The Beyond Barriers competition is an approach to design that provides a barrier-free community, inclusive of all disabilities and life challenges. Within our cities, homelessness affects not only homeless persons but also the entire community.  The homeless community often suffers from a lack of healthcare options, resulting in long-term illnesses and disabilities.

This competition will focus on designing a tiny house* community that is code compliant, creative, and esthetically pleasing. The design should highlight the provisions for a barrier-free design that allows equal access in an affordable and socially responsible manner. Each dwelling unit must provide sleeping, eating, bathing, and cooking facilities.

The design competition intends to provoke discussion that could provide innovative solutions for a real challenge within our communities.

The competition is open to students and professionals, working individually, in teams, or by firm.

*A tiny house is defined for this competition as a house no larger than 400sf.


On July 26, 1990, the Americans with Disabilities Act was signed into law. Access for all is a human and civil right. Our commitment as architects is to strengthen our communities through the built environment. By providing equal access to all, human dignity and respect within our communities can be realized. As the 30th anniversary of this monumental act was recently celebrated, we must look within our communities to understand the need of the residents and how we can resolve to create an environment in which all will prosper.


Entry application opens:  February 1
Submissions due: September 30
Presentation to the jury: October 12
Winner and Competition Celebration: November 11
Exhibition at Architecture and Design Exchange: Nov 11 - Dec 9

Visit the website here for more information and to participate