The Department of Agriculture (DA) has teamed up with RE-TERRA, a youth organization, to conduct a design competition for future architects, designers, and developers to garner innovative and transformative designs that integrate agriculture into the urban setting.

“Time and again, I have emphasized the crucial role of the youth in agriculture. They are the source of many bright and fresh ideas, having a strong grasp of emerging trends and technologies,” said Agriculture Secretary William Dar.

“We need to optimize the potential contributions of the youth in producing our own food.”

“We need to optimize the potential contributions of the youth in producing our own food, which has grown to be an enormous challenge especially during this continuing COVID-19 pandemic,” Dar added.

The design competition, dubbed as “RE-TERRA 2021,” aims to “re-terraform” Metro Manila back to its innate fertility and abundance, using technologies and practices that will address food production and food security.

“Through this competition, we aim to encourage our future architects, designers, and planners to include agriculture, from food production to food distribution, as an integral part of our urban infrastructure, landscape, and community settlements,” said Architect Kathleen Encorporado, founder of RE-TERRA.

“This means inserting every means of agriculture into every mode of urbanity.”

“This means inserting every means of agriculture into every mode of urbanity. Tactically, this involves strategies that mobilize every component and feature of our varied and dense urban landscape towards establishing lasting food security for every Filipino,” Encorporado added.

Registration for the competition closed on December 15, 2020, while proposal submission is due on January 22, 2021. At the moment, there are 149 officially registered teams.

The four finalists will be announced on February 20, 2021. They will present their design proposals during the final round on March 16, 2021 to a panel of nine esteemed judges including the agriculture chief and Pasig City Mayor Vico Sotto.

The first-place winner will receive P250,000, and the three finalists, P50,000, plus token gifts.

“For this competition, there will be three expository sites to choose from within Pasig City for the design proposals to creatively and innovatively showcase urban agriculture. As you know, Pasig City is one of the country’s largest and densest metropolises,” she said.

The three expository sites are:

·         2,400-square meter (sqm) open lot, in Agapito Subd., Brgy. Santolan;

·         2,500-sqm linear park, along Buting Creek waterfront, Brgy. Buting; and

·         4,300-sqm linear park, along Pasig River waterfront, Brgy. Kapasigan.

Leading the panel of judges are the agriculture head, Sotto, and DA Food Security Ambassador James Reid. They will be joined by a roster of experts in the field of architecture and designs and urban planning.

“We hope that through RE-TERRA 2021, we will ignite the fire among the youth to be more involved in making agriculture more modern and well-adept with the emerging technologies and innovation,” Dar concluded. 


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