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The City of the Future: an urban design competition

The Take Back the City coalition has launched a competition open to all architects, planners and urban designers to present their vision for an inclusive and climate-friendly Belfast.

Are you an architect, planner or urban design consultant? The Take Back the City coalition invites you to participate in our design competition for ‘The City of the Future.’ Submit your strategic urban design for an inclusive and sustainable community on the 25-acre former Mackie’s site in Belfast before 30th September 2022. The winning entry will receive a £10,000 prize as well as the opportunity to take their design concepts forward to masterplan stage.

Take Back the City (TBTC) was formed in 2021 to advance the case for building sustainable homes and communities on publicly owned land in Belfast as a way of tackling the housing crisis and climate emergency. Our work, including this competition, is generously funded by the Oak Foundation.

A sapling growing at Mackie's

The coalition is made up of families in housing need supported by experts in housing development, technology, communications, permaculture, housing policy, planning, human rights and equality. We have led a trail-blazing participatory process to identify available public land and develop the principles under which it should be used.

We recently published our ground breaking interactive mapping tool for the city of Belfast, presenting for the first time the complexities of housing need, inequality, deprivation, investment, vacant public land, sectarian divisions and projected climate impacts in one place. Watch the film to see our campaign in action:

There is no such things as impossible! The status quo is not an option if we are to respond to the challenges of our time in a way which promotes peace, equality and sustainability. We believe that Belfast can be transformed into a sustainable city where every child has a home. We want to see bold, optimistic and visually compelling entries, which embody the vision developed by homeless families and experts in consultation with community and government stakeholders. You can find the competition brief with all the relevant information here.

The closing date for all entries is 5pm (GMT) on Friday 30th September 2022.

Interested in taking part?

Given the short timescale remaining this competition is now CLOSED to new entrants.

If you have any questions on the brief, please contact Avril Dennison, Assistant Director: Operations at Participation and the Practice of Rights here.

Take Back the City logo The Take Back the City coalition was formed in 2021 to develop sustainable solutions to Belfast’s housing crisis. We are families in housing need supported by experts in architecture, urban planning, housing policy, technology, communications, permaculture, human rights and equality.
Supported by
Oak Foundation logo PPR logo Queens University Belfast logo Town and Country Planning Association logo
© 2022 TAKE BACK THE CITY COALITION