Flat Lot Competition: Reimagining the Parking Lot

June 14, 2013

First Street Lofts, 460 S. Saginaw St., Flint, MI

On Friday, June 14, Flint Public Art Project (FPAP) and the Flint Chapter of the American Institute of Architects opened an exhibit of the Flat Lot Competition to design and build a temporary structure reimagining the central surface parking lot in downtown Flint. The exhibit, which will be held on the ground floor of the First Street Lofts at 460 S. Saginaw Street from 6 – 9 pm, will feature 57 projects selected by a distinguished jury out of more than 220 entries from 35 countries worldwide as beautiful, innovative examples of contemporary art and design that reflect on Flint and the Flat Lot site in engaging and thoughtful ways.

Flint Public Art Project and AIA-Flint jointly launched the international design competition last November to support the many public programs that help define social and cultural life in Flint, and create new opportunities for diverse gatherings downtown. Entrants were required to provide seating, shade, cooling, and other amenities that would make the Flat Lot a more inviting place for community and citywide events.

The winning entry, Mark’s House by the design firm Two Islands (London), envisions a Tudor-style house perched atop a pedestal, covered in reflective material – a “floating house” that becomes a dramatic symbol of Flint’s rebirth. Mark’s House, which is currently being assembled off site, will be unveiled on July 12 and will remain open through the end of September

Also featured in the exhibit are three projects receiving Honorable Mention from the jury:

· Stage a Lot by ksestudio, Sofia Krimizi and Kyriakos Kyriakou (Brooklyn, NY and Athens, Greece) is an origami-like tensile structure that employs a system of ropes and pulleys, folding up to provide shade, a stage, and a screen during events and then collapsing back into a cube at rest.

· Building Bodies for Work by Wes Janz, Tim Gray, and Andrea Swartz of Ball State University (Muncie, IN) engages the problem of vacancy by assembling reclaimed materials from deconstructed houses and using them to train young residents to build an improvised structure in the lot.

· AC.H2O by Michael Ting of University of Calgary (Calgary, Alberta, Canada) creates a swooping overhead canopy that uses plastic trays and sponges to capture rainwater and provide shade, cooling the area during summer events.

Other finalists include Knot Lot by Shepley Bulfinch (Susannah Cramer-Greenbaum, Aris Garrison, Thaddeus Jusczyk, and Ming Yan) (Newburyport, MA), a knotted shade canopy with colorful exercise balls, and Light Park by Samuel Biroscak and Renee Reder of Rice University (Houston, TX), a canopy of steel cables installed with LED lights suspended in tin cans. All 55 of the jury’s first-round selections will be viewable in a slide show and online at flatlot.org. The exhibit will remain open until July 12 by appointment only.

To view the jury selections, semi-finalists, and finalists.

For guidelines and background information.


Jurors: Reed Kroloff, director, Cranbrook Academy of Art; Pedro Gadanho, curator of contemporary architecture, MOMA; John Gazall, Gazall Lewis & Associates Architects; John Henry, director, Flint Institute of Arts; Monica Ponce de Leon, dean, University of Michigan Taubman College of Architecture; Shannon Easter White, FUNchitecture; Stephen Zacks, executive director, Flint Public Art Project.


Marks House – Two Islands (Cesc Massanas, Tomas Selva, William Villalobos)
London, England


Stage a lot (Honorable Mention) – ksestudio (Sofia Krimizi, Kyriakos Kyriakou),
Brooklyn, NY and Athens, Greece

Building Bodies for Work (Honorable Mention) – Wes Janz, Tim Gray, and Andrea Swartz, Ball State University
Muncie, IN

AC.H2O (Honorable Mention) – Michael Ting, University of Calgary,
Calgary, Alberta, Canada

Knot Lot – Shepley Bulfinch (Susannah Cramer-Greenbaum, Aris Garrison, Thaddeus Jusczyk, and Ming Yan)
Boston, MA

Light Park – Samuel Biroscak and Renee Reder
Houston, TX


Archipelago – PARK (Thomas Bojstrup and Rasmus Lassen)

Elevated Carriage – Heather McArthur, Angela Carpenter
Fayetteville, AK

Flat Lot Fanfare – Sophia Vincent-Guy and Ori Guy
Brooklyn, NY

Flint Convertible – David Judelson, with Rei Chiang, Lester Li, and Jorge Plazas
Brooklyn, NY

Float – Amir Kripper, Chris Li – Kripper Architecture Studio, Inc.
Boston, MA

Murphy Monsters – Cosmo Design Factory (Mark Robert Rowntree, Nicholas Julius Krause, Julia Louise Sedlock)
Hillsdale, NY

