An online resource for designing a better world.

October 10, 2017
The Chicago Architecture Foundation (CAF) presents as an online platform for engaging students, teachers, and mentors in the design process. 

5th EARTH ARCHITECTURE COMPETITION: Designing a Rural Arts Center for Senegal

July 17, 2017
OBJECTIVE The objective is to design a modern mud type to be built as a unit of a residential vocational school for unemployed rural youths of ages 16 to 25 years to undergo a 2-year skills development training in the vocational arts and design. We want the school plan to emphasize sustainable architecture and cost efficient construction. Thus, we want the buildings to fully integrate earth architecture and passive solar design. The challenge is to design one of the following types for the school: a classroom type, cafeteria type, office building type, dormitory type, group toilet type, cafeteria type, dormitory type, dwelling type for the local teachers, and guest house type for our international visiting staff. Contestants are to design the school type for construction by maximum use of earth and local labor. Total costs of constructing the design entry is not to exceed $10,000 (USD) for materials and labor. The construction site will be Diakounda village in Sédhiou Region of the Casamance in Senegal. The jurors will use judging criteria involving form, function and technical issues to select three prize-winning designs. Specifically, the jurors will award prizes for first, second and third place consisting of a commemorative certificate and cash prizes to the winning designs as follows: 1st prize - $1,000 or construction of design in Senegal plus a trip to Senegal for a workshop to build the winning design (in case the winner does not reside in Senegal and to a maximum of 1 person); 2nd prize- Construction or $700 and 3rd prize- Construction or $400. Honorable mentions will be awarded. Every design team that makes the Top 40 Entries shortlist will be offered the opportunity to build their design in Senegal or Gambia in collaboration with the project organizers. The fee per entry is $40 for individual and $60 for a team for early registration (July 13-31) and standard registration (August 1-October 13) is $50 for individual and $70 for a team. Here is where to register: . For additional information, see the competition discussion board: . Take the design-build challenge! Make your name known! Let’s create change where it is most needed. 

Call for Entries: 2017 Rudy Bruner Award for Urban Excellence

February 13, 2017
The Rudy Bruner Award for Urban Excellence celebrates urban places that are distinguished by quality design and their social and economic contributions to our nation’s cities. Winners offer creative placemaking solutions that transcend the boundaries... Read More


March 4, 2015
Since 2004, the ecoMOD Project at UVA has worked with a variety of affordable housing organizations to create energy efficient and low impact housing units. The project teams include students and faculty from a variety of disciplines, and collectively they have designed, built and evaluated twelve housing units on eight sites.

Project Row Houses

March 4, 2015
Project Row Houses is a non-profit arts organization established by African-American artists and community activists in Houston's Third Ward. Their mission is to transform community through the celebration of art and African-American history and culture.

Red Feather Development Group

March 4, 2015
Red Feather Development Group is a non-profit that partners with American Indians to improve quality of shelter via sustainable augmentation.

Kadushin Associates Architects and Planners

March 4, 2015
Kadushin Associates Architects and Planners is a firm with expertise in neighborhood and sustainable community-oriented design master plans, publically assisted affordable residential and mixed-use projects.

Mitchell Interdisciplinary Public Interest Design Studio

March 4, 2015
The Mitchell Interdisciplinary Public Interest Design (PID) Summer Institute offers a high impact learning experience for upper-level undergraduate and first-year graduate students, including a three-week studio and two-week build practicum for applied community projects in the Bryan/College Station area.

Center for Housing and Urban Development

March 4, 2015
The Center for Housing & Urban Development (CHUD) is an independent research center where students and faculty can best conduct research on housing, sustainable deveopment and urban planning.

Environmental Works

March 4, 2015
Environmental WORKS is a non-profit community design center, which advocates the improvement of the physical, economic and social environment by providing sustainable architectural and planning services to low-income community groups throughout the Pacific Northwest.


March 4, 2015
DesignBuildBLUFF is a non-profit organization that builds environmentally sustainable homes in the Navajo Nation. It introduces first-year graduate students in architecture to the culture and history of Utah’s desert southeast, where they design, and ultimately build a home for a Navajo Family.

Shelter with Spirit

March 4, 2015
Shelter with Spirit works in partnership with other Central Texas non-profits to provide grants for shelter renovation projects, which will enable families in need to avail themselves of green building technology.

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