June 15, 2008
by Canadian Architect
Architecture for Humanity and AMD are proud to announce the winners of the 2007 AMD Open Architecture Challenge: Digital Inclusion, a global competition to develop technology facilities for communities in need, from the 50×15 Africa Partner Summit in Cape Town, South Africa. The competition received 566 registered entries from 57 countries. The winners, including one overall competition winner and two regional site winners, were determined by an international review board of jurors comprised of architects, technologists, and community members. The overall competition winner and Africa challenge site winner is The Global Studio of Seattle, Washington, for its design of a technology media lab and recording studio for SIDAREC, located in an informal settlement of Nairobi, Kenya. With the construction of this media lab, Lucy Mathai and George Onyango, both founders of SIDAREC, hope their community will become “the next Silicon Valley.”
The competition was announced at the 2007 TED Conference and launched at the 2007 World Economic Forum on Africa in June. AMD sponsored the 2007 challenge through 50×15, a global initiative founded by AMD with the goal of enabling affordable Internet access and computing capability for 50 percent of the world’s population by the year 2015.
The winners of the South American challenge site are Igor Taskov of Nis, Serbia and Heather Worrell and ChunSheh Teo of Indianapolis, Indiana, for their design of a fair trade chocolate factory and technology hub for Kallari Association in Ecuador. The winner of the Asia challenge site is Max Fordham LLP & Nick Lawrence of London, UK, for an innovative telemedicine centre for Nyaya Health in the remote mountains of western Nepal.
Architecture for Humanity also awarded its Founders Award to the third-place Asia challenge finalist, Studio Wikitecture, for embracing a truly collaborative way of working using online crowd sourcing and Second Life as a way to create a highly participatory design approach.
As the winner of the 2007 AMD Open Architecture Challenge, The Global Studio will see their ideas come to life in the heart of the Mukuru Kwa Njenga settlement in Nairobi, Kenya. With full construction financing made possible with funding by AMD and the 50×15 Initiative, the team will collaborate with Architecture for Humanity and SIDAREC, the recipient local community organization, to build their winning solution. The Global Studio’s innovative design will help empower and enrich the lives of thousands of children in the heart of this vast unplanned settlement.
Additionally, each of the three winning teams receives a US$5,000 travel stipend to travel on site and work with the respective community organizations to further develop and refine the design. Architecture for Humanity is currently seeking additional funds to construct the solutions for the sites in Ecuador and Nepal.
For more information, please visit www.openarchitecturenetwork.org/challenge/pressrelease