OBLAKA Pavilion – MOBO Architects (Anna Kulik + Giorgia Badalacchi)
London, England

palLOT – MiMa (Kayla Lim, Elizabeth Yarina)
Cambridge, MA

pictures – Rossetti (Keith Marks, Tony Reiner, Pierre Roberson, Tomm Williams)
Southfield, MI

Tensile Cloud – Bill Bodell, Kesra Mansuri, Dimitri Polychronopoulos, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Faculty Advisors: Hugh Swiatek, Brian Vesely,
Urbana, IL

The Big Top – Synecdoche (Lisa Sauvé, Adam Smith)
Ann Arbor, MI

The Lawn – Taking Back the Flat Lot – ATLAS Lab (Kimberly Garza, Andrew tenBrink)
Brooklyn, NY

The Noodle – Johanna Reed, Laura Bryant, Noah Halbach
Austin, TX

UP – Ramboll (Eddie Jump)
London, England

Jury Review

100 Days of Summer – Jason Sedar
Alberta, Canada

+5 – Jeisler Salunga
Grayslake, IL

Air Canopy – Kang Wook Jung
Oak Park, IL

Apomixis Pavilion – Weetu (Carly Cannell, Kevin Estrada, Helen Schneider, Olga Bukur)
New York, NY

Assembly Line – Alfredo Pimentel, Harvard Graduate School of Design
Cambridge, MA

BACKYARD – Mu Continent
Jackson Heights, NY

Catalytic Convertible – Jordan Gatewood
St. Louis, MO

ChillOut – Liyan Wong, University of Calgary
Calgary, Alberta, Canada

Collage – Samoo Architecture (Robert Condon, San Won Lee, Harry Park, David Ettinger, Naomi Ocko, Jeff Schmidt)
New York, NY

Curated Erosion – Adam Donner
Lincoln, NE

Ebb and Flow – Courtney Clark, University of Calgary
Calgary, Alberta, Canada

Edenilium – A plus architects & construction, Kanaporn Suwanaparata
London, UK

FABRICATED ABSTRACTION – Kristin Ross, Danielle Whitley
Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Flat Box – B15A architettura, Andrea Desideri
Rome, Italy

Flat Folded – Angela Gee
Seattle, WA

Flat Lot – 汤 斗斗

Flat Lot Eye – Tian Ren
Cambridge, MA

Flint Thicket – Bojana Djukanovic, Peter Eichberger, Tianyu Zhang, Gaelan Finney-Day
Urbana, IL

FLoAT – MWA Architects
Portland, OR

Gravitation – Momocha Phurailatpam, Meghan Plichta
Boardman, OH

Inflatable Canopy – An Nguyen, Jordan Overton
San Antonio, TX

Light Transformation – Kane Toler and Ben Linthicum, The University of Texas at San Antonio; Academic Advisor: Ian Caine
San Antonio, TX

Little Dipper – Michael T Kudo Jr., Illinois Institute of Technology; Studio Professor: T. Joseph Surjan
Chicago, IL

Melbourne – Gin Architects, Fei Chau
Springvale South, Victoria, Australia

Movable Box in a Box – Jun Sung Hyun, Seoul, South Korea
Seoul, South Korea

Petal – Kimberly Daughtery, Nathan Powers
North Tonawanda, NY

reforestFLINT – Thomas Adduci
Palos Heights, IL

Shadowbox – Shannon Bronson, Arianne Gelardin
San Francisco, CA

Sharp – Jeyun Do, Yoojin Hwang, Dukyoung Lee
Columbus, OH

Synthetic Meadow – Robert Booth
Saint Louis, MO

TemporarilyEnactedDesign3 – Frederika Eilers, Dino Giacana Tadiar, Ryan Dougherty, Andrew Cunneen, Natalie Cunneen, Cara Marie Coughlin
West Henrietta, NY

Tumbler – Shaden Bolbol, Illinois Institute of Technology; Studio Professor: T. Joseph Surjan
Chicago, IL

The Doublet – Michaela Gordon, Illinois Institute of Technology; Studio Professor: T. Joseph Surjan
Chicago, IL

The Strand – Samuel Pitnick
Los Angeles, CA

URBAN BOX – Carlos Fernandes
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Urban Candy – Yu-Ngok Lo, Tingwei Xu
Culver City, CA

WIRE – Minas Konstantinou, Ioannis Oikonomou, Fotis Sagonas
New York, NY