DISTANCING – Housing Block

Architecture Competition

DISTANCING – Housing Block

©Non Architecture


1 – 17 May 2020 -Special registration period (40 €) (30€).

18 May – 14 June – Early registration period (55 €).

15 June – 18 July – Regular registration period (70 €).

19 July – 16 August – Late registration period (85 €).

17 – 29 August – Last-minute registration (100 €).

17 August – Submission opens on our website.

29 August – 23.59 PM – Submission closes.

21 – 27 September – Winner announcement.

The timing always refers to Central European Time (CET)


Our world is changing fast, while ambitions and challenges match in importance. In this context, design can play a huge role. How do we imagine the world to be? What range of possibilities we haven’t discovered yet? What’s a Non-Architecture for a World in crisis? In 2020 we started the second phase of competitions to address the issues of tomorrow.

In line with our style we propose 9+1 themes – ten critical topics to work on, but this time they come with a framework to make sure that each theme is explored from different design angles. Rather than a program, a research ecosystem composed of various competitions running in parallel and exploring the same theme from different perspectives.

Our exploration journey will start from a theme zero, a special step in our research program: Pandemic Society.


This competition calls for alternative housing models to disrupt the real estate market in a scenario of prolonged social distancing. We ask for a creative approach to architectural design, departing from a given users, program and extension.

Social Distancing Housing Block is part of a Competition series, developed to imagine new dwelling models through a variety of creative architectural designs and feasible innovation. Considering the limits of the current housing market, what could be the domestic architecture of the future?

According to the United Nations, the world population is expected to grow by almost 25% in the coming thirty years. Such growth will most likely occur in urban areas, where the housing shortage is already becoming an urgent issue. Additionally, a large part of existing and future buildings will be destined for residential use, leaving a huge impact on the way people live, experience, and affect cities. In this context housing models have been frozen into standardized solutions that leave little or no room for innovation. Such solutions are often perpetrated as a convention, missing a wide range of unexplored opportunities.

The COVID-19 outbreak showed how our way of living can quickly change, while dwellings suddenly became the main stage for this transformation. Imagining a society where social distancing is the new normality, how should housing models change? How can we introduce a valuable change in the established model, to disrupt the real estate market and benefit dwellers, the environment, and the city?

Social Distancing Housing Block aims to answer these questions.


The jury members are the following:

Ahmed Belkhodja – Partners at Fala Atelier

Filipe Magalhães – Partners at Fala Atelier

Ana Luisa Soares – Partners at Fala Atelier

Aleksander G. Kongshaug – Architect & Researcher at GXN

Laurent Rosset – Architect at 3XN


Non Architecture Competitions will award two winners, selected by the jurors individually, and 6 honorable mentions.

WINNERS (2 Prizes)

1.000 euros worth in gift cards from one of the major online shops chosen by the winner.

Publication in the Non Architecture Competitions book and website.

Reviews in digital magazines and several architecture blogs.


Publication in the Non Architecture Competitions book and website.

Reviews in digital magazines and several architecture blogs.

FINALISTS (42 Prizes)

Publication in the Non Architecture Competitions Journal.


The organization might establish additional special prizes and awards during the competition development and in the evaluation phase.

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