We’d like to take the opportunity to introduce you to the 3rd prize winners of our Kurgi Observation Tower competition – Yuteng Lin and JJ Zhao from Canada!

Yuteng Lin and JJ Zhao from Canada

Both alumni of the McGill School of Architecture, we are proud members of IBI Group Living+ team in Vancouver, Canada. Our team’s vision is to design environments for people to thrive in that extend beyond the walls of their home. We create neighbourhoods enriched by retail, entertainment, access to public transit and the public realm, and establish connections to the larger community through technology-enabled amenities. From homes to hotels, to senior living, we contribute to design outcomes that lead to a better quality of life for the residents of today’s smart cities.

Brief information about the projects that you/your company have been involved with. For instance, what scale have you focused on/preferred, any significant projects where the company/individuals have been involved?

Both of us have been involved in a wide range of projects in different scales across Canada : from townhomes to residential mid-to-high-rises and to high-density mixed-use developments. Our scopes of work are very diverse, and we are equally interested in all dimensions. Currently, we are also exploring large-scale urban design and interested in how architecture and space can be shaped in a broader context.

What does architecture mean to you and what is the role of an architect in your society?

Architecture is the synthesis of practical design solutions and vigorous imagination endeavours. Architecture is the intricate art of formgiving with consideration of multidimensional values. We believe that, as architects, we’re given the rare privilege and opportunity of shaping the functional and aesthetic value of cities and landmarks worldwide. Architecture should honour and reflect unique communities; looking boldly ahead to the future while responsibly reflecting their histories.

Why do you participate in architecture vision competitions?

Our daily working environment requires us to provide very practical design solutions for clients. Architecture vision competitions give us the opportunity to think outside of the box and stimulate our creativity with diverse ideas and project locations that challenge our comfort zone.

What advice would you give to individuals who struggle to decide whether it would be beneficial for them to participate in architecture vision competitions?

Do it, no matter the phase you are at in your career or life in general, this opportunity to exchange ideas is what's pushing architecture and its community forward. Each design process cycled through is extremely rewarding and contributes to self-discovery as an architectural designer.

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