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Architecture students win Monsters of Design Awards

Monday, April 13, 2015

Two projects done by KU students recently won prizes in the Monsters of Design competition, sponsored by the Young Architects Forum of Kansas City.

All types of projects may be entered into the contest, including architecture, interiors, and product and graphic design. Architectural designs may be built or unbuilt.

Allison Pericich won for a project she calls “Reclaim the Lot” which was done for a an emerging economies design studio taught last fall by Associate Professor Shannon Criss.

Pericich inventoried land use in an urban neighborhood near downtown Kansas City. She identified many underutilized parking lots, and proposed that these could be transformed into parks and squares, helping to revive the surrounding neighborhood.

For her design, she chose a parking lot adjacent to a jazz hall for development in three phases. The first would remove half of the parking enabling the development of a public square. with a new parking garage next to it.

In the second phase, a parking garage would be built, its ground floor activated with a café and retail space. The third phase transitions the parking structure into a high-density residential building.  It would occur as Kansas City’s new streetcar system becomes established and the surrounding neighborhood becomes more vibrant lessening the need for automobiles.  

The other award went to the students who were enrolled in Associate Professor Nils Gore’s design studio last spring. They were responsible for transforming a derelict Airstream trailer into the moCOLAB, a community center on wheels. 

The 1972-vintage Airstream Sovereign Land Yacht was purchased in the fall of 2013, and renovations began in 2014 when students enrolled in a third-year architectural design studio taught by Gore gutted, cleaned and completely renovated the trailer. The moCOLAB made its KU campus debut April 10, complete with new curved plywood paneled walls, handcrafted furniture, lighting and air conditioning, and movable furnishings.

The Monsters of Design award was accepted by Austin Griffis and Jessica Luber.