GRAPHISOFT 2016 Spring Student Design Competition

Submission: April 30, 2016
Registration: April 30, 2016
Language: English
Location: Philadelphia, USA
Prizes: 1st Prize: $1,500, 2nd Prize: $1,000, 3rd Prize: $500
Type: Architecture Students


Your challenge? Position Philadelphia’s rich history in front of the millions of tourists who visit it annually by using ARCHICAD to design a temporary, mobile visitor center from shipping containers. You can use as many containers as you want. Make them portable, self-contained and interactive. Give the containers a way to respond to the various sites in which it could be situated.


Design a mobile visitor center, using shipping containers. The centers will be transported and set up in various locations around the city, based on a specific event.

Visitor Center Design Criteria:

  • Assemble and disassemble time of 24 hours or less
  • Independent power supply – runs off-grid
  • ADA compliant
  • Conceptual site plan
  • Transportation plan
  • Reception desk
  • Waiting area
  • Display area for event info/maps/brochures, etc.


The Philadelphia Mummers Parade 

One of the longest running traditions nationwide – this parade features unique costumes, music, and pageantry. No matter the weather, every New Year’s Day, crowds line Broad St., from South Philadelphia straight through Center City to take in a spectacle of color, feathers and fun. The climax of the parade takes place at City Hall and the PA Convention Center where the official judging takes place. The event is so popular, it is broadcast on television and streamed over the web.

Dad Vail Regatta at Boathouse Row

Philadelphia takes full advantage of its scenic location along the Schuylkill River by playing host to more regattas and boat races than any other city in the United States. The Aberdeen Dad Vail Regatta is just one of them. This collegiate regatta brings athletes into Philadelphia from more than 125 colleges and universities for two days of rowing competition on the Schuylkill River. Beautiful Fairmount Park, highly regarded as one of the most famous and scenic rowing routes in the world, attracts more than 10,000 competitors and their families each year.

Race Street Pier

Right in the heart of Philadelphia, visitors can find open space to enjoy a picnic lunch or just relax and take in the beautiful Delaware River Waterfront. Active types flock to the Race Street Pier for free sunrise yoga, walking trails and riverside recreation. Located in the shadow of the Benjamin Franklin Bridge, the Pier hosts a variety of entertaining evening events as well. Philadelphia has invested millions to attract tourists to this free public space as part of the city’s revitalization of the Central Delaware Waterfront.


Any undergraduate or graduate student currently enrolled in a US architecture or interior design program at time of entry. All entries must be registered through this competition site to be considered.


  • March 3: Pre Announcement: Sign up for notification when competition goes live
  • March 16: Official announcement/ competition website goes live
  • April 30: Submission deadline – 5 PM ET
  • May 6: Finalists announced
  • May 20: Winner announced

Go to the competition’s website