Structural Concrete 2017 competition winners announced

13 Sep 2017

The Concrete Centre’s annual student competition, in partnership with Laing O’Rourke has been won by a team from Imperial College. The 2017 competition brief for teams of engineering students was to design a theatre in the round around a number of difficult design constraints.

The winners were announced at a prize-giving ceremony at The Concrete Centre’s autumn seminar held at The Building Centre on the 14th September. The winners were also invited to a celebratory dinner with the competition sponsors’ Laing O’Rourke and the competition judging panel of Sam Wong, Careys Construction; Roger Hewitt, Arcadis; Muiris Moynihan, Laing O’Rourke and Jenny Burridge of The Concrete Centre.  

The 2017 competition attracted entries from across the UK schools of engineering and there were three prize categories. The winners were:

  • First Prize: Imperial College
  • Runner-up: Glasgow Caledonian
  • Sustainability: University of Leeds

The competition brief was to design a teatre in the round under design constraints such as location - the theatre was to be built on the banks of a major tidal river in South East England, this proved to be a tough challenge. Jenny Burridge, judge and head of structural engineering at The Concrete Centre said “We were delighted at the number of entries in to this year’s competition, but the brief proved to be tough, and judges were looking for those that made a good attempt at providing a working solution addressing all the design considerations”.

Imperial College students managed to impress the judges with a well thought out design solution described by the judges as having an innovative approach alongside the clear and informative drawings. Their submission showed detailed consideration of construction sequence along with being fully referenced. 

The runner-up was Glasgow Caledonian. The judges’ feedback on this submission was that it had a robust consideration of disproportionate collapse. The hand codes where thorough and well laid out with specific solutions proposed in their 'great' sustainability statement.

The sustainability prize was awarded to The University of Leeds student Thomas Reardon. This entry was praised for being a clear sustainability report which included ground source heating,solar panels, health and safety considerations and self cleaning glass. A basment was added to the design to connect the back of house to the stage area

The brief for the next competition “Structural Concrete 2018” was also launched at the event and is for a new office building. More information can be found at