Architecture Students continue awards triumph
The annual Edmund N. Bacon Urban Design Awards based in Philadelphia, USA challenges students from around the world to address real-world urban design issues in the city which could also be relevant to other global urban communities.
This year’s challenge was to redesign a 1300-acre former oil refinery. Students were asked to look at options for the future of the site, considering how a developer and the City could work with neighbourhoods and businesses in the area to resolve their needs, which are often in conflict.
The group of 13 third year students studying Architecture came up with a 30 year regeneration plan including ten community led institutions focussing on things like recycling, affordable housing, sustainable transport, urban play, music and culture and including an Institute of Racial and Environmental Reconciliation.
This is the fifth time LBU students have been among the winners in the Edmund N. Bacon Urban Design Awards.
They received their runners up prize in on online ceremony on Thursday 11 February.
Senior Lecturer Simon Warren has seen previous cohorts succeed in the competition but said this year’s achievement was especially impressive as entries are usually from students with a lot more experience: “This international ideas competition is aimed at postgraduate students, as the past winners have proven, and this year’s site in Philadelphia is the most complex yet.
“So, for undergraduate architecture students to receive one of the runners up awards, is exceptional. And consider this, they have mostly only been studying architecture for just over two years. They worked incredibly well together on their joint entry and I am really proud of them.”
The group completed their entry while undertaking socially distanced learning. Team member, Paige Jones, admitted this presented challenges and opportunities: “Working on the competition as a collective was great. We were able to collaborate everyone’s ideas and use each member’s individual strengths to create the entry. Simon was a great tutor throughout the competition process; he made sure we all had the necessary tools to complete the entry.”
Charlotte Whittles was another team member and admitted the group had mixed feelings when they submitted their entry: “We were really pleased with what we had sent off but none of us really expected to do as well as we did, except our tutor Simon. He told us a few times we were really in with a chance, but since it was mostly a post grad competition I for one didn’t really believe him.
“It was really uplifting to see the confidence he had in us though, so when we received that email saying we were runners up we were all ecstatic and for me personally it really boosted my confidence in myself and my work, as I am sure it did for the rest of the group as well”
The university has a history of success in the competition with a double win last year when two groups secured the 2020 Winner’s Prize and a Special Jury Prize.
An LBU team also took home the main prize in 2019 and a Special Jury Prize was awarded in 2015.
Community Led Institutions as Catalysts for Regenerative Reconstruction.