Buffalo Architecture Foundation 2017 Little Free Library(R) Design Competition

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Buffalo Architecture Foundation 2017 Little Free Library(R) Design Competition

September 1, 2017


This is an Open, Two-stage, Design Competition to design, construct, and install a contemporary book shelter in underprivileged neighborhoods in Buffalo, NY.

The Little Free Libraries® movement places small-scale book shelters in neighborhoods and is based on the premise of “take a book, leave a book.”  Established in 2009, there are now over 50,000 Little Free Libraries® in communities worldwide.  Initially crafted to resemble miniature one-room schoolhouses mounted on a pole, these libraries have become unique structures, designed and constructed in a wide range of styles, often utilizing recycled, reclaimed, or salvaged materials.

Architects, designers, sculptors, carpenters, students, etc. interested in rethinking and fabricating a library as part of this project are invited to submit their qualifications and describe their interest in the project.  A conceptual design and brief narrative description of how your concept addresses the points presented in the Competition Brief must accompany each application. Multiple designs concepts are allowed and will require multiple entries.  Each entry should speak to the goals of the Literacy–friendly neighborhood in an urban setting while simultaneously addressing the basic demands of an outdoor enclosure and providing a form that breaks the mold of what has been deemed typical for a Little Free Library.  Creative and innovative designs are not just encouraged, they’re a must!

A jury will select up to ten entrants to design and fabricate a library, hosted on public property or in the domain of a partnering community organization. Once installed, all libraries will be stocked by the Buffalo and Erie County Public Library system.

Competition Opens:  June 5, 2017
Submissions Due:  September 1, 2017
Winners Notified:  October 1, 2017
Design Duration (3 months):  October 2017 thru December 2018
Construction Duration (4 months):  January 2017 thru April 2018
Installation:  Any time after completion but no later than May 1, 2018
Ribbon Cutting:  Late May/early June 2018

For full contest rules, more information, eligibility and submission requirements, and selection criteria, please download a copy of the Competition Brief.  An entry form for HARD COPY SUBMISSIONS ONLY is included in the packet, but all participants are encouraged to use the Online Entry Form (available soon).


September 1, 2017
Event Category:


Buffalo Architecture Foundation
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