Buildner has announced the results of their Milan Affordable Housing Challenge. The 15th edition of the competition platform’s Affordable Housing Series, the brief called for “a flexible, innovative, pilot-phase concept for affordable housing within and around Milan, Italy.”
The competition had no set site or scale but was required to address the city’s housing crisis in a creative spirit. Among the approaches sought by the jury were projects that “challenge typical ideas of housing, design, and the community at large, while at the same time maintaining a practical element that could potentially see these designs realized.”
The winning schemes are published below:
First Prize and Buildner Student Award: Milano Super Flat by Ziyong Mu, Xuanchang Zhang, and Jinglin Wu (Tokyo Institute of Technology)
Jury comment excerpt: "Milano Super Flat rethinks the development strategy for the courtyards within Milan’s typical residential blocks. Milan’s urban grid has plentiful open spaces at the center of blocks. But these, the proposal claims, are at risk of suffering from detrimental vertical constructions that block light and air from apartments that give onto the courtyards. Further, such constructions remove what was once intended as common spaces for residents. The radical proposal considers building downward, excavating the below-grade level within courtyards across the city, and filling this subterranean space with dense rows of new apartments topped with gardens. Such a solution could revive the city with new shared spaces and offer much-needed additional housing stock."
Second Prize: No(n)-Stop City by Chang Yuan Max Hsu (United States)
Jury comment excerpt: "No(n)-Stop City is a proposal for a ring of housing infrastructure that surrounds central Milan without break, sited along the peripheral boulevards which once were the location of the medieval city’s protective walls. This new loop would consist of three datums: a mass transit route at ground level to connect the various neighborhoods, above which sit three levels of residential program, and finally topped by a continuous public park. The mass transit infrastructure is proposed as the financial stimulant for the project, while the rooftop park provides a green public amenity for the neighborhoods through which the new ‘building’ is constructed."
Third Prize: Re-Park by Ahmed Elkhateb, Mohammed Elkhateb, Omar Adel Elgebely, and Ahmed Negm (Consultant Engineer Bureau, Egypt)
Jury comment excerpt: "Re-Park is a proposal to repurpose parking structures scattered throughout central Milan into affordable housing units. The project intends to retain parking, but make it smarter and more compact through the use of robotic lifts and stacking. Such a strategy could free up underutilized surface area in the city center for housing. The project is a proposition for a new form of multi-use program using existing infrastructure. The goal is, ultimately, to increase density through more efficient planning."
Buildner Sustainability Award: rail community by Zunyi Zhou (China)
Jury comment excerpt: "Rail Community is a proposal for more efficient use of Milan’s abandoned rail cars and railways. It offers a multitude of design options for residential units of various sizes which are considered as modules to be inserted within existing train cars. It is completed by an urban vision for an entirely new form of community with open rooftops and shared open corridors between rail tracks."
A total of 7,000 € in prize money is dispersed among 1st, 2nd, and 3rd prize winners. Learn more about the competition here.
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