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          Rising Tides Design Competition
          The San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission (BCDC)
        • Category
        • International
        • Type
        • Open
        • Registration Deadline
        • 06/29/2009
        • Submission Deadline
        • 06/29/2009
        • Open To
        • All
        • Entry Fee
        • US $45 before May 15, $75 after May 15
        • Awards
        • US $25,000 Total
        • Jury
        • Michael Sorkin, Walter Hood, Denise Reed, Marcel Stive and Tracy Metz
        • Contact
        • David Meckel, FAIA
        • Email
        • Competition E-Mail
        • Web Site
        • Competition Web Site
        • Description
        • Throughout the world, estuaries like Chesapeake Bay, Setubal Bay, Puget Sound and San Francisco Bay are not only important to a region's quality of life, but they are national treasures that contribute to the vibrancy of the environment and the global economy.

          Nearly every day, we learn more about sea level rise, one of the most publicized impacts of global warming. In the San Francisco Bay Area, the estimated height of rising tides is well documented. Sea level rise from warming oceans may be 1.4 meters (55 inches) over the next 100 years, or even higher depending upon the rate at which glaciers and other ice sheets on land melt. Individually and collectively, people are seeking solutions to this phenomenon.

          The issue of rising tides is of global importance and both simple and complex interventions will be needed. However, as the water continues to rise, this global issue will certainly become a local issue with site-specific consequences. Therefore, when thinking about ways in which to adapt to sea level rise, the obvious place to start is the place in which we live.

          To grapple with the realities of sea level rise, a new suite of shoreline design concepts is needed. The Rising Tides ideas competition seeks responses to various design challenges, such as: How do we build in an area that is dry now, but that may be wet in the future? How do we retrofit existing shoreline infrastructure such as shipping ports, highways, airports, power plants and wastewater treatment plants? Can we imagine a different shoreline configuration or settlement pattern that allows temporary inundation from extreme storm events? And how do we provide flood protection inland of marshes without drowning the wetland when the water rises?

          BCDC invites you to give shape to these challenges by submitting design ideas that are inspired by the common characteristics of estuaries, some of which are highly urbanized. Some techniques for dealing with sea level rise are fairly obvious. Other ideas, however, are less tested and still other concepts may not yet have been conceived. The best ideas will be products of innovation and creativity, be it by expanding upon traditional design solutions, such as seawalls and levees, or by offering an entirely new perspective. Proposals may involve any type of project within the built and natural environments, at any scale relative to an estuary like the San Francisco Bay. Your idea may address sea level rise for a particular shoreline element or structure, or it may address the larger issues related to a site, a neighborhood, commercial districts, public infrastructure, transportation systems or an entire watershed.

          Design proposals may range from practical and pragmatic to aggressively imaginative and speculative. All entries, however, should solve a meaningful sea level rise problem, while being environmentally smart, simply designed and transferable to other estuaries beyond San Francisco Bay. Integrating “green building” principles to resilient designs adds another layer of opportunity and complexity.

          The Rising Tides ideas competition is open to everyone, including architects, ecologists, coastal engineers, civil engineers, biologists, landscape architects, planners, artists, developers, builders, and even ordinary citizens. All are encouraged to bring forward their vision of a future estuarine shoreline that is applicable to San Francisco Bay and beyond.

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