The Competition

The Festival of Ideas for the New City was the first iteration of a new collaborative initiative between scores of downtown organizations, from large universities to arts groups and community organizations, working together to affect change. The Festival aims to demonstrate the power of the creative community to imagine the city of the future and to serve as a platform for artists, architects, designers, and other thought leaders to exchange ideas, propose solutions, create new problems, and invite the public to participate in improving urban life.


The Festival of Ideas for the New City took place during the weekend of May 7-8, 2011, and included panels, roundtables, symposia, and workshops; an innovative outdoor “street fair”; and dozens of projects, performances, and events, opening simultaneously at multiple downtown venues. The Bowery served as the spine of the Festival, with Cooper Union and the New Museum acting as anchors and hubs for conversation, discussion, learning, and action.


For the occasion of the first Festival of Ideas for the New City in New York City, Storefront for Art and Architecture jointly with the New Museum and New York City’s Department of Transportation (NYCDOT) launched the StreetFest competition for the design, management, and construction of temporary outdoor spaces that produce new ways for collective gathering and city engagement.


See the images to the right for a selection of entry images submitted for Streetfest in 2010. These images are part of the Streetfest Online Exhibition launched in conjunction with Ideas City 2013 and click here to view images of submissions for StreetFest 2012.


The winning entry was presented on Saturday, May 7, 2011. Worms, by studios Family and PlayLab, was realized and designated outdoor spaces along the Bowery and the surrounding streets of the New Museum during the Festival. We envision fabricating a minimum of fifteen structures that stretchedapproximately 2,000 square feet.


These temporary outdoor structures accommodated a multiplicity of activities includingvendors, workshop areas, outdoor classrooms, demonstrations, installations, music, and other performances and exhibitions.



The Challenge

Prefabricated tenting structures have proliferated in the last years as the only solution to temporary affordable outdoor shelter. The resulting landscape of street fairs or temporary events throughout cities and neighborhoods has been a spatially, geometrically, chromatically, and materially homogeneous environment that simply enables activities to happen without generating a playful engagement with the city or its citizens.

This competition asks for designs that envision street tents not only as shelters but also as active elements within the collective construction and understanding of the city. StreetFest makes a call to Architects, Artists and Engineers to re-envision the performativity-the material, social, and educational possibilities-of temporary outdoor structures.


The winning entry will have these characteristics:
1. Aspires to reinvent the typical street fair tent
2. Is modular; one unit can become three can become seven, providing scalability and the ability to go from an intimate platform to a larger one
3. Is conscientious of the materials used and their impact on the environment
4. Is easy to produce and install; if time allows, there is opportunity to produce additional structures

The selected project will work closely with the StreetFest Task Force committee and will be commissioned to produce, construct, install, and disassemble the final design.

Site Description and Scope

The competition aims to reinvent a site-less typology with a call for projects able to propose new modes of site engagement without a particular site limit.

During the Festival, and facilitated by street closures TBD [see annex 1], the StreetFest will be roughly located around the New Museum and its surrounding streets. The information provided in the map is for orientation only and is subject to change.

However, it is important to consider the dimension of the streets, sidewalks, fire egress lines, trees, street furniture and lighting, etc.



Registration Deadline>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>January 21, 2010
Deadline to Submit Questions>>>>>>>>>>>> January 24, 2011
Common Answers Publication on Website>>> January 26, 2011
Registration Confirmation E-mails Sent>>>>> January 24, 2011
Competition Submission Deadline>>>>>>>>>February 7-8, 2011
Winner Announcement>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> >>Mid-February, 2011
Design-Management-Construction period>>> Mid-February-May1st
StreetFest Date>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> May 7, 2010




Design Considerations

The design must provide a covered area of 2,000 square feet. The competition asks for an amount of tents that can range from 10 to 20 units. While traditional tents have a clear modulation in relation to street vendors and other functions, the competition is seeking designs that are able to provide for multiple spatial configurations, from freestanding units to large collective areas.


