Detroit by Design 2012: Detroit Riverfront Competition

Sponsor: Detroit RiverFront Conservancy

Type: open, one-stage, ideas, digital and physical entry required

Language: English

Location: Detroit, Michigan

Fee: $100 (professionals); $100 for multiple students up to four entries


30 November 2012 – Submittal deadline

6 December 2012 – Symposium


First Place – $5,000

Second Place – $2,500

Third Place – $1,000


Daniel Libeskind – Studio Libeskind
Walter Hood – Hood Studio
Reed Kroloff – Cranbrook Academy of Art
Faye Alexander Nelson – Detroit Riverfront Conservancy
Lola Sheppard – Lateral Office

Site: The competition will focus on the area between Cobo Hall and the Renaissance Center and between Jefferson Avenue and the Detroit River. This section of Riverfront which includes Hart Plaza is at the heart of the city. The major streets from the radial street plan created by Augustus Woodward (based on L’Enfant’s layout of Washington D.C.) intersect just north of this site.

Design Challenge:

Create a vibrant public space that connects the city to the riverfront.

The program is direct and purposefully vague with the intention of generating creative solutions. Design solutions can be approached from an architectural, urban planning or artistic perspective. Multi-disciplinary teams are encouraged as a way to engage the unique challenges of the site. The clients are the diverse users that could potentially utilize this space – business people that are looking for somewhere to lunch on a sunny afternoon, families that come down for a festival, children out for a walk with their parents, tourist that have come to Detroit for the first time, local residents that go for a run after work, suburban couples that come downtown for a date or concert, Canadian neighbors looking across the water.

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