A national design competition in New Zealand featured the architectural works of 30 college students from different tertiary schools in the country.
The sixth annual ArchEngBuild contest involved 10 teams composed of three students that designed half of the homes assigned to them, while buyers will decide how to finish off the construction based on their preferences and budgets. The participating students are in their final year studying architecture, engineering and construction courses.
The teams used based their designs on Chilean architect Alejandro Aravena’s “incremental village” concept, which was previously used for the construction of 100 homes in Aravena’s home country. From the Len Lye Centre in New Plymouth, New Zealand, the students worked for two days in creating designs for the houses.
Joe Gammon, the ArchEngBuild contest coordinator, said that the contest aims to find a collaborative solution for home designs, which focus on the elements of architecture, engineering and building concepts. For buyers, the half-finished homes will let them choose whether to add certain features such as a frameless glass balustrade or a specific cladding material for interior spaces.
The contest advances the state of architecture in New Zealand ever since the country’s first institution, The School of Architecture and Planning at the University of Auckland, opened in 1917 to teach design courses. It will celebrate its 100th anniversary in September.
From then on, the school has focused on the importance of grooming students to be well-educated architects. The school’s expanded curriculum served as proof of this, as it currently offers 13 courses to around 800 full-time students each year. Subjects have also become more modernised, including urban planning, urban design and heritage conservation.
Home designs have evolved to align with changing trends in terms of using environment-friendly material, energy-efficient power sources and even aesthetic features.