2015 Better Philadelphia Challenge Announces Award Winners

2015 Better Philadelphia Challenge Announces Award Winners


Contact: Elizabeth Paul, CPSM

Title: Director of Communications
Phone: 215-569-3186 ext. 104
Email: [email protected]

2015 Better Philadelphia Challenge Announces Award Winners

Winners to be honored in a ceremony at Moore College of Art and Design on February 18, 2015 featuring a talk by Dr. Judith Rodin, President of the Rockefeller Foundation and 2015 Edmund N. Bacon Prize winner.

Philadelphia, PA, December 10, 2014 – The Philadelphia Center for Architecture (CFA) and the Ed Bacon Memorial Committee is pleased to announce the winners of the 2015 Better Philadelphia Challenge competition and Edmund N. Bacon Prize. The Better Philadelphia Challenge is an annual competition challenging university-level students from around the world to address real-world urban design issues in Philadelphia.

This year’s Challenge was to reinvent Petty Island – a 292-acre island located in the Delaware River between the cities of Philadelphia and Camden and currently serving as a storage site for petroleum tanks and cargo containers. This year’s competition received 26 entries from 17 different schools in 11 states and 4 countries including Russia, Germany, and the United Kingdom.

The 2015 Better Philadelphia Challenge winners were selected by an esteemed jury including Thomas Corcoran of Delaware River Waterfront Corporation, Rebecca Johnson of CFA and AIA Philadelphia, Barry Seymour of Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission, and Stephanie Shaw of The Trust for Governors Island, NY.

First Place was awarded to a team from Cornell University which included Akshali Gandhi, Robert Hanifin, Li-Yu Pan, Chen Sun, and Lishutong Zhang. The team’s submission – The Delaware Valley FOODWORX – envisioned Petty Island as part of a multiphase approach to addressing the growing food security issues in the Philadelphia region. The proposal serves as a catalyst for sustainable, innovative, and long-lasting growth, and includes the creation of an agricultural college, seed bank, sky farm, discovery center, and farmers market on the island while upgrading the Philadelphia riverfront with food distribution warehouses, marina, commons building, and recreational fields. In addition to the overall challenge winner, the jury selected four additional teams to receive special honors. Those honorees, in no particular order, are as follows:

A Bio Fuel Future – submitted by Leeds Beckett University
Team: Asma Dauleh, Freddie Garside, & Nick Husband

Proposal Summary: Petty Island will grow to become a self-sustained and renewable energy engineering site, encompassing within it the potential for Research, Education, and Preservation.

Radiant Seed – submitted by Cornell University
Team: Jorge Champin, Darren Graffuis, Petra Marar, Hobum Moon, & Qianqian Ye

Proposal Summary: Petty Island is reimagined as a Community College specializing innovative green infrastructure, renewable energy and sustainable food production logistics, installation and maintenance.

The Oasis – submitted by Novosibirsk State Academy of Architecture and Fine Arts
Team: Alexandra Starostina

Proposal Summary: Creation of a continuous "green" route, which includes Petty Island and both banks of the Delaware River, and connected to parks inside the city creating a green frame for the city where people could relax, spend free time, and enjoy life.

From Dregs to Destination – submitted by Cornell University
Team: Stephanie Buglione, Mujahid Powell, Levi Schoenfeld, Xiao Shi, Ge Yi, & Shuqi Zhang

Proposal Summary: Designing more efficient systems that cooperate together to improve quality of life and landscape and re-envision Petty Island as a destination of environmental, cultural and economic growth in Philadelphia.

In conjunction with the Better Philadelphia Challenge, The Ed Bacon Memorial Committee selected Dr. Judith Rodin, President of the Rockefeller Foundation, as the 2015 Bacon Prize honoree. A former president of the University of Pennsylvania and provost of Yale University, Dr. Rodin is the first female president of The Rockefeller Foundation, a philanthropic organization that promotes the well-being of humanity. Dr. Rodin’s focus at the Foundation has centered on helping people, communities, and institutions build greater resilience to everyday challenges.

Dr. Rodin will have a conversation with Daily News Editor Sandra Shea about the ideas featured in her new book, "The Resilience Dividend," at an awards celebration where the winning team of the Better Philadelphia Challenge will receive a $5,000 prize. The program will be held on Wednesday, February 18, 2015 from 5:30 – 8:30 pm at Moore College of Art + Design, 1916 Race Street, Philadelphia, PA 19107. The evening includes a VIP reception, awards ceremony, talk, and coffee and dessert reception. To purchase tickets visit philadelphiacfa.ticketleap.com/bacon-2015/




About the Philadelphia Center for Architecture
The Center for Architecture performs the charitable and educational work of the Philadelphia chapter of the American Institute of Architects and serves as the physical home for the Chapter in Center City Philadelphia. The Center offers walking tours, exhibitions, lectures, workshops, and children's programming on architecture, urban planning, and design. The Center is also home to the AIA Bookstore & Design Center and the Community Design Collaborative. For more information visit: philadelphiacfa.org.

About the Better Philadelphia Challenge
Founded in 2006 in memory of Philadelphia’s iconic 20th century city planner, Ed Bacon [1910-2005], this annual international competition challenges university-level students from around the world to address real-world urban design issues in Philadelphia that have application not only to our city, but to urban centers around the globe. For more information visit: philadelphiacfa.org/competitions/better-philadelphia-challenge.

About the Edmund N. Bacon Prize
The annual Edmund N. Bacon Prize + Talk honors one outstanding national figure who has advocated for excellence in urban development, planning, thought, and design through conviction of vision, effective communication, and a commitment to improving their community. This talk is presented along with the awards for the annual Better Philadelphia Challenge. For more information visit: philadelphiacfa.org/programs-and-exhibitions/edmund-n-bacon-prize-lecture.