Public Age Open Call

26 Oct 2016

Public Age is an open call for architect-led multidisciplinary teams to explore creatively how public space is, could be and should be designed with older people in mind. This call out is commissioned by the dlrCountyCouncil/HSE Arts and Health Partnership, with additional grant-aid support from the Arts Council, and run by the Irish Architecture Foundation.

Public Age will see the winning team collaboratively engage with a group of older people from Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County in order to develop a public outcome, installation, temporary intervention or happening in the County in 2017. The project will reveal the importance well designed public space to the health, wellbeing and positive ageing. The project outcome will also encourage and empower people and communities of all ages to engage in a creative way with the issues explored. We wish for teams of architects, artists, designers, care workers, social scientists and others to reflect on how our public spaces serve our older communities. We want these teams to work with older communities to highlight, and perhaps even solve, some of the challenges they face in our urban and rural environments through an architectural outcome.

The aim of this project is to reveal the positive impact that considered architecture and design of public space can have on older people. In particular, Public Age will show the impact architecture, design and the arts can have for older people with regard to:

-Health and wellbeing
-Positive ageing
-Continuing to lead active and independent lives
-Empowering people and communities

As part of Public Age dlr Arts Office will invite older people from around Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County to become involved in the project. The winning team will work with this group in order to establish and discuss a key issue (or key issues) that the project will address, with further consultation influencing the project’s outcome, be that an exhibition, installation, event or intervention in Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown’s public spaces in 201 7.

Teams are invited to apply with an indication of how they would engage in a creative, collaborative process with a group of older people and what issues, if any, they wish to focus their research and development on.  Teams will also propose a creative outcome for the project, although it is important to understand that this outcome may change over the course of the process of collaboration with the project’s participants.

Criteria for Assessment –

Rather than selecting the winning team based just on the proposed outcome/s, we will also select the winning team based on the expertise within the team, the approach that would be used to develop the project in collaboration with the group, and evidence in the application of an interest in and sensitivity to the challenges faced by older people when using public space in Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County. The marks will be allocated as follows:

The winning team will be a multi-disciplinary team which includes an architect or architectural graduate. We encourage the team to also include a broad mix of professional backgrounds and skillsets that may include, but not be limited to, designers, artists, geographers, social scientists, social workers, community workers, urban planners and so on. The application form must contain a brief biography of all team members (all team members must be confirmed at the time of application) as well as a maximum of five examples of projects or research undertaken by one or more team members relating to consultative processes, design for older people, promotion of health and wellbeing, community-led design, urban realm projects or engaging temporary interventions. Lastly, a member of the team must be able to provide Public Liability insurance indemnifying the Council against all claims to the limit of €6.5 million and Employer’s Liability to the value of €13 million as required.

Proposed outcome
The winning team will propose an installation, temporary intervention, exhibition or happening to occur in Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County in 201 7. This outcome will have been developed in collaboration with a group of older people in the area and will in some way explore or elucidate the challenges and opportunities presented to older people in public space. This outcome may be speculative, discursive, or may even go some way towards improving the experiences of older people in our public spaces and will demonstrate the role arts and architecture can play in the improved health and wellbeing of older people and positive ageing. It should be understood that the proposed outcome may develop over the course of the project, given the project’s highly collaborative nature.

The budget for this project is €20,000, inclusive of the collaborative aspect of the project, research, development and delivery of the outcome, VAT and any other expenses. The winning team will present a well thought-out budget reflective of all of these costs and showing that the resources allocated to this project will be used to their maximum potential, while also being realistic and achievable.

Methodology and timeline
Rather than just propose a pre-determined outcome, the winning team will also describe their experience of or interest in running, learning from and creating work inspired by a collaborative process. They will explain the approach they will take in order to develop the project and will demonstrate that they will be flexible in their approach and responsive to the needs of the project’s participants. They will explain how they will develop the project over a planned period of time, lasting up to nine months (but it can be shorter than that).

Demonstrable interest in architecture with regard to health, wellbeing and positive ageing
Ireland’s population is a rapidly ageing one, and Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown’s population is one of the fastest ageing in the country. The winning team will demonstrate an interest in and sensitivity to the challenges and opportunities presented to older people in our public spaces, an awareness of architecture’s impact on older communities and an enthusiasm for encouraging creativity in older people.

This is an open call with submissions to be made to the Irish Architecture Foundation, by post or email, on or before 2 December 201 6. A jury of five will select the winning team. It is anticipated that this will be a one-stage competition, but the Irish Architecture Foundation reserve the right to shortlist and interview teams should the jury feel it is needed. Teams apply by completing and returning the competition application form, which must contain short biographies of all confirmed team members, a maximum of five examples of previous work or research related to the project and brief answers to a number of questions related to Public Age.

Submissions should be sent by email or post (five hard copies) to:
Public Age
Irish Architecture Foundation
15 Bachelor’s Walk
Dublin 1

Competition timeline:
24 October 2016: call opens
23 November: deadline for questions
25 November: answers to questions made publicly available
2 December: deadline for submissions
8 December: Jury meets
9 December: winning team contacted
w/c 12 December: contracts signed, public announcement
January 2017: collaboration with group begins
January-October 2017: development and outcome of project (duration to be decided by the
winning team) Competition jury

The competition jury will consist of:
Andreé Dargan, dlr County Architect
Máire Davey, dlr Assistant Arts Officer
Seán Harrington, Principal Architect, Seán Harrington Architects
Siobhán Mangan, Senior Health Promotion Officer, HSE, Health and Wellbeing Division
Nathalie Weadick, Director, Irish Architecture Foundation

Fee and Payment
The total fee for the project is €20,000, inclusive of research, consultation meetings, project development, realisation of project outcome and VAT. The fee will be given to the winning team in two instalments: one installment of €1 6,000 in January 201 7, after the winning team has been selected and announced, and a second installment of €4,000 on completion of the project.

Terms and conditions
– Applications received after 2 December will be deemed ineligible.
– While we encourage multidisciplinary teams to enter, the winning team must contain at least one architect or architectural graduate.
– Furthermore, one member of the team must be able to provide Public Liability insurance indemnifying the Council against all claims to the limit of €6.4 million and Employer’s Liability to the value of €1 3 million as required.
– The winning team may be subject to Garda Vetting.
– The winning team will be contracted by the Irish Architecture Foundation to undertake the project and will liase with dlr Arts Office in order to arrange collaboration and consultation with the user group, to secure site(s) or venue(s) for consultative elements, development of the project and the project outcome, as required, and to secure any permissions required for the project’s development and outcome.
– The project outcome must occur in Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown by October 201 7.

Further information
For further information, contact project manager Aideen McCole at Questions should be submitted by 23 November and answers will be circulated publicly on 25 November

Application form can be found here:Public Age Application form