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AIA Newark & Suburban CANstruction 2013

AIA Newark & Suburban, together with AIA NJ, hosted the 15th Annual New Jersey edition of the CANstruction Design & Build competition November 14th through November 17th at the Livingston Mall, in Livingston, NJ.  This year 35,730 pounds of canned of food and more than $10,000 was donated to the Community Food Bank of New Jersey (CFBNJ).

CANsruction showcased the creativity, the compassion and the creative spirit of architects and designers. The event could not happen without the commitment, inspiration, and funding that the seven teams put forth – they deserve commendation. The following seven NJ firms participated in this year’s competition:

  • DeBiasse & Seminara Architects
  • Gensler Morristown
  • Milrose Consultants
  • Tricarico Architecture & Design
  • LWDMR Architects
  • NK Architects
  • Solutions Architecture

The three distinguished guest judges for this year’s competition each had a connection to the event. Jack Purvis, AIA, President of AIA NJ. Stephen W. Schwartz, AIA, past president of AIA Newark & Suburban Architects and Livingston-based architect, and Tim Vogel, CFR, the CFBNJ Director of Food Sourcing.

With the theme “NJ Shore CAN Rebuild,” this year’s program sought to challenge teams to build shore-themed structures that paid homage to New Jersey’s Sandy hurricane-battered coastline.

The Gensler Morristown team took home two of the event’s awards, “Judge’s Favorite” and “Best Use of Labels” for its 9,966 can “Jersey Shore CAN Roll with It” structure — a giant skee ball replica. NK Architects, also from Morristown, took home the coveted “People’s Choice” award for its “NJ Shore CAN Come to the Rescue” display, which was a life-sized lifeboat model assembled with 9,175 cans, bottles and bags of food.

The “Honorable Mention” award was presented to Debiasse and Seminara Architects, based in Martinsville, N.J., which cleverly presented a beachfront scene with a house on piles titled “Smarter than the Storm.” Solutions Architecture, based in Newark, N.J., was awarded the “Best Meal” honor for its “Building Memories” design, which drew inspiration from the Fun Time amusement pier.  The “Structural Integrity” award was given to Tricarico, a Wayne, N.J.-based architectural firm, for their curvilinear “Back to the Boardwalk #njstrong.”

Milrose Consultants illuminated lighthouse structure titled “Beacon of Light” recreated a very recognizable Long Beach Island icon.  First time CANstruction entrants, LWDMR Architects, “Knock ‘Em Down and Build ‘Em Up” structure replicated another popular boardwalk game. Their structure suffered a partial collapse at 90% completion and  still they were able to recover and “re-canstruct” the full structure within the  12-hour time limit.

Thanks go out to our AIA NS sponsors and the numerous sponsors that donated to the teams and to the food bank. Additionally, Simon Property Group® generously made available its Livingston Mall again as the host venue for the event. Goya Foods also returned as a major sponsor, donating thousands of canned goods and providing discount purchase and free delivery of cans for three of this year’s teams.  In addition to their canned good donation NK Architects and Solutions Architecture donated $3,000 and $2,000 respectively to the food bank.

AIA NS members are encouraged to get involved in CANstruction 2014 next year to keep this impressive program vibrant and moving forward!

Written by: CANstruction 2013 Event Chair, Ronald Weston, AIA


VIEW 2012 Event “Back to School”

It starts with one can, to feed the hungry, to lift the spirit, to change the world. Canstruction is a charity committed to ending hunger, using “one can” as a catalyst for change. Every month, over 500,000 New Jerseyans access hunger reflief programs supported by the Community Food Bank of NJ. New Jersey’s design/build competition puts a visual spotlight on hunger while showcasing the state’s best and brightest designers. Think you have what it takes to design and build a structure entirely out of canned food? Enter today! Get creative and help!

For additional information:

Click HERE for the Community Food Bank.



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