In an elaborate ceremony held at The Putra World Trade Centre Hall 1 in Kuala Lumpur on 17 Sept 2014, the Universiti Teknologi Malaysia team consisting of students from the Department of Architecture, Faculty of Built Environment, and the Department of Structure and Materials, Faculty of Civil Engineering was awarded the coveted first prize in the Malaysian Structural Steel Association (MSSA) Students’ Open Ideas Competition. The prize giving ceremony was held in conjunction with the Construction Industry Development Board (CIDB) Malaysia’s International Construction Week 2014. The First Prize award carried with it a cash prize of RM10,000 and a trophy.
The competition was for the design of an “Innovative Community-Disaster Convertible Centre (iC-Dcc). The winning team was supervised by Assoc. Prof. Dr. Dilshan Remaz Ossen of the Department of Architecture and Assoc. Prof. Dr. Arizu Sulaiman from the Department of Structure and Materials. The team consists of Mr. Chin Yang (Team Leader, Master of Architecture), Ms. Gan Lay Cheng (Master of Architecture), Mr. Stephen Feng (Master of Architecture), Mr. Ahmad Hasib Bakhteri (Master of Architecture) and Ms. Arlina Syahira binti Saifol Azami (Bachelor of Civil Engineering). Their design, aside from addressing the fundamental requirements of the competition brief, also focused on the innovative use of sustainable building design and energy generation.
The Competition was open for entries from all Public Universities in Malaysia. It promotes the use of structural steel in the Malaysian Architectural Design and Building Industry, and emphasised on the innovative design of Community Centres that are convertible to Disaster Relief Centres, the design of which could be adopted for Community Centres in Malaysia. The competition also promotes collaboration between architectural and structural engineering students to come up with the innovative designs and had to meet criteria such as understanding the contexts of the community, innovative response to disaster situations and sustainable building considerations. A short list of ten entries was earlier selected consisting of four from UTM, four from UiTM and 2 from USM. A team from UiTM won the second place and USM won the third place. Dr. Dilshan Remaz, supervisor of the UTM winning team said of the competition, “ It creates several opportunities. Students address real issues and challenges that need innovative solutions. It provides freedom to be innovative and yet force students to collaborate in teams that include other professions, and they are given the opportunity to sell their ideas. All in all students get the best experience and exposure that contribute to a successful career ahead.” For the winning UTM team, the competition is “a Synergy of students from different studying backgrounds is able to produce a state-of-the-art design as an answer to contemporary issues of disaster and community.”