Housing for 8 to 80: winners of open student design competition announced

AD (Architectural Design) and Bouygues Batiment International (BBI), a subsidiary of Bouygues Construction, are delighted to announce the winners of the ‘Architecture and the Third Age’ competition which aimed to encourage innovative ideas around housing and lifestyle.

From a high standard of over 150 entries which were judged anonymously, three winners were selected – Liam Watford, Masters in Architecture student University of Portsmouth; Marco Possos, Masters in Architecture student Leeds Metropolitan University; and Mimi Kwan, Masters in Architecture student Leeds Metropolitan University.

Joint runners-up were: Amy Featherstone and Robyn Holden (Leeds Metropolitan University), and Srijon Barua and Samain Sabrin (Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology). Commended in the ‘Communities’ category were Lea Olsson and Anne-Ragnhild Larsen (School of Architecture, Copenhagen), and Alessandra Upton and Rob Miller (Leeds Metropolitan University). Commended in the ‘Interiors’ category were Julia Fischer (Manchester Metropolitan University), Jason Miles Fowler (Oxford Brookes University), and Danielle Green (Manchester Metropolitan University).

The competition was open to all undergraduate and postgraduate students of architecture, interior design and related subjects, with no more than two people allowed to submit jointly. It attracted entries from students in over 30 institutes or universities in 11 countries: from Denmark, England, France, Ireland and Scotland in Europe, to Bangladesh, China, Malaysia, Ethiopia, India and Vietnam further afield. This international scope enabled the cultural issues that surround ageing to be represented from a global perspective.

Colin Tedder, Bouygues UK, Construction Central South, Technical Director, accompanied the winners to Paris for a two-day visit to the eco-friendly ‘Challenger’, Bouygues Construction’s Headquarters, near Versailles. The winners presented their ideas to BBI’s Research and Development Director, Trino Beltran, generating a positive discussion.

The students were also able to view a range of innovations in construction from the latest ideas around sustainable use of energy in Buildings to visiting an interactive virtual reality suite at the Cite des Sciences in Paris.

All the winning, running up and commended entries will be included in forthcoming edition of AD, Designing for the Third Age: Architecture Redefined for a Generation of “Active Agers”, which will be published in April 2014, guest-edited by Lorraine Farrelly.

Helen Castle, editor of AD said of the winning entries:

“The competition could not been more diverse in its design responses: from the visionary and biomorphic to the pragmatic with the adaptation of terraced housing and specific buildings and some interesting modular/kit proposals. Entrants applied a whole palette of features and devices to ensure adaptability: modular segments, shipping containers, prefabrication, bi-fold and folding doors, flexible furniture on pulleys and permeable walls. They also grasped the importance for young and old, of letting the outside in and included green walls, balconies, rooftop gardens and courtyard spaces in their designs.

“The winners distinguished themselves by their openness to engage with the wider urban and social implications of demographic change. Cooperation Street, the winning joint entry by Marco Possos and Mimi Kwan from Leeds Metropolitan University, stood out for its inventive solution at the neighbourhood scale, advocating community and cross-generational housing. It went beyond the notion of the single dwelling. Mood Wall House by Liam Whitfield at University of Portsmouth provided his own novel take on retrofitting, repurposing the terrace house for older occupants with the aid of new technology/social media, tackling the social alienation and loneliness that is so often a feature of old age.”

Colin Tedder said:

“Bouygues as a whole company has both a local presence in the areas that it works but also an international capacity so we are delighted to be involved in a competition that reflects this.

“It was great for us to get involved with projects linked to innovation and sustainability, two topics that are a great interest to the company, and be able to introduce members of the future generation of architects from different parts of the world to Bouygues Batiment International.”

The work of the shortlisted students will be exhibited in March 2014, when the edition of AD will be published, at the University of Portsmouth and a prize giving presentation for the winners will also take place at this time.