Taking leave ……. An International Competition

25 January “The City of the Egyptian Dream”

Writing the History of our Future

Poster Taking Leave Competition

          New thought requires taking leave of the old and building anew; hence Akhenaton’s Tel Amarna, or the establishment of Christian Constantinople or the hijra from Mecca to Medina. After the 25 January revolution, it is no longer possible for Egypt to work and grow within the old valley and leave (95%) of its area unutilized. The desert is our Noah’s Ark and it is where we will build a history for our future. Futuristic ideas and developmental initiatives (building civilizations) will not at this stage resolve the issue of Egypt’s future. What is needed is a new generation (builders of civilization) that takes responsibility for the future. This will only happen through education, scientific research, technical knowledge base and new unconventional thought that relies on integration, democracy, dialogue, community participation.
             The Centre for Sustainability and Future Studies of the British University in Egypt, in conjunction with the M. Farid Khamis Foundation for Social Development and in partnership with governmental and non-governmental organizations proposes an international competition on Taking Leave of the Valley. Applying a different methodology will result in an alternative set of questions and answers, the competition documents comprise a comprehensive collection of initiatives for alternative settlements that reflect the goals and spirit of the 25 January Revolution. The aim of the competition is to conceptualize, through scientific research and democratic process, the many beginnings of a livable sustainable urban settlement of the future under the name 25 January; City of the Egyptian Dream. The competition will be organised over two stages:

Stage I:
  1. Planning of a sustainable contemporary city of the future that could be industrial, agricultural, service-based, touristic, or could function as a national capital.
  2. Conceptualisation of the ‘taking leave scenario’ (time frame and responsibilities) as inspired by social reality of the 25 January revolution During the first anniversary of the 25 January Revolution, an international workshop will be held to shortlist qualifying submissions to continue to Stage II. Prizes for creative approaches may be awarded at the Jury’s 10 honorary prizes of LE 5,000 each.

Stage II: 
  1.  Green Architecture applications on the Design of a suitable residential type.
  2. Design of a showcase pilot building that addresses pivotal economic or investment needs.

First Prize LE 100,000
Second Prize LE 75,000
Third Prize LE 50,000
Honorable Mentions LE 20,000

The submission deadline for Stage I is 25/1/2012. The award-giving ceremony with international jury will be held in conjunction with an exhibition and international workshop on the occasion of the 25th of January celebrations. Stage II details will be announced then.

For information, terms and conditions see the competition website:
csfs.bue.edu.eg or contact: csfs2011@bue.edu.eg.

Samples of participant presentations:

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