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Decoding Density flyer

Urbanarium announces Decoding Density, the third installment of Canada’s largest affordable housing competition series. The competition highlights and challenges current building codes in order to explore apartment designs that emphasize outdoor space, communal-oriented features, and low-energy approaches to comfort and livability.

Decoding Density asks participants to consider six-storey plus wood-frame structures. The form has many benefits: simple, low-carbon construction, less excavation for underground parking, better contextual fit in low density neighbourhoods, and less shadowing than condominium towers. However, there are many building code restrictions that make it challenging to construct buildings that reflect the needs of individuals and families today. For example, cross-ventilation and access to sunlight are difficult to achieve within standard building footprints. Competition entrants are challenged to propose creative, liveable, and sociable housing forms, while highlighting the existing policies that are stopping their development. 

Eligibility:

  • This is a competition open to anyone from anywhere.
  • Entrants need not be registered professionals or local.
  • Entrants may be teams or individuals.
  • Multi-disciplinary teams and teams that include youth members are encouraged.
  • Entrants that have business relationships with members of the jury or advisors of the
    competition should not discuss their entries with those members.
  • Jury members will not know the identity of the entries until the winners have been decided. Jury sees only anonymous entries.
  • Those affiliated with a firm that is sponsoring the competition are eligible to enter as are those that work for the same municipalities as members on the Planners’ Advisory Panel.
  • Immediate family members and employees of design firms of jury members are not eligible to enter.

Prizes:

Overall Prize Winners:

  • First Prize $12,000 CAD
  • Second Prize $8,000 CAD
  • Third Prize $4,000 CAD
  • 5 Honourable Mentions $2,000 CAD each

Planners Prize Award:

  • Planners Prize $10,000 CAD
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