Brief

Being a successful architect is very hard. While this is no secret to anyone who has lead a team or studied the profession; the less obvious thing is what to do about it. 

Architects stereotypically lean on the purity of their ideas over their practicality and application. Schools rarely teach about business and firms are subject to the swings of both the client and the economy. These cracks in the business model of architecture are constantly debated but industry-wide action seems non-existent.

At DesignClass we've been asking ourselves; can architects responded to these challenges by developing their own projects? How would this work and how could we help students & professionals expand their thinking of what architecture and business could be?

We went into this question knowing that there is a perceived conflict between architects and the businessmen who develop real-estate. After some consideration, we believe this perception is outdated and detrimental to the architectural profession. We believe that if architecture students & professionals were adept at the entire process of creating buildings we could build stronger firms that literally invest in their communities.

This brings us to the Architects as Developers Design Competition.

This is your challenge, design a piece of architecture that can be a potential development for you or your firm in the future. To showcase your design, you'll be creating a Listing Sheet that can be taken to a potential investor and used as a starting point for a future development.

The first step is to find a property that could be the site for a potential development. This can be a vacant site or a site that will need demolition. The point is to identify a piece of land that is underperforming and has opportunity.

Next, think about and analyze what type of development would serve that land well. Could it be a simple duplex? Perhaps a luxury private home or a mixed-use structure? It will all depend on the land you choose, what the context calls for, and what type of architecture you're passionate about.

Next, design a building that could be a potential development for that piece of land. How will you balance scale, aesthetics, and design with the practicalities of the building's role in the community?

Want to learn about becoming an architect as developer?


Learn from M-RAD Founder, Matthew Rosenberg as he delves deep into how he created one of the most dynamic architecture & development firms in Los Angeles.

You'll learn about design, real estate development, partnerships, hiring, and how to find your voice in a stressful and competitive industry. His lessons are practical and based on real experience with clients, employees, and projects.

Each lesson features exclusive videos and hands-on guides to help you learn how M-Rad sources new opportunities and develops their own projects.

Learn More

Join this competition and we plant a tree! 
DesignClass is a climate positive company. 

We offset our carbon footprint via Ecologi