Get ready Bay Area for tomorrow's site announcement!


Get ready, Bay Area! Tomorrow, we’ll be announcing where teams will be working with Bay Area communities in the Collaborative Design Phase.

Here’s an update on Resilient by Design and Bay Area Challenge progress so far.


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Resilient by Design launched in May 2017 with an open call to engineers, architects, designers, artists, dreamers, community members and students to come together and create teams of experts willing to tackle the challenge of building resilience to climate change. 51 teams entered, and 10 teams were selected to participate in late August. Resilient by Design also invited community members to help suggest local places that are vulnerable to the threats of sea level rise, severe storms, flooding, and earthquakes. These site ideas helped shape the Collaborative Research Phase.

The Bay Area Challenge consists of three phases: Launch and open-call, a Collaborative Research Phase and a Collaborative Design Phase. Throughout the fall of 2017, the 10 Design teams explored the Bay Area to study the intricacies of our unique region, from the effects of gentrification to the impacts of climate change, regional transportation challenges, and the unique cultural history of our communities. Now, the teams have been matched by our Research Advisory Committee with 10 unique places in the Bay Area and are entering the final stretch of the Challenge with the Collaborative Design Phase.


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Starting this January 2018, the teams will work with community members and leaders to develop 10 unique approaches to resilience that can be built on and borrowed by communities across the region, state and globe.

By combining the technical knowledge of international experts with the local knowledge of Bay Area residents, the process aims to create solutions that will tackle ongoing climate issues impacting the entire Bay Area, like sea level rise, severe flooding, and seismic risks, alongside other, sometimes more pressing, challenges, including lack of housing, displacement, limited access to public land, and outdated transportation.

The end result in May 2018 will be new ideas — ready to be built in diverse communities around the Bay Area — and a blueprint for the region to keep building resilience at a local level and set an example for the world.


The final designs will be judged by an esteemed jury, and results will be announced in May 2018. The Challenge will look for every Design Team to show strong stakeholder support and be aligned with the resilience strategies adopted by the cities of San Francisco, Oakland, and Berkeley as part of the 100 Resilient Cities Program. These include, but are not be limited to: a focus on multi-stakeholder, multi-benefit problem-solving strategies; demonstration of feasibility from a technological and engineering perspective; a recognition of the need for a regional strategy; and, a focus on equitable and measurable community engagement and integration into existing sea level rise action plans.


Our work is not done. We’re committed to turning these ideas—invested in and created by communities—into real-world models and solutions for other cities to implement.

At the end of the challenge, Resilient by Design will leave a legacy of a better, stronger, safer Bay Area for everyone to enjoy and will build our region’s much-needed resilience to sea level rise, severe storms, flooding, and earthquakes. Additionally, the need for resilient solutions is compounded in our region by housing and income disparity challenges that face an increasing number of Bay Area residents every year.

Stay tuned for tomorrow’s announcement and more information on how to get involved!

Tira OkamotoBay Area