Student Design Team Wins YBCBD International Design Competition!

in Properties, Transportation

A team from San Francisco’s Academy of Art University was selected from more than 35 international entries as the winner of a student competition to design a portable bicycle corral for the City’s Yerba Buena neighborhood, it was announced today by the Yerba Buena Community Benefit District (YBCBD). The portable bicycle corral will meet the growing demand for bike parking at cultural and special events in Yerba Buena, and encourage even more people to use sustainable alternatives of transportation.

The winning design, “Pedalution,” incorporates a foldable bicycle structure on recycled rubber casters for easy transport by one or two people. The entry features silhouettes of characteristics found in the Yerba Buena neighborhood and the city, such as the Golden Gate Bride, Yerba Buena Gardens, Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial fountain, trees and people.

“We felt it was important to show diversity and range in our design inspired by the eclectic mix found in San Francisco and specifically Yerba Buena,” said Jill McDonald, a member of the winning team with fellow Academy of Art University students Marissa Gurevitz and Kevin Capo. “We represented the iconic bridge, the calming nature found in the park, particularly the green space and water features, and of course the people who make this area so special.”

The competition was sponsored by the YBCBD and the San Francisco Planning Department’s Pavement to Parks program and endorsed by several project partners, including the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency, San Francisco Bicycle Coalition and SPUR. The winning team received a $500 cash prize and will work with San Francisco-based Spoke Systems to fabricate a prototype to be used in the Yerba Buena neighborhood. All entries are part of an exhibition at SPUR May 21-31 in downtown San Francisco.

Teams registered were from the Bay Area and from many other countries including Slovenia, Spain, India, and Iran. In addition to the winner, the finalists included two other teams from the Academy of Art University, UC Berkeley, College of Environmental Design, and San Jose State University. The judging panel included representatives from the YBCBD, neighborhood residents, local nonprofits and city agencies with experience in engineering, art, architecture and transportation. The design guidelines required the unit to be moved by 1-2 people, secure, easily compressed, visually engaging, easy to use by cyclists, and built for under $10,000.

“All of the designs were beautiful, versatile and compressible,” said Leah Shahum, executive director, San Francisco Bicycle Coalition and jury member. “The portable corral is an innovative way to meet the ever growing demand for more bike parking in the Yerba Buena neighborhood. We commend YBCBD for once again creating smart ways to solve real neighborhood problems.”

“Our goal was to tap into the creativity of design students to provide us with unique ideas that reflect the creativity of our neighborhood. And they succeeded with flying colors,” said Cathy Maupin, YBCBD executive director. “This is another element of our Street Life plan of more than 30 projects that we’d like to implement over the next decade to improve our neighborhood.”

The nonprofit YBCBD is a community-based organization working to improve the quality of life in Yerba Buena, to make it an even more attractive place for people to live, work, study and explore. The rapidly growing and eclectic neighborhood is home to the City’s highest concentration of art galleries, a diverse residential base, incredible hotel offerings, Moscone Convention Center, and unique shopping and dining experiences.