Program: The formal configurations or typologies to be developed can vary in form and size and should be able to accommodate the following programs as well as propose new functions:

– Exhibitors who are likely to present workshops, classrooms, exhibits, and/or performances
– Eating/talking areas related to parked food trucks
– Vendors who will sell products
– Several performances areas


Requirements: Due to the outdoor nature of the project and its situation in the public realm, submissions must comply with the following requirements:

– Comply with the NYC Building Code for its type of structure and shall be prepared for permit applications
– Allow for a fifteen-foot wide fire egress lane on every street and allow clearance for all existing fire hydrants
– Provide shelter from wind and water
– Incorporate flexible design parts for vertical coverage
– Structures must be self-standing without the need of making modifications on the street or sidewalk
– Accommodate electric wiring, lighting, and other amenities
– A thorough understanding of the materials used in the project and their life cycle need to be an integral part of the project
– Assembly, disassembly (two hours or less each), storage, and transport need to be an integral part of the design
– The design and proposed installation methodology of the Structure shall be subject to an engineering review and certification by the engineer who is part of the winning team


Other considerations: Original ideas on new tent uses are encouraged


Submission Requirements

All submission materials must have a Title and include the Identification Number (provided to Entrants via e-mail between January 23-25, 2011).

No names or identifying information should be placed on any document except on the form inside the identification envelope.



Two portrait 34 x 44″ panels mounted on hard board. These will have the project title and identification number on the top right of the front and must contain the necessary drawings for the execution of the project including but not limited to:

1. Plans, sections and details. Recommended scales: 1″=1’0″ , 1/4″=1′-0″, 3/32″=1’0″
2. Two visual representations of the project that convey its use.
3. A structural study
4. A regulations compliance form [each project is responsible for demonstrating a total control and awareness of the rules and regulations that affect the proposal]
5. A production and assembly time schedule
6. A detailed execution budget
7. A 300-word description of the project



A bound  project documentation book of 5 pages minimum and 30 page maxiumum in portrait format 11 x 17″.

The book must contain all the information presented in the panels and plus any additional information necessary to evaluate the project in its full scale and scope. Please include the Title and Identification Number on the cover page.


Identification Envelope

A sealed envelope containing the signed Identification Form and Privacy and Release Statement.

The outside of the envelope should include the Title and Identification Number only.



A cd containing three folders [panels/book/envelope] with digital copies in pdf and jpg format of all documents mentioned above [300 dpi] . All files should be labeled with [identification code_document name_number.file extension], example:

12345_Book.pdf [all pages in one single file]
12345_Book_page1.jpg [each page should have a jpg file]
12345_Identification Form.pdf





1. Each submitting team must have as a team leader an Architect and at least one Artist or one Engineer.

2. Additional team members from other disciplines are encouraged.

3. The team leader must have graduated or have started an independent practice within the last ten years. At least one of the team members is living or practicing within New York City or its boroughs.

4. There is no limit on the number of Submissions a given organization, team, or individual may submit, but each Submission must be registered separately and be accompanied by a unique Identification Number, separate registration fee payment and each submission must meet every Competition requirement.

5. Eligible person(s) or Firm(s) shall go through detailed guidelines and shall need to agree to abide by the conditions mentioned therein before registration. Upon acceptance and after registering such person(s) or Firm(s) shall qualify to enter the competition.

6. To be eligible, each Submission must strictly read and comply with all the imperatives of the StreetFest as given in the Competition Guidelines. In case any entry is found to be noncompliant, it shall be disqualified from entering the competition. In case any Entrant(s) is found to have provided false information before or after registration, they shall be liable to be disqualified.

7. The Architect must be willing to observe and comply with all laws, rules, regulations, requirements, orders, and directions of any governmental authority that may pertain to the Architect’s activities and will require, and will be responsible for such observance and compliance from each agent, employee, contractor, or subcontractor engaged by the Architect in connection with the project.

8. By entering the Competition, any and all entrants, and where applicable, their predecessors, successors, assigns, heirs, officers, directors, attorneys, agents, affiliates, parents, subsidiaries, employees, shareholders, and any other person or entity similarly situated, agree in full to these Terms and Conditions.

