Career StagesYoung Architects Forum
The AIA Young Architects Forum (YAF) and the AIA Committee on Design (COD) invites architects, interns, students, and allied design professionals (planners, landscape architects, contractors, interior designers, engineers, product representatives) to submit sketches to the international 2012 YAF/COD Ideas Competition.
In this unique design competition, submitters are asked to explore innovative design proposals for educating and encouraging Americans to live a healthier life. Obesity-related diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, chronic depression, and certain cancers are the biggest public health epidemics of our time. Physical inactivity and unhealthy diets are responsible for more premature deaths than anything except tobacco use.
Today, the design and construction industry has a chance to be a part of the solution which combats our physically inactive and unhealthy lifestyles, similar to how architects and urban reformers in the 19th and early 20th century helped defeat infectious diseases like cholera and tuberculosis. Only instead of inventing life-safety codes, mandating adequate ventilation, or providing for sanitary drinking water; we can begin to retrofit our cities and communities as environments which promote active and healthier lifestyles.
Honorary Mention: Disco Starfish
Team Members: Amrita Raja, Angela Watson, and Luke Voiland
Honorary Mention: Grocercize
Team Members: Eleanor Kebabian and David Brooks
Honorary Mention: Project Nucleus
Team Members: Steven Greco, Gavin Sharp, Benjamin Strain, Jeffery Fleischer, and Amanda Urban all with HDR Denver.
Honorary Mention: The Urban Hike: A Trail for Better Health
Team Members: Cameron Toler
A growing body of research suggests that strategic architectural and urban design interventions may help to promote healthy living by prompting physical activity. In response to that commendable goal, the objective of this design competition is to create such an intervention within the urban environment; an intervention that serves to engage people in a form of physical activity that ultimately benefits their health and wellbeing. Aside from this overarching design objective, competition participants are encouraged to look for solutions that create a visually stimulating, informative, and enjoyable experience for the general public, with the possibility of special emphasis toward capturing the attention of children.
Regarding the size and scope of proposed interventions, participants should focus their designs toward the human scale. In other words, this competition does not aim to find design solutions at the regional or macro-urban scale. As a baseline for scale, entries may use an approximate footprint of 2,500 square feet – either in a single contiguous space or divided into various components that are in relative proximity to one another.
Similarly, as a baseline for scope, entries should assume a budget of no more than $25,000 as a rough order of magnitude for their intervention’s material cost. This budget, however, is not intended to limit the potential solutions, but rather to promote interventions that can be readily realized by municipalities, developers and the like. While not a requirement, the ability to replicate a solution into a number of contexts may also be of merit.
Emphasis on other considerations such as constructability, durability, sustainability, and accessibility are also left to the discretion of the entrant, but will factor into the jury’s evaluation of each entry.
Entrants are given wide latitude in determining the form, function, and style of their designed interventions: ranging from designs that reactivate under-utilized urban areas through adaptive reuse, infill development, and/or retrofit, to new construction, to public art, public furniture, temporal installation, and beyond.
While the nature of the interventions remains largely open to the interpretation of the entrant, participants are expected to provide a concise description of their design objectives and to demonstrate how their proposed solution(s) achieve those objectives in a thoughtful and deliberate way. Documentation depicting a concise solution would include physical or theoretical context, relevant research, legible drawings, renderings, details, plus any other visual and/or narrative information required to thoroughly explain the proposed design intervention.
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