Shelter International Architectural Design Competition 2016

Submission: October 20 , 2016
Registration: October 20, 2016
Language: English, Japanese
Location: Concept
Prizes: 1st Prize: ¥2,000,000, 2nd Prize: ¥500,000, x3 3rd Prize : ¥100,000
Type: Student Competition & Young Architects


Many buildings in America, Canada and Europe, keep high value for many years. And, the longer a building stands the more its owners’ attachment to it grows, and the more the building become an essential part of its townscape. Japan has many historical timber buildings which show their traditional beauty to each new generation. It is well-known that timber buildings have advantages in terms of the natural environment and their user’s feeling of well-being.

The myth that timber buildings are weak against fire and earthquake has been overturned, as new technologies have significantly improved the material’s stability and proof against fire. This has made possible the building of large-scale timber structures in city centers, where only fire-proof buildings are allowed – making ‘the City of Timber’ a possibility. The Shelter Corporation imagines a world of urban ‘forests’ ? cities formed of timber-framed buildings. In many places, this dream is becoming real. Our aim overlaps with the peoples’ recognition that our global environment must be sustainable. This issue is now very apparent, and will become increasingly important during this century.

Of course, sustainable buildings constructed in wood must function well and have the highest quality of design. The world awaits the new generation of young, talented architects who can create such buildings.

So, we invite ambitious architectural students from all over the world to join this student ideas competition. At the final jury, the short-listed students will have the opportunity to discuss their designs and receive the critique of the jury ? all of whom are world class architects – and be encouraged in a warm and supportive atmosphere. It is our aim that this competition will be a gateway to success in the architectural profession, and that the young student entrants will grow to become important architects. The results of the competition will be published in a variety of media, as part our mission to promote the improvement of our natural and built environments, all over the world.

Our aim is that ‘The Shelter Design Competition for Students of Architecture’ will be recognized as the most important architectural competition of its type in the world, and a gateway for young architects students to become World-Class Architects.


The First Prize (1Award): ¥2,000,000 and Certificate of Merit
The Second Prize (1Award): ¥500,000 and Certificate of Merit
The Third Prize (3Award): ¥100,000 and Certificate of Merit
Commendations (2Award): Certificates of Merit and prize gift


  1. International Entries are welcomed!
  2. Applicants must be under-graduate or post-graduate students at universities or at tertiary institutions (on 17 December 2016 ).
    Tertiary institutions include: junior colleges, colleges of technology, and other relevant vocational schools.
  3. If selected at the initial private jury, applicant must be available to participate in an open presentation (the final jury) to be held in Tokyo on 17 December 2016 (Saturday).

※Participants at the open-jury presentation must prepare one A1 sheet presentation board.
※Transportation and accommodation costs will be paid for one person per entry.


  • Print out the reply email that you receive from the competition office, and glue it to the back of your submission, in the bottom right-hand corner. Write your entry number on the front side of your submission, in the top right-hand corner.
    → Diagram showing how to affix entry form and entry number to submission.
  • One A2 sized sheet of paper (594mm×420mm), portrait or landscape. (Please do not mount on rigid panel.)
  • Explanatory texts should be included on the sheet, and can be in Japanese or in English. The types of illustrations and the scale of drawings are to be decided by the entrants. Submitted work must be original, and must not have been published previously.

※We require that all submissions by physical, and sent to us by mail or courier.
※We do not accept digital submissions sent by email.
※Submissions can be sent rolled, but must not be folded.
※Submissions will not be returned.

Works must be received at Shelter Design Competition Office no later than 20 October.
※Due to the large number of applicants, we are unable to individually notify each applicant that we have received their submission.
※Confirmation of receipt and the required time for delivery is the responsibility of the individual applicant.

Go to the competition’s website