Call for entries: Can a building clear the air?

Screen Shot 2016-03-07 at 11.46.19 AMCommunity Forests International (CFI) is excited to announce its second architectural design competition for the backwoods cabin of the future.  The first, hosted in 2014, drew in over 50 entries from 11 different countries and served as a platform for exploring how humans can get back to nature in the 21st century.  Bringing together visionary architects, artists, green builders and DIYers, this new challenge addresses the climate crisis and will help transform the organization’s 235 hectare (580 acre) organic farm and forest outside of Sussex, New Brunswick, Canada into a Rural Innovation Campus.

Buildings contribute 30% of annual global greenhouse gas emissions and consume more than 40% of global energy. The building sector is such a large contributor that if we don’t figure out how to reduce its impact we’re locking ourselves into worst-case scenario climate change.  It’s a deal-breaker.

The good news is that like all big problems this presents an equally great opportunity.  The building sector has the biggest potential for delivering significant greenhouse gas reductions at low or no-cost – more than transportation, agriculture, or waste.

For the intrepid designer the bar is now set. Can we reshape our built environment so that it supports our natural environment?  Can a building help heal the climate?

The winning cabin design from this competition will be constructed in the summer of 2016 and will accommodate students, guests, and innovators-in-residence on campus.  The winning team will receive a $1,000 cash prize.

Compact size and efficiency are important.  Although there is no minimum size in this challenge, the shelter’s ground level footprint must not exceed 17.09 square meters (or 184 square feet).  It should sleep at least two and provide for a woodstove.  Loft accommodation may be considered, and additional features such decks, tables and seating are optional.

There is no registration required for the competition, and entries are due on March 26, 2016. 

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