With the current housing crisis, the sub-prime mortgage meltdown, and rising energy costs, the future of suburbia looks bleak. That's why Dwell and Inhabitat are throwing down the gauntlet: Help us redesign the suburbs!
Calling all architects, urban planners, designers, engineers, and forward thinkers: Help us re-imagine a more sustainable suburban landscape. Tell us how you would reuse that behemoth single-family McMansion, or retrofit a vacant strip mall or a big box store to support local agriculture and produce 'burb-grown food. How could we begin to move toward a car-free neighborhoods, or harness renewable energy for community self-sufficiency? Where does one begin to create future-proof spaces and systems using the suburban structures of the present, from small-scale retrofits to large-scale restoration? These are but a few issues at hand; there are many more to consider. This is where you come in—we want to hear your ideas, proposals and solutions.
Out of twenty top finalists, one grand prize winner will be chosen by our panel of judges to receive a $1,000 cash prize and the highest honor of the competition. The grand prize winner will be featured on Inhabitat.com, Dwell.com and in Dwell magazine's "Future" issue in December 2009. Two runners up and a Readers' Choice winner will also be selected, based on an online voting period. The 2nd prize winner, 3rd prize winner, and Readers' Choice winner will all also be featured in the December issue of Dwell magazine.
You can submit as many entries as you like, but each individual entry should be focused on one singular design problem/solution (i.e. a McMansion farm rehab, a bicycle transportation hub, a piezoelectric, energy-generating freeway paving system). Entries will be judged on clarity of idea, usefulness of design, and visual/aesthetic appeal of renderings.