what is architecture in the fourth dimension

The Design Challenge
As metropolises around the world continue to mature, the zones between their inner (historic) core and their outer (suburban) fringe evolve and mutate in many forms. This mid-polis conditionrepresents a fruitful opportunity to re-define urban connections between center and edge. With that in mind, we have selected a site that is ripe for such a new intervention. The site is located in Somerville, Massachusetts, an “inner suburb” also closely tied to the City of Boston through history, future transit connections and existing infrastructure.  This is the context for the competition challenge.

The competition asks entrants to consider how familiar and new urban patterns and building typologies can serve to redefine this mid-polis site.  The selected urban pattern and building types for this site will face significant challenges in the 21st century. They must be at the same time stable, lovable, energy effective infrastructures of space and form, adaptable to inevitable changes of use or function. How will the proposed urban morphology and building types support changing programmatic, economic and societal forces over time while maintaining a coherent built form that does not become functionally and stylistically obsolete in 30 – 50 years?  Thus, the key issue in this competition is the design of an urban fabric and more detailed design of one building type of enduring quality – so excellent that over 50 or more years, the uses and functions in the urban spaces and inside the buildings can change as cells are replenished in a living organism. That is the design challenge.

For a PDF of the competition challenge document, CLICK HERE.
The complete competition packet provided to entrants is available on the ARCHIVE PAGE.

The Organizers of the Competition are pleased to announce the winners of the 2011 Open Building Student Challenge
, selected by a distinguished international jury and supported generously by the competition sponsors. The competition concluded on July 15, 2011 and the following entries, selected from a pool of 86 projects from all over the world, have been recognized for their rigor in open building and urbanism:

The Eberle Open Building Award (First Prize): $3000
“Magnetic Field” by Sun Xiao, Wang Xiaochen, and Cai Meng of Qingdao Technological University

Original Poster (JPEG - Medium Size)
Original PDF (Large Size)

The Sunty Open Building Award (Second Prize): $2000
“The Urban Oasis” by Wang Jing, Xia JI, Zhu Siqi of Tianjin University

Original Poster (JPEG - Medium Size)
Original PDF (Large Size)
Third Prize: $750
“Filling the Gap” by Wu Hairong of Tianjin Institute of Urban Construction and Hai Liang of Tianjin University

Original Poster (JPEG - Medium Size)
Original PDF (Large Size)
Citation: $250
“The Cell” by Chen Rong of Tsinghua University

Original Poster (JPEG - Medium Size)
Original PDF (Large Size)
Citation: $250
“Big Box Landscape” by Soo Young Park of Yonsei University

Original Poster (JPEG - Medium Size)
Original PDF (Large Size)
Winners are asked to contact openarch@bsu.edu immediately for information regarding their awards and attendance of the conference in November 2011.

Thank you once again to our jury and sponsors for their involvement:

Competition Sponsors:
- Baumschlager&Eberle
- Sunty

- Siemens           
- CannonDesign      
- HOK               
- Ascension Health  
- Herman Miller     
- Paul Lukez Architecture

- Arup

Andres Mignucci (Andrés Mignucci Arquitectos  Puerto Rico)
Renee Chow (UC Berkeley, USA)
Paul Lukez (Paul Lukez Architecture, Boston, USA)
Zhang Lei (Nanjing University, China)
Shigeru Aoki (Tokyo Metropolitain University) and Shinichi Chikazumi (Japan)
Jaehoon Lee (Dankook University, Korea)
Phil Astley (UCL/Bartlett, London, UK)
Paul Strohm ( HOK Architects and Planners, USA)


Link to the 2009 student competition winning entries and finalists

Link to the 2008 student competition, with jury and winning entries
• Dr. Stephen Kendall, Conference Chair; Prof., Ball State University, Joint Coordinator, CIB W104
• Michael Gibson, Conference Co-Chair; Assist. Prof., Ball State University
• Dr. Jia Beisi, Assoc. Prof., University of Hong King, Joint Coordinator, CIB W104
• Dr. Kazunobu Minami, Prof., Shibaura Institute of Technology, Tokyo; Joint Coordinator, CIB W104
• Dr. Shin Murakami, Prof., Sugiyama Jogakuen University, Nagoya; Joint Coordinator, CIB W104
• Michelle Jiang Yingying, Secretary for China Affairs, CIB W104. michelle.jyy@gmail.com

Visit the 2008 Open Building conference website: Education for an Open Architecture