In autumn 2014 Linnalabor/ Estonian Urban Lab organized the first architectural competition for pupils in Estonia. The competition focused on their dream school buildings. In 2015 we stepped out and looked for a broader vision about pupils´ school grounds. From there we moved on to the dream streets and as a continuation we dared to give them an assignment to dream about public space – city square in the heart of Estonia – Paide. As the competition was very successful we have decided to move on with site-based competitions. So last year we selected a river side area in Tartu and this time we are expecting them to give ideas for Linnahall – an iconic building on the seaside with no certain future.
Students from 5th to 12th grade all over Estonia are welcome to participate in the competition. They can do it at school together with the teacher or by themselves independently. Each year participants are expected to send up to 4 drawings and a short essay about their dream space. The competition takes place for 3 months. All entries are then evaluated by a professional jury, who picks out the best ideas for the exhibition.
The competition is a great opportunity to find out how young people see the space around them and what are their desires. In recent years we have been targeting a certain place so that their ideas could be carried out to improve local environment and community. We hope that the competition brings awareness to planners, architects, urbanists and property owners that kids have an important role in designing the urban space and they should not be discarded.
Linnalabor/ Estonian Urban Lab is a competence centre of urban thought and action, founded in 2006. All activities are focused on sustainable development and better quality of living environment in urban spaces. Linnalabor aims to improve the culture of urban life and encourages value-based urban politics.