The Built Environment Trust has announced an ideas contest for innovative new ways to boost the night time economies of cities around the world
Backed by the Greater London Authority – the competition invites architects, landscape architects, planners, environmentalists, material scientists, economists, product designers, acoustic experts and others to draw up solutions for new 24-hour cities.
The overall winner will receive a £1,000 top prize and the 20 top entries will feature in a major exhibition focussing on new ways to promote urban after-dark economies dubbed Night Time is The Right Time inside The Building Centre. Two runners up prizes worth £500 each will also be awarded.
According to the contest announcement: ‘The brief is broad: we want big visions and detailed specific thoughts… all can be contenders for the exhibition, publication and prizes on offer.
‘Is there a new acoustic material that might revolutionise the design of music venues? Should developers be encouraged to design-in nightlife? How can landscape design help alleviate social problems? Could the energy of night-time revellers be harnessed to feed energy back into our cities? Futuristic ideas and practical solutions will both be welcomed.’
London’s night time economy contributes £26.3 billion to the capital’s annual GDP and supports one in 8 local jobs but is understood to be under threat from new inner city developments and a perception the sector is linked to noise and anti-social behaviour.
Around 35 per cent of London’s grassroots music venues have closed since 2007, causing concern over the future of the capital’s clubbing culture. London mayor Sadiq Khan appointed a new ‘night czar’ to promote the night time economy and turn around its fortunes last year.
The appointee, Amy Lamé arrived in London from New Jersey in 1992 and worked in a late night café-bar on the edge of Soho before co-founding the arts company and club night ‘Duckie’ at the Royal Vauxhall Tavern.
Lamé will judge the ideas contest alongside Carl Turner of Carl Turner Architects, Dipa Joshi of Assael Architecture and Dan Batterton – a fund manager specialising in build to rent at Legal & General Investment Management.
Submissions must include two A2-sized presentation boards featuring sketches, sitemaps, diagrams, photographs and charts alongside team biographies and a textual project description. Videos may also be included and the entrance fee is £25 or £10 for students.
The deadline for applications has been extended to 27 April.
How to apply
Visit the competition website for more information
The Building Centre
26 Store St