Finalists in SXSW Eco's Place by Design competition seek to elevate public space through design

Finalists in SXSW Eco's Place by Design competition seek to elevate public space through design

(Courtesy Place by Design/SXSW Eco)
Airbare by Urban Matter Inc. (Courtesy Place by Design/SXSW Eco)

SXSW Eco’s Place by Design (PxD) competition recently announced an ambitious list of finalist projects. Each design represents the competition’s belief in the impact of quality design and the utilization of space to develop the interactive relationship between people and place.


The Swings by Mouna Andraos and Melissa Mongiat (Courtesy Place by Design/SXSW Eco)

“The Place by Design Finalists envision public space as something greater than a backdrop for human activity,” the SXSW Eco website explains. “These projects push everyday places to become an integral part of a community and a force for social, economic and environmental change.”

The finalists fall into five categories—Art + Interaction, Data + Tech, Resilience, Social Impact, and Urban Strategy. Each is composed of a centralized theme that integrates a responsive environment.

One of the projects, presented by Mouna Andraos and Melissa Mongiat, showcases musical swings activated by playground enthusiasts all of ages. When all swings are used, it creates a harmonious tune that promotes community engagement and invites singing swingers everywhere.

Ribbon Gardens presented by Tim Bevins LEED-AP ND; Green Urbanism Program Assocate | Global Green USA  (Courtesy Place by Design/SXSW Eco)

Another project, Ribbon Gardens, aims to address food scarcity in food deserts. Ribbon Gardens, made through a “customized, easy to assemble kit of parts” to create “functional food production areas.”

City of Austin Neighborhood Partnering Program presented by Justin Gobabai, Neighborhood Partnering Program Manager of City | Austin’s Public Works Department (Courtesy Place by Design/SXSW Eco)

“Design profoundly shapes how we interact with and care for the places we inhabit,” the Place by Design competition page states. “Good design fosters vibrant, well-maintained communities, while poor design can lead to fractured urban landscapes that lack a sense of place.” The Place by Design finalists will present their projects at the SXSW Eco on October 5th through the 7th at the Austin Convention Center.

View a full list of finalists on the Place by Design website.