BP Student Ideas Competition


The 2019 BP Student Ideas Competition at the Chicago Architecture Biennial invites young people to respond to the following prompt:

Design a safe community space where young people can share ideas and take action on a local or global issue. Your space can be a physical place, an object, or an event.

The competition is sponsored by BP America and organized by the Chicago Architecture Biennial, in partnership with the Chicago Architecture Center. The competition will welcome submissions that explore ideas about architecture and the built environment from a wide range of disciplines including design but also the humanities, visual and performing arts, and STEM fields. Strong entries will be community specific, imaginative, and exhibit a creative use of materials.

Download the Competition Manual for challenge details and submission guidelines.

All work must be submitted by 11:59pm CST on December 6, 2019 to the competition portal to qualify for jury review. The BP Student Ideas Competition is free to enter. See Competition Manual for details.




  • Free to enter
  • Open to students from Chicagoland and Northwest Indiana
  • Open to students in grades 7 through 12


September 19, 2019
Competition registration opens
December 6, 2019
Competition closes; submissions due by 11:59pm CST
December 11, 2019
Jury Review
December 17, 2019
Final Showcase and Awards Ceremony


The jury will select  finalists to compete for first, second, and third place prizes. Competition winners will receive varying cash prizes up to $500,  public recognition at the final showcase and their work on display at the Chicago Architecture Biennial.  See the Competition Manual for more details.

Winning entries from the 2019 Spring competition are listed at https://chicagoarchitecturebiennial.org/learn/bp_competition

Winning entries from the 2017 BP Student Design Competition are listed below. The 2017 BP Student Design Competition invited young Chicagoans to solve a design challenge. Students chose to either create a bus shelter advertisement promoting a Chicago neighborhood, or design a public library that could serve as a vibrant community space. The 2017 Biennial theme, “Make New History,” served as the inspiration for the competition.

2017 Graphic Design Winners

First Place
Graphic Design Division First Place Winner

Roberto Duarte
Benito Juarez Community Academy
Grade 11

Second Place
Graphic Design Division Second Place Winner

Lisbeth Droz
Kelvyn Park High School
Grade 11

Third Place
Graphic Design Third Place Winner

Manuel Diaz
John F. Kennedy High School
Grade 11

The finalists are Christian Cerna (Junior, John F. Kennedy High School), Jovanni Chavez (6th grade, George Washington Elementary School), Mary Coats (Junior, Kenwood Academy high School), Dellanara Delgado (Junior, Kelvyn Park High School), Emmanuel Gomez (Junior, Benito Juarez Community Academy), Jimena Saldana (8th grade, Emiliano Zapata Academy), Pheonix Wojnarowski (Senior, John F. Kennedy High School).

View all graphic design finalists

2017 Architecture Winners

First Place
Architecture Division First Place Winner

Uriel Gutierrez
ACE Technical Charter High School
Grade 12

Second Place
Architecture Division Second Place Winner

Miguel Rodriguez
Curie Metropolitan High School
Grade 12

Third Place
Architecture Division Third Place Winner

Autumn Woodley
Simeon Career Academy
Grade 11

The finalists are Roberto Arroyo (Junior, ITW Speer Academy), Team: Awesome Designers (Janise Poole, Tasima Allen, Roger Space, Kadeijah Bailey and Xavier Dennis) (Juniors at ACE Technical Charter High School), Junteng Chen (Senior, Curie Metropolitan High School), Brenda Gutierrez (Junior, Benito Juarez Community Academy), Galilea Ines (Junior, CICS Northtown Academy), Milena Marchan (Junior, Northside College Prep), and Cesar Teliz (Senior, Curie Metropolitan High School).

View all architecture finalists