The 2020 NextLandmark International Contest opens today, focusing on the theme of “An educational garden in Fiorano Modenese”.
The ninth edition of the international contest promoted by Floornature, the architecture and design portal published by the Iris Ceramica Group, introduces a new formula: an ideas competition. Entrants – young professionals and new graduates in the disciplines of design, architecture, urban planning and landscape design – are asked to come up with an idea for reorganisation of the outdoor spaces at “Casa Coccapani” kindergarten in Fiorano Modenese (MO).
In 2019, entrants were asked to propose new ways of using public and urban space as an economic and environmental opportunity permitting consolidation of collective identity. This year, the contest asks for new ideas for redesigning outdoor public spaces as a place for growth and learning, establishing a bond between individual, community and natural space and thereby casting down the roots for individual and community development of care and protection of all living creatures.
The site selected for the ideas competition is the outdoor area at “Casa Coccapani” kindergarten in Fiorano Modenese (MO). The building was recently subjected to an earthquake-proofing and renovation project, and landscaping of the outdoor areas represents the ideal completion of the project. A real, concrete problem which young architects and designers are asked to address, proposing ideas that suit the project’s technical specifications and budget, specified in the contest regulations. For example, the projects must not require existing trees to be cut down or make any substantial changes to roadways. Projects must be non-invasive and assign importance to the quality and material properties of surfaces, with flexible, multi-functional configurations. Spaces must encourage inclusiveness, cooperation, hospitality and social cohesion, contributing to the development of a civic sense of community.
For this purpose, the competition announcement attracts attention not only to architectural aspects but to specific qualities and properties of the project, such as: Beauty and simplicity / Physical and mental health / Inclusiveness and accessibility / Sharing, hospitality and diversity / Flexibility and adaptability / Economic feasibility. The contest regulations also identify specific types of indispensable space, such as a “community zone”, a barrier-free area where users can circulate freely, and an ;”outdoor zone” for exploring nature with plant species and varieties appropriate for children, as well as other areas of specific experiential value.
The contest announcement emphasises social responsibility, meaning designing spaces for learning and growth of future generations, for it is a well-known fact that direct experience is the most effective form of learning, and so the quality of spaces in places like this plays a fundamental role in the growth of children, who experience their urban and environmental surroundings in a much more physical way, without the superstructures adults impose on them. As usual, the NextLandmark International Contest is open to young architects and creative artists in the disciplines of architecture and design who graduated from no earlier than 2010; participation is permitted in individual form only. The deadline for submission of entries is 30 May 2020 . A single winner will be selected in the judges’ final, unchallengeable decision, and will receive a scholarship to attend a Master’s Programme in Sustainable Design at SOS - School of Sustainability in Bologna, the school founded by architect Mario Cucinella, including a trip to Bologna, publication of the project on Iris Ceramica Group media and certification as the winner of the 2020 NextLandmark International Contest.