2016 AZ Awards of Merit: A+ Student Award

2016 AZ Awards of Merit: A+ Student Award

In this year’s AZ Award submissions, North American design students caught our attention with striking plans for a coastal development strategy, an inverted garden city and a user-friendly tea set. 

For the sixth annual AZ Awards, our intrepid jury narrowed the field from over 800 submissions, received from dozens of countries, to select just 48 finalists that stood above the rest. In addition to presenting the AZ Award winners, Azure recognized these projects, products and concepts with Awards of Merit.

The following three projects are Awards of Merit winners in the category of A+ Student Award.


Re-Generator: An Alternative Coastal Development
The expanding global population and rising sea levels are on a collision course, and coastal regions require a built environment that can accommodate the coming changes, according to Gabriel Muñoz Moreno of the Harvard University Graduate School of Design. In response, he has rendered, in beautiful detail, an elevated coastal development strategy, in the form of a Meccano-like network of modular platforms and permeable cells, as well as the connections that enable the two planes to co-exist: humans on top, brackish biosphere below. It may look like a gargantuan water park, but it succeeds in leaving no mark on the ecosystem below it. 

School: Harvard University Graduate School of Design, U.S. 

Designer: Gabriel Muñoz Moreno 


Within the Frame: The Country­side as a City
Students Nicolas Lee and Carly Augustine of the Harvard University Graduate School of Design painstakingly drew up this master plan for an inverted garden city, envisioning an alternative to the sprawl of China’s rapid urbanization. Through the looking glass of the Industrial Revolution, they propose a self-contained model for collective rural living, which uses the courtyard house as the predominant building block for a mixed-use development that encloses arable fields for communal agriculture. The concept aims to keep China’s rural population connected to the land and preserve their traditions while mitigating the impact on valuable farmland. 

Location: Zhengzhou, China 

School: Harvard University Graduate School of Design, U.S. 

Team: Carly Augustine and Nicolas Lee, with faculty advisors Christopher C. M. Lee and Simon Whittle  ­


Cradle Tea service
Conceived by Kristoffer Paolo Aguila, an industrial design student at OCAD University in Toronto, this integrated tea service and cart caters to anyone who suffers from the social discomfort that comes with dwindling manual dexterity. The striking birdlike form perches atop two brass twigs, surrounded by a Lazy Susan lined with standard Ikea teacups. It enables would-be hosts to roll, tilt and spin their way through pouring tea without having to grab, grip, pinch, pull – or clean up spills. 

School: OCAD University, Canada 

Team: Kristoffer Paolo Aguila with faculty advisor Angelika Seeschaaf Veres  ­

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