Kevin McCloud backs TRADA Urban Buzz 2018 competition


Grand Designs’ Kevin McCloud has lent his support to TRADA’s University Challenge competition, to inspire the next generation of timber innovators to create inspiring designs and engineering solutions in cross-laminated timber

Speaking at Timber Expo at the NEC Birmingham, McCloud said: “I’m very excited about TRADA’s competition, which provides an opportunity to design with cross-laminated timber. CLT is such an incredibly versatile material.”

“I recently filmed in a factory in Austria where CLT is made, and what was so uplifting about that experience was not seeing the timber being made, but the factory itself, which was built entirely out of cross-laminated timber.

“I’m really looking forward to seeing the Urban Buzz designs, in the hope that they will fully explore and exploit the yet unfulfilled potential of this ground-breaking material.”

With only three weeks to go before entries close, TRADA’s Rupert Scott is urging students to encourage lecturers to sign them up for this prestigious competition. He said: “It’s vital you get your lecturer to sign you up. There are lots of reasons to enter– a generous cash prize, prestige and publicity on a national level.”

60 Students from 24 universities will gather at the University of Sheffield on 23-24 February to take part in an intense ‘charrette-style’ challenge, to conceive ways that timber can be used in the creation of the world’s first timber multi-storey car park.

Entrants will be divided into 12 teams to compete for cash prizes and an opportunity to showcase their talent to a distinguished audience and the national media.

Influential and successful timber design professionals from the world of business and science will collaborate with each team to help design a timber car park that is not only aesthetically pleasing but considers the transition to a greater number of hybrid and electric cars in the future.

Students are also expected to find innovative timber solutions to making cities and towns healthier and more pleasant places to work and live.

Scott added: “We are thrilled to have support from Kevin McCloud, who has been instrumental in encouraging a nation of Britons to build their dream home.

“We welcome entries to Urban Buzz 2018 which, thanks to the support of our notable judges and sponsors, promises to be our most exciting and challenging competition to date.

“TRADA’s University Challenge competition attracts the brightest and best in British architecture and engineering, providing the perfect opportunity for students to impress prospective employers and for businesses to connect with timber talent of the future.”

For background to the competition and details on how to enter Urban Buzz 2018, please visit: 


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