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International Open Design Competition for the redesign of Maidstone’s High Street

The RIBA Competitions Office is pleased to announce the launch of a new two-stage, International Open Design Competition on behalf of Maidstone Borough Council

Through creative and innovative use of design and public art, the competition is seeking ideas and approaches for a circa GBP £4m public realm improvement project for the High Street in Maidstone’s town centre.

Submissions are invited from multi-disciplinary design teams, which must be led by a practising, registered architect or landscape architect. A Judging Panel will select up to five design proposals from the anonymous Stage 1 submissions to go through to the Stage 2 of the competition. Anonymity will then be lifted, with each short-listed team receiving an equal honorarium payment of GBP £5,400 (+VAT) to further develop their design proposal. The schemes will be subject to public display and consultation prior to presentations to the Judging Panel at a final interview.

The winning design proposal will need to have a clear public art focus that will revitalise the High Street and its environs, enhance Maidstone’s distinctiveness as the County Town of Kent and improve the town centre’s physical and visual connectivity to the River Medway. The winning scheme will need to be a practical, deliverable solution that will offer long-term sustainability and successfully rebalance the competing needs of pedestrians, vehicles and traffic. It should reinvigorate the town centre, as a pleasant place to shop, visit, live and work.

For details of how to register for the Maidstone High Street Competition and to view the full Competition Brief please visit

Please note that registrations will close on 26 February 2009, and the deadline for Stage 1 design submissions is 2.00pm on 5 March 2009.

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