T3XTURE Journal and the AIA Baltimore and BAF Lecture Series Committee announce a design competition in conjunction with the 2019 Lecture Series.

Waterfront Partnership’s Healthy Harbor Initiative has set a goal of a swimmable and fishable Inner Harbor. What could this look like? In addition to the spring lectures, a design competition related to the theme of the fourth issue of T3XTURE, Edge, invites Maryland architecture firms to submit design concepts that explore the edge of the harbor and city. The 2019 AIA Baltimore & BAF Lecture Series and Design Competition will culminate with an exhibition of selected submissions, and publication all lecture programs and exhibited work in T3XTURE Issue 4.

The goals of the 2019 Lecture Series and parallel design competition are to stimulate a robust discourse among the design professions and the public, promote new and forward thinking design ideas and highlight work by local designers, and encourage allied organizations and diverse disciplines to participate and create a cross-disciplinary dialogue focusing on significant issues and solutions specific to Baltimore’s harbor and city edge.


“What kind of built structure can be created that would figure into the complexion of the Baltimore harbor in an unprecedented way, at once constructive and imaginative? It would at once reflect the unique texture of the harbor and its history and contribute to its evolution in times to come. Such a structure would stand, or float, somewhere between land and sea, perhaps at their very edge or maybe in the midst of the harbor waters. Wherever it is located, and however it is constructed, it will enter into engagement with Land, Sea, and Edge: it will exist as a fourth member of this fateful triad, one that is designed for the very place in which it is set. It will itself be an edge, not of a solid and stolid thing, but of a uniquely configured edge-world…”

– Edward S. Casey

Teams are asked to propose a design solution to enhance the harbor and city edge in Baltimore. Designs will reflect on, illustrate, define, and/or re-define Edges. Teams are encouraged to consider the following prompts to give direction to their design proposals:

(1) If the harbor becomes swimmable and fishable, what could the harbor edge look like?

(2) How can design enhance the connection between the city and harbor?

(3) What responsibility do we have to the harbor edge?

(4) How can we address spatial equity and create a harbor accessible to all residents of Baltimore?

(5) How can design solutions address resiliency in Baltimore, considering expanding flood plains and rising sea levels?

(6) What is the harbor edge in Baltimore? Should it be hard? Soft? Permeable?

(7) How can design address community engagement and education with harbor clean-up and pollution prevention?

(8) How can design at the harbor and city edge engage the public while respecting the natural environment?

Key Dates

February 25, 2019 – Design Competition Announcement

March 20, 2019 – Spring Lecture: Edge of Edge

March 27, 2019 – Spring Lecture: Engaging the Edge

April 3, 2019 – Design Competition Registration Deadline

April 24, 2019 – Spring Lecture: The Intentional and Unintentional Edge

May 1, 2019 – Spring Lecture: The Edge of Experience

May 17, 2019 – Design Competition Q&A Deadline

May 24, 2019 – Design Competition Submission Deadline

June 14, 2019 – Submissions Reviewed and Selected Work Notification

Fall 2019 – Exhibition (venue and date to be determined)

Fall 2019 – T3XTURE publication to be released (date to be determined)

Registration and Fees

Deadline to Register: April 3, 2019

The design competition is open to any architecture or design firm in the state of Maryland. Firms may register multiple project teams. Teams must have discrete members. Only one submission per registered project team is allowed.

Complete the Registration Form

Pay the Registration Fee (Paypal):

AIA Member Rate: $50 | Non-Member Rate: $100 | Students: FREE

Last Minute Registration Fee: $150 (after the April 3 Registration Deadline and before the May 24 Submission Deadline)

All fees benefit the AIA Baltimore and BAF Spring Lecture Series.