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Call for registrations to YAC's Detroit Waterfront District competition

United States Architecture News - Oct 20, 2020 - 17:11   4509 views

Call for registrations to YAC's Detroit Waterfront District competition

Young Architects Competitions (YAC) and Manni Group have launched Detroit Waterfront District competition, inviting creatives to design Detroit's new skyline. 

There will be a total amount of 20.000€ in prize money for the awarded proposals and the jury of the competition gathers outstanding international personalities like Daniel Libeskind - Studio Libeskind, Giulio Rigoni - BIG, Adolfo Suarez - LOMBARDINI 22, Elier Torgow - Sterling Group.


This is a story that few people are happy to tell. It is a story that shining downtown skyscrapers hide. However, the deep wounds on the huge body of Detroit prove it happened and still endures: countless battered dwellings, empty streets and abandoned buildings scar the city.  

It is difficult to tell how “the arsenal of democracy” – Detroit grew to be known as this in the early 1940s- transformed into the largest modern-day ghost city. Yet, history is full of contrasts. The pendulum of time often changes its direction. Time and again, where a void is created an opportunity arises.    

Indeed, over the last years strong winds of change have been whipping the city. They have blown the fog of the past away and dispersed the mist of decay stifling Detroit’s development for decades. As a result, many of the voids of the city – the wounds generated by depopulation and economic crisis- turned into new epicenters of urban regeneration. They became valuable canvas where to paint new masterpieces of contemporary architecture.    

Detroit Waterfront District precisely focuses on the most fascinating canvas of all: the urban void overlooking the river amid downtown skyscrapers. Detroit Waterfront District is the competition promoted by Manni Group in collaboration with Sterling Group to design the future leisure and entertainment heart of the city of Detroit.    

Architects will deal with the area where stood the Joe Louis Arena beside the place where- according to tradition- Detroit’s founding fathers landed. Participants will have the opportunity to design a building complex to redefine the city skyline. They will generate superb architecture masterpieces to become the symbol of the revival of one of the most iconic and controversial cities of the history of the United States of America.        

YAC thanks all the architects who will take part in this challenge.


Daniel Libeskind

Marie Larsen (3XN)

Giulio Rigoni (BIG - Bjarke Ingels Group)

Rodrigo Duque Motta

Marcos Rosello (aLL Design)

Jean Paul Uzabakiriho (Mass Design Group)

Jorge P. Silva (Aires Mateus)

Clive Wilkinson

Adolfo Suárez (Lombardini22)

Enrico Frizzera (Manni Group)

Claudio Chimienti (TATA Steel)

Elie Torgow (Sterling Group)

Michael Guthrie (INFORM studio)


1st Prize: 10.000€  

2nd Prize: 4.000€

3rd  Prize: 2.000€

4 Gold Mentions: 1.000€ each

10 Honorable Mentions

30 Finalists


28/09/2020 “early bird” registrations-  start

25/10/2020 (h 23.59 GMT) “early bird”registrations end

26/10/2020  “standard”registrations-start

22/11/2020 (h 23.59 GMT) “standard” registrations end

23/11/2020 “late” registrations- start

20/12/2020 (h 23.59 GMT) “late” registrations end

23/12/2020 (h 12.00- midday- GMT) Materials submission deadline

Read more about the competition on the competition's website

Top image courtesy of WAC.

> via Young Architects Competitions