“Shore to Core” a new design competition by Van Alen Institute and West Palm Beach

Van Alen Institute and the West Palm Beach Community Redevelopment Agency today launch Shore to Core, comprising both a design competition and a research competition to reimagine the West Palm Beach downtown and to better understand individuals’ relationships to the built environment.

Shore to Core_07Shore to Core asks: How can we recreate an urban core so its design is intelligent, flexible, and responsive to the needs of residents and visitors? A jury will select two finalist multidisciplinary design teams to envision the future of the urban core for waterfront cities by developing a design framework for implementation for West Palm Beach.

The winning design team will work with West Palm Beach Community Redevelopment Agency to implement the first phase of their proposal. Design teams must include at least one designer (an architect, landscape architect, urban designer, and/or planner), and are encouraged to include members with expertise in economic development, environmental psychology, resiliency, placemaking, and the social sciences.

This design project aims to address the needs of the community, to strengthen resiliency, build out the economy, and improve individuals’ wellbeing through the city’s design. West Palm Beach has become a magnet for young professionals, and black and Hispanic residents account for roughly 50% of the population. The local populations can both support and benefit from a thoughtful coast and urban core.

Shore to Core_13“Each of us is impacted by the cities we live in, yet we do not yet fully understand how,” Van Alen Institute Executive Director David van der Leer said. “In this design and research competition, teams will not only develop designs for a new urban core, but also innovative models to measure and analyze the influence of those designs on people.”


“This competition is a remarkable opportunity to consider ways to make our city’s center more dynamic, expanding our ideas for the future of West Palm Beach,” said Jeri Muoio, Mayor of the City of West Palm Beach.

In early September, a distinguished jury will select two finalist design teams that will each receive a $45,000 stipend, and one research team that will receive a $40,000 stipend. All three teams will be asked to develop their original proposals over a three-month period. The final design proposals and research outcomes will be displayed in an exhibition in 2017.


Van Alen Institute will accept proposals beginning today, July 12. The deadline for registration and electronic submission of the request for concepts is 11:59 p.m. EDT on August 21, 2016 at the competition website. Teams are encouraged (but not required) to pre-register their interest by 11:59 p.m. EDT on July 27, 2016 to receive project updates.

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