in the competition had something to do with it. Perhaps the jury was not satisfied with the firms participating and wanted to push the date farther back in the hopes of attracting other firms to submit proposals. Speculation, yes; but still an interesting theory.
Here is the cancellation notice from their website:
Date: June 8th, 2010 Dear Competition Participants:
Thank you for your participation in the Kaohsiung Maritime Cultural & Popular Music Center International Competition Project.
In order to ensure the process of the competition is conduced flawlessly, after thoughtful consideration, Kaohsiung City Government has decided to temporary suspend the competition. The delivered proposals will be returned without opening as soon as possible. For further information about the re-announcement of the competition, please visit our web site at: www.kpop.com.tw
I hope you can accept my sincerely apology. Thank you for your understanding.
Construction Office, Public Works Bureau, Kaohsiung City Government, Taiwan, R.O.C.
We’d like to know your thoughts, especially if you participated in the competition.
As seen on Archinect.