Zero Footprint Architecture : The ZERO Prize & The Re-Skinning Award

Zerofootprint is an organization dedicated to a mass reduction in global environmental impact. They provide software and services to individuals, governments, universities, and corporations that measures and manages carbon footprint and engages employees and citizens worldwide in combating climate change.

The ZEROprize

Zerofootprint is offering the ZEROprize to the design team who can take an older concrete high-rise structure* and, using re-skinning along with other retrofitting technologies, reduce its carbon, water, and energy footprint to net zero while also maintaining the highest architectural design standards. To secure the ZEROprize, a candidate building will be required to have a net zero footprint for one year.

Prize Context

North America's existing building infrastructure accounts for up to 40% of all greenhouse gases produced in the United States and Canada. In cities that figure can surpass 65%. Older buildings while structurally sound often waste precious energy and are a major source of the greenhouse gas emissions polluting our cities.

These buildings serve an important role and perform too well to demolish, but not well enough to remain as they are. What is the answer to this unsustainable condition? Together, modern re-skinning and retrofitting technologies offer a solution.

The purpose of the ZEROprize is to stimulate market-disrupting improvements in the design and development of retrofitting and re-skinning technologies (We use the term re-skinning as a shorthand for a holistic retrofit). These are the newly evolving technologies and building systems that improve the energy efficiency, sustainability, and liveability of older buildings.

Upgrading our existing inventory of high carbon footprint and water wasting buildings will reinvent our cities and make them more liveable.

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When Zerofootprint launched the Building Re-Skinning Competition in May of 2009, we knew it would capture the attention of global practitioners, media, and the public while also advancing interest in re-skinning and retrofitting technologies. It succeeded.

In the last two months a wave of comments, enquiries and suggestions about the project have arrived at the Zerofootprint office.

To better succeed with the competition's goal to make existing buildings more sustainable, we have transformed the Re-Skinning prize into the ZEROprize. The ZEROprize will be awarded to the first re-skinned and retrofitted building of a certain size to achieve a net zero footprint while operating for a minimum of one year. The challenge is clear and uses as its model the successful "X" prize won in 2004. We want the ZEROprize to capture the imagination of a generation and inspire new solutions for an immense environmental problem.

In addition to the ZEROprize — which can be submitted at any time—the supporting Zerofootprint Re-Skinning Award will be offered every year. The zerofootprint Re-Skinning Award is meant to attract state-of-the-art retrofitted and re-skinned buildings that are exceptional, but do not meet the performance standards of the ZEROprize.

Please note: the Re-Skinning Award entry date is now January 10, 2010.

For a related article and attachments click here.

The Re-Skinning Award Submission Guidelines661.67 KB
The ZEROprize Submission Guidelines289.11 KB