About the Competition

The Arizona Challenge is a regional design competition that seeks to inspire and ignite multidisciplinary teams of students to envision self-sustaining communities that lead first to prototyping and eventually, a whole new reality. The goal is nothing less than to shape our future cities and urban environments, well beyond the limitations of what currently exists. Given the freedoms provided by the structure of the competition, the pursuit is for ideas that push the extremes of design for a more sustainable and healthy way of life. Key variables include: changes to our land use patterns, transportation practices, water and energy usage and generation, including related policies, and the miniaturizing and decentralizing force of technology, all related to our own beliefs and behaviors. The educational and applied purpose of such concepts is to inspire “We, the people” to awaken and embark on a more integrated path to success.

The Arizona Challenge participants, through their design concepts, will offer an approach for engaging the community at large to participate and contribute to the development of a more rewarding way of life, inspired and supported by how we design those settlements. The competition provides a much needed opportunity to imagine and reach for the magnificent possibilities that exist beyond the reach of our current piecemeal codes, ordinances, development practices and behaviors that stand as barriers against the greater success that can be ours for the asking – by design. The intended outreach is for ideas to be applied in the fresh and welcoming atmosphere of the Arizona desert as models for the rest of the world.


The Two Worlds Community Foundation will release all specific information for the competition on January 18, 2011. The scope of work, site selected, scale, and overall expectations will be emailed to all participating teams, and will also be available for download from this page.


The Two Worlds Community Foundation will honor and reward winning participants for their vision and creativity, including three prizes for the best proposals and presentations. The Desert Gold Award will grant a $10,000 cash prize to the first place winner, the Desert Silver Award will grant a $2,500 cash prize to the second place winner, and the Desert Bronze Award will grant a $1,500 cash award for third place.

The Foundation will also give three honorary mentions for significant contributions that offered a range of specific insights involved in the overall process. All finalists will be informed of their achievements by letter and a phone call and will be invited to make a final presentation of their work at a public ceremony to take place in the Phoenix Metro Area.