KINGSTON, Jamaica – Friday 20 July 2018: Less than two months after opening registrations for the Government of Jamaica’s (GOJ) Houses of Parliament Design Competition, the Urban Development Corporation (UDC) is reporting that the application phase of the competition is now closed with a resounding response from over 200 architects in Jamaica and the diaspora.
A total of 37 teams have registered to vie for the top spot in the historical competition – well ahead of the original target of 25 teams. With team structures varying from students to very experienced architects, 70 percent of the registrants are said to be Jamaicans residing in Jamaica while the remaining 30 percent are from the diaspora.
Dr. Damian Graham, General Manager of the UDC said “We are pleased with the overwhelming response that the competition has received, which is a testament to the passion and pride of our people who want to be a part of something historic for Jamaica and something that matters to all Jamaicans.” .
The Competition, which runs from May 2018 to February 2019, invited qualified and eligible Jamaican architects living in Jamaica and the diaspora, who are registered in Jamaica, to submit their best architectural representation of what the new Houses of Parliament Complex should look like. The concept, as outlined in the competition design brief, includes a parliament complex to be located within the confines of the National Heroes Park nestled amongst passive recreational spaces, gardens and green areas, thereby requiring the entire multi-purpose site to operate as a cohesive cultural and heritage environment.
Meanwhile, Gordon Gill, Competition Patron said; “All across Jamaica and in the diaspora, the region is filled with talented, qualified architects and we are excited and eager to see the creative ideas that will come out of this historic competition. Importantly, I’m looking forward to working with each of the teams and providing the necessary guidance to help them put their best and most unique design forward.”
To ensure a bias-free judging process, all entrants will remain anonymous to the judges until they have selected the top five teams who will move on to stage two. Leading up to that period, the teams are expected to conduct in-depth research to help them present their best and most accurate designs. Submissions for designs open on 20th July 2018, closing on 17th September at 2pm.
Registered teams have also been receiving guidance and support from the UDC in the form of guided tours of the National Heroes Park and Gordon House and a conference that was held at the offices of the UDC, where the technical committee provided answers to questions about the competition. The teams have the opportunity to access a repository of questions with answers via the dedicated website that the registrants can access at any time.
Announcement of the top five teams who will advance to stage two of the competition will take place in October 2018, with each of the finalists being awarded J$2 million. Stage two of the competition will see teams working with a lead architect, who is registered and licenced with the Jamaican Institute of Architects, to prepare and deliver their fully-developed design plans and models again following the guidelines laid out in the competition design brief.
The first, second and third place winners will be announced in February 2019 at an awards ceremony, where they will be awarded with additional cash prizes of JA$5 million, J$4 million and J$2 million respectively.
As the project managers of the competition process, the UDC will continue to update the general public via community fora, social media and its website, to ensure all Jamaicans are fully aware and engaged throughout this historical journey to design our purpose-built parliament complex.
The construction of the Houses of Parliament is envisoned to be a key step in the plan to re-develop Downtown Kington. The vision for the wider project includes the construction of a Government Oval Campus to fully transform the National Heroes Park and Downtown into a global iconic destination for locals and visitors alike. The design competition marks the start of a renewal process led by the UDC with a vision to create new, low cost housing for residents, create better environs for businesses and provide improved security for all; ultimately contributing to the success of the Economic Growth Council targets for Jamaica.
For further information, please contact:
The Corporate Relations and Marketing Department
Urban Development Corporation
12 Ocean Boulevard
Tel 🙁 876) 656-8031
Mobile: (876) 410-6411