Urban Agriculture, Climate Change Ideas Competitions Announce Winners

Terreform ONE announced the winners of an ideas competition focused on creating productive green spaces in cities. “Mowing to Growing: Reinventing the American Lawn” called for new strategies for urban food production that can leverage existing infrastructure and work well within local conditions (see earlier post).

A high-profile jury considered 202 entries from 850 people in 20 countries, including concepts that offered vertical farms, neighborhood farms, farms on vacant lots, front lawns, strip malls, roof tops, river barges, and reused abandoned infrastructure. The entries were narrowed down to two winners and four finalists. Each winner received $5,000.

Some details on the two winners:

Super Levee Urban Farming (AGENCY Architecture, LLC): “The project proposes a global system of levees, serving also as a new  brand of urban farms at the city’s edge, preserving local ecologies while protecting cities from emerging dangers. Each stage of the levee supports the next. Clippings, compost, and surplus crops from farming levels are used as nutrients and food for a series of fish farms, marshes, and restorative dune ecologies. Waste from marine life and nutrients from algal habitats are then used to fertilized farm levels, making the levee a complete ecology.”

NORC Farms (Thread Collective and the Greenest.Net): “The Naturally Occurring Retirement Community (NORC) Farms engages the aging New Yorkers population and inaccessible lawns in order to ‘create and cultivate farm plots and social spaces within public housing complexes.’ NORC FARMS will use urban agriculture to transform grass into a socially, ecologically, economically productive space; activate older New Yorkers, and transforming public housing into local agriculture; where the tower in the park becomes the tower in the farm.” 

Finalists include: Growforgold.org; Feed Toronto: Growing the Hydro Fields; and Reclaiming: Reconsidering the American Strip Mall. (One additional finalist’s brief couldn’t be accessed).

In Sydney, the Australia Institute of Landscape Architects (AILA) announced the winners of Sea Change 2030+, an international ideas competition designed to showcase ideas for planning, designing and managing for adaptation to urban sea level rise (see earlier post).

The three winners include:

Local Solutions (James Nash, Michael Marriott, Lydia Gibson, Bec Stephens): “Their project, based on the iconic Balmoral Beach, shows the value of typological analysis and performance responses for micro-scale harbour features such as beaches and rock platforms with an emphasis on access and amenity. This responds to the Sydney lifestyle and its focus on water-based amenity, and also deals with the challenges of sea level rise.”

Subtropical Sydney (Pierre Bélanger, Miho Mazereeuw, Christina Milos, Andrew tenBrink, Erik Prince, Sarah Thomas): “They propose a vision for re-engineering the urban form for cleaner waterways, recreational areas food production in urban gardens and improved access, amenity and mobility along green arteries. Their design integrates scales of place and time while producing a high value corridor for desirable and sustainable living.”

Embassy of the Drowned Nations (Bob Earl, Shahreen Alford, Simon Bond, Liam Butt, Katie Cooper, Daniel Firns, Ali Gaunt, Rosie Krauss,  Ben Nacard, Simon Trick): “This bold venture, the Embassy of Drowned Nations, extends a hand of connection and friendship as the Harbour Bridge and Opera House did in the last century. By providing a meeting place and forum for adapting to climate change it opens the debate on conceptual engagement with other drivers of global environmental change, particularly around population and resource use.”

View the winning ideas

Image credits: (1) AGENCY Architecture, LLC, (2) Embassy of Drowned Nations 

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