TAMPA, Fla. — The Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS) and the American Institute of Architecture Students (AIAS) announced the FORTIFIED Roof Design Competition.

The IBHS-sponsored competition challenges college seniors to design an affordable, sustainable, aesthetically pleasing, hurricane-resistant roof system. For the first time ever, the winning design will be built at full scale, and then tested against hurricane-strength winds and wind-driven rain at IBHS’ unique, state-of-the-art Research Center in South Carolina. Total prize money is $2,750, including $1,500 for the first place winning design.

“This competition is an excellent opportunity to educate the next generation of architects about the importance of designing structures that can effectively withstand the tests of time and Mother Nature,” noted Julie Rochman, IBHS president and CEO. “No home or community is truly sustainable, unless it is durable – and we recognize that affordability and aesthetics are very important to homeowners as well. That is why we’ve set the bar high enough in this competition to incorporate all of these competing priorities.” 

“Competitions are a wonderful way for students to apply the theory they have been learning in school to actual problems they may face as professionals,” said Joshua Caulfield, IOM chief executive officer at AIAS. “We are delighted to partner with such exceptional organizations, such as IBHS, to bring real world challenges to the educational landscape.”

As part of the competition, participants must demonstrate a keen understanding of the following principles:
• Fundamentals involved in building, attaching, and executing a roof to the structure below.
• Application of roofing techniques in a hurricane-prone environment – as laid out by the IBHS FORTIFIED superior construction standard, now in increasingly wide use along the Gulf and Atlantic Coasts.
• How materials, techniques, and application of technology relate to roofing, from both sustainability and building safety perspectives.
• Affordable, effective use of new materials, forms, and techniques as they relate to roofing.
Competing design teams are being encouraged to employ sustainable design principles, while increasing awareness of the impact of damage, destruction and natural disasters on the built environment and on ecological awareness. 

The winning design will be selected by a jury comprising several experts in disaster-resilient construction and architecture. They are Fred Malik, IBHS FORTIFIED programs manager; Erica Rioux Gees, executive director of the American Institute of Architects Legacy, Inc.; Eric Zaddock, AIA, architectural and urban designer in Texas; Kevin Fitzgerald, AIA, director of Emerging Professionals; and Christopher Morrison, AIA LEED-AP BD+C, architect at Cunningham | Quill Architects.

More than 30 teams of architectural students from across the country have registered for the competition. Competition submissions will be evaluated based on:
• Originality of design
• Demonstration of knowledge about materials, products, and installation that will result in a resilient roofing surface; 
• Affordability; and,
• Creativity, as well as an aesthetic that complements the community, environment, and the landscape of the property.

The deadline for submitting final designs is May 1.

For more information, visit www.disastersafety.org or www.aias.org.