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Architecture students win top prize at international design competition

A team of postgraduate architecture students are celebrating international success after beating competition from across the globe to secure first place in a prestigious design competition.

Archiecture plan

Graham Davey, Joe Earley, Jade Moore and Michele Prendini scooped the top prize in the Better Philadelphia Challenge 2019, in which entrants were tasked with reimagining a neighbourhood that has struggled with drug abuse in the U.S city.

Student Jade Moore said: “Having to address issues that are so unfamiliar to our everyday lives made the project challenging and also so interesting.

“We were able to engage with people that have entirely different experiences to us and that was incredibly eye opening.”

The team were in contact with residents from the Kensington neighbourhood during the design process, submitting a final entry that impressed judges with its solutions to tackling other underlying issues that are commonplace in the area.

As part of their prize, they will fly to Philadelphia to accept their award and present their ideas to a team of experts.

It is the second high-profile award the School of Architecture has received for its community-focused designs recently, after the New Wortley Community Centre was named as one of the best breakthroughs made by a British university by Universities UK.

Simon Warren, Senior Lecturer at the Leeds School of Architecture, said: “I’m really pleased for the students, they worked terrifically well as a team, put in a lot of hard work, complemented each other brilliantly and enjoyed it.”

“Having a social agenda in architecture, as we did in this project and with the New Wortley Community Centre, shows how we as a university are responding to the significant issues that face our communities.”

To view the winning team's plans, click here.

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