9. No Entrant shall receive or be entitled to receive any payment as a result of a submission or for granting the promoters any right here in or associated with the competition except an award pursuant to the rules herein.

10. All registration fees, are non-refundable and nontransferable.


Budget / Prize

The total budget for design, construction, assembly, and disassembly is $20,000.

The total budgeted amount for the project [design, management, permits, production, mounting, and dismounting] is $20,000. Any costs in excess thereof are the sole responsibility of the Architect.

The winner Architect will work with the StreetFest task force committee to realize the design and work with the organizers to obtain all permits and will be responsible for project management with manufacturers/vendors to produce the project.

All other production and fabrication expenses, exceeding $20,000, shall be assumed by the Architect.

Additionally, the selected project will be awarded a design, construction, and managing fee in the amount of $7,500.



All questions should be e-mailed to by January 24, 2011. Relevant questions and answers will be posted on the StreetFest page found on the website on January 26, 2011.



Competitors are required to register their intention to enter. This registration must be received by January 21, 2010 before midnight, by sending the registration form [Annex 3] to, which includes a $50 registration fee payable via PayPal. Projects will not be juried without valid registration. After registration, each Entrant will be provided with a registration confirmation and assigned a unique Identification Code in January 24, 2011.




Competitors must not communicate with the jury about the competition in any way until a public announcement of the winners is made.

No partner, associate, or employee of any jury member may participate in the competition.



The jury is formed by:

Vito Acconci, Principal
Vito Acconci Studio

Cristobal Correa, Associate Principal
Buro Happold Consulting Engineers

Eva Franch i Gilabert, Director
Storefront for Art and Architecture

Tamara Greenfield, Executive Director
Fourth Arts Block

Lisa Phillips, Toby Devan Lewis Director
New Museum

Charles Renfro, Partner
Diller Scofidio + Renfro

Janette Sadik-Kahn, Commissioner
New York City Department of Transportation

The decision of the jury shall be final and binding on all parties, and no disputes shall be entertained.

The jury might declare the competition deserted and reject any and all proposals received in response to this competition.

The jury might waive or modify any irregularities in proposals received or any other aspect of this competition.



Additional Information

The StreetFest Competition is organized by Storefront for Art and Architecture, sponsored by the New Museum, and supported by New York City’s Department of Transportation (NYCDOT).

Copyrights regarding the Projects shall remain the property of the Architect.

The actual structure will become the property of the New Museum and will be utilized by Storefront for Art and Architecture and NYCDOT and other institutions for future events and venues.

Submitted materials shall not be released nor exposed in public, press or other media before the announcement of a winning entry or the cancellation of the competition.

The Architect agrees to permit competition sponsors to use the submitted materials for public posting, publication, or exhibition or for archival, promotional, educational, and such other purposes as such institutions shall determine.

The Jury and/or Storefront for Art and Architecture reserve the right to cancel or suspend the Competition for any reason, including those causes beyond the organizer’s control that could corrupt the administration, security, or proper participation in the Competition.

The organization assumes no responsibility for postal, e-mail, electronic, technical, or natural conditions that prevent the receipt or judging of a competition submission or any part thereof.

The organization reserves the right to amend these Guidelines at any time without notice.

No information contained in submissions shall be deemed confidential and such information may be shared with other governmental entities. Therefore, please do not submit any information that may be deemed proprietary in nature.

Competition sponsors shall not be liable for any costs incurred by any respondent in the preparation, submittal, presentation, or revision of its submission. Competition sponsors shall not be obligated to pay and shall not pay any costs in connection with the preparation of such submissions.



Submissions must be delivered to Storefront for Art and Architecture on February 7 or February 8, 2011 between 11 a.m. and 6 p.m. EST.

Storefront for Art and Architecture
97 Kenmare Street
New York, NY, 10012




The winning entry will be directly contacted in mid-February, 2011, followed by a public announcement.