An open international ideas contest has been announced to rethink the centre of Sudbury, Northern Ontario
The free-to-enter anonymous competition invites multidisciplinary teams to creatively reimagine the urban core of the historic mining city, which aims to achieve zero-carbon emissions by 2050. Proposals could focus on creating a new library, art gallery, conference centre, performance centre, or affordable housing and may focus on existing railways lands in the city centre.
The call for high-level concepts, organised by the McEwen School of Architecture at Laurentian University, will identify a range of design principles which could shape future development in the settlement which aims to become a global showcase for sustainable development. It features two categories with the first open to everyone and the second for students only.
According to the brief: ‘Greater Sudbury’s urban core represents the origin of the community. In its early years, for the booming mining industry, it was the place to live, shop, govern, celebrate, worship and entertain. As with many mid-sized North American cities, the urban core has gone through profound changes in recent decades. Retailing has moved to suburban shopping centres, big-box retail, and electronic shopping.
‘Faced with vacant space at both street level and upper stories, the deterioration of the downtown has contributed to a negative overall image and declining tax revenue. The city; however, is constantly working to revitalize its core. One of the newest additions to the downtown core was the McEwen School of Architecture (MsoA), which opened in 2013. One of the goals of that project was to revive the urban core and act as a catalyst for economic growth.’
Sudbury is a major city of around 160,00 people in Northern Ontario which is known locally as the ‘Nickel Capital of the world.’ The settlement is located where a meteorite struck 1.8 million years ago and revealed large amounts copper, platinum, palladium, gold and nickel.
Sudbury grew rapidly during the 19th century as a mining camp and the industry continues to play an important role in local employment although in recent decades it has seen a shift towards high-tech employment and sustainable enterprises. Around CAD $300 million worth of regeneration projects are currently planned for the city centre.
The contest seeks ideas to connect the urban core with Northern Ontario’s wider natural landscape and which reflect the strong multicultural character of the local community. Other key ambitions including rebranding Sudbury as an ‘international city’ and a centre for research, education, and economic activity while also attracting ‘new generations of the best and brightest talent.’
Submissions may be in English or French and should include up to 1,200-words of written description, a maximum of four display panels featuring images, and a two-minute long video.
The competition jury has yet to be announced but is expected to feature architects, academics, and community representatives. The overall winner of the open category will receive CAD $50,000.
The top entry to the student category will take home CAD $10,000 while the winner of the people’s choice prize will be awarded CAD $3,000. All three winners will also be invited to present their schemes at a workshop in Sudbury.
The deadline for applications is 6pm local time (EST) on 28 August.
How to apply
Visit the competition website for more information
McEwen School of Architecture
85 Elm Street