Double success for Leeds Beckett University students in international design competition
14 January 2020
Two teams of Master of Architecture and BA Graphic Design students from Leeds Beckett University are celebrating international success after beating global competition to secure two awards in a prestigious design competition.
This is the second year in a row that Leeds Beckett University students have won the top prize in the Edmund N. Bacon Design Awards, a yearly competition for students of design based in Philadelphia, USA.
Every year a different area of Philadelphia is chosen and students from around the world put forward an urban design proposition to improve it. Competition entrants were tasked with reimagining how the Germantown neighbourhood of the US city could be designed to better support the local community, improve safety and accessibility for pedestrians and help reveal all the nearby amenities.
Ayomide Adediran, Krista Atanasova, Carlos Saurith and Rhys Jones achieved the top prize in Philadelphia for their project: Platforms for People.
Krista Atanasova said: “It feels amazing for us to have won the first prize. This is success on a world stage and a great start to the new year.
“After identifying some of the main issues, we have proposed Platforms for the People of Chelten Avenue. This is to be interpreted both metaphorically and physically as an urban regenerative approach.
“The method is to push back the fabric of buildings and pull forward the history and the people. This begins to highlight important structures and address wayfinding. Platforms celebrate the people of Germantown. Each has a unique identity based upon our research and talking to the community.”
Fellow Leeds Beckett University students, Gabrielle Beaumont, Lily Street, Roberto Zanini, Katie Hopkins, Lois Melling, Noah Harrowes and Dominik Augustynowicz secured the Jury Prize for their project: Green Connect.
Gabrielle Beaumont said: “Our proposal created a bio-economy for residents to grow and sell healthy foods through the use of a modular growing structure which we implemented across the avenue.
“My project team was composed of Master of Architecture students and BA Graphic Design students. Working together with different design disciplines has been a new experience and has generated some interesting and creative ideas, with the graphic design students getting more involved within the architectural creative process.
“I am very pleased the team won the 'Economy Builder' Jury Prize, this was a great reward and recognition for all the hard work that the team put in to this project.”
As part of their prize, the students who were tutored by Simon Warren from Architecture and Andy Edwards from Graphic Design, will fly to Philadelphia to accept their award and present their ideas to a team of experts.
Simon Warren, Senior Lecturer at the Leeds School of Architecture, said: “The double success of LBU’s students in this international ideas competition is a reflection of the quality of the courses in The School of Arts and the engagement of students who have worked incredibly hard to achieve this success.
“Both of the projects are intelligent and very well communicated. I’ve been particularly impressed with how students, working from Leeds, have understood the context and issues on the ground in Philadelphia.
“It is pretty clear that this resonated with the judges. I’m looking forward to hearing about their amazing time in Philadelphia when they return from the awards ceremony in February.”
To view the winning team's plans, visit https://www.philadelphiacfa.org/2020-big-picture-revealing-germantown%E2%80%99s-assets