rise in the city: call for architecture mentors

rise in the city is a unique international architecture competition for students and recent graduates worldwide. The challenge is to design affordable and sustainable housing solutions for Africa’s growing population.

We invite all innovative problem solvers in the built environment to design a low-income housing prototype in an effort to curb Lesotho’s housing problem in an environment challenged by:  increased urban migration, climate change and scarcity of resources.

How it works

Lesotho is a lower middle income country completely surrounded by South Africa. For this competition, its capital city, Maseru is being split into 100 virtual blocks. Virtual residency is being offered for 3 entities per block:

Phase One
100 Leading architecture and design firms are invited to take up virtual residence of one of the blocks for free.

In return, they mentor and critique the student competition entry who will also take up virtual residency of the same block. AND offer an architectural experience to the sponsor of their block.  This architectural experience can be a networking lunch with the senior design team or a tour of a building they have designed if one is located close to their office.

Phase Two
100 companies
 keen to gain a one-on-one networking opportunity, choose a Maseru block to sponsor for only $1,200 and get to enjoy the experience with the resident architecture firm in their block.

Phase Three
100 students and recent architecture graduates
 are invited to enter the architecture competition and design an affordable  residential house for low income families in an urban setting for Maseru.

A high profile jury will shortlist the best 10 entries that will be exhibited at various events internationally. There will be one International winner and one winner from Lesotho who will be announced at the end of January 2019.

100% of proceeds goes directly towards the project – a design & build training program for Lesotho unemployed youth who are constructing a residential center and entrepreneurship hub for vulnerable adolescents. If enough additional funding is raised from the competition, we will then build the prototype, in collaboration with the Ministry of Local Government, so that people in Lesotho can see the design, get inspired and adapt to build houses that are equally as sustainable and made from locally sourced materials.

By getting involved with rise in the city, either by mentoring a student competition entry, sponsoring one of the city blocks or entering the competition, you will help give the people of Lesotho the opportunity to better their lives for themselves.