RIBA Competitions are delighted to announce the launch of a new international ideas competition which asks competitors to consider new, aesthetically pleasing designs for the gantry and cantilever structures on the UK rail network which could play a part in the way Britain’s railway implement future electrification schemes.
The rail industry’s Enabling Innovation Team (EIT), which forms part of the Future Railway programme, are the competition promoters in conjunction with HS2, and the competition itself is funded by Department for Transport.
The competition will follow the Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI) process (see http://www.innovateuk.org/sbri for more information) and development funding will be available for shortlisted designers.
The competition is open internationally to architects, engineers and designers. Team and multi-disciplinary entries are encouraged.
The Judging Panel includes Martin Knight of Knight Architects as the RIBA Adviser and Mark Whitby, Davies Maguire + Whitby, Structural Engineer.
Concept designs submitted digitally are required for the initial application stage with up to 10 entries shortlisted. Shortlisted designers will then proceed to the first stage of the SBRI programme and have up to £15,000 each available to fund the next stage of development of their scheme which will include producing a scale model of their design.
David Clarke, Director of EIT said: ‘I’m delighted to be working with HS2 and RIBA on this exciting competition. HS2 and increased electrification both support rail’s need to efficiently accommodate more capacity. This is an opportune moment, ahead of HS2 being physically built, to look at the feasibility of improving the aesthetics of overhead line electrification when creating new infrastructure.’
Technical Director of HS2 Ltd, Professor Andrew McNaughton, said “the new North-South railway is being developed to contribute to the nation’s prosperity for two centuries. We want it to capture the very best of design so that it works brilliantly and looks as good as possible too. This is the essence of good design.”
For further details and to enter please visit the competition website at: www.ribacompetitions.com/ols. The closing date for design submissions is 29 January 2014.