Design a Building of the Future Competition

100 years ago (just after the First World War), UCEM’s founder, Sir William Wells, responded to the Prime Minister’s call for ‘Homes fit for Heroes’ and established a College to provide the highest standards of training for surveyors, and homes for returning soldiers. 100 years later, we are still beavering away educating our students in the creation of a better built environment.

As such, we’re asking you to help us celebrate our 100th birthday Design a Building of the Future!

Competition details

You will need to provide us with a drawing of your Building of the Future, annotated with details of its sustainable features. To ensure we’re all on the same page, a ‘building’ is a structure with walls and a roof that stands in one place. Your building could range from a library or a social club to a home or school. The world is your oyster!

There are 2 categories: Years 7 – 8 and Years 9 – 10 and three winners will be chosen from each category.

Each winner will be invited to partake in a trip to the BRE Innovation Park, accompanied by a responsible adult, where you will be able to witness innovative building design and technology demonstration, gain an insight into the variety of solutions to sustainability needs, see inside some unique research laboratories, and meet with world-leading specialists in sustainability, fire engineering and a whole host of other scientific and digital fields.

The winners will be announced LIVE between 11:00 – 12:30 on Thursday 16 May 2019 during a schools outreach talk entitled

What is Surveying and what opportunities can it bring for the future?

which is an exciting opportunity to find out all about what a career in surveying entails. The event will be live-streamed on the UCEM YouTube channel and the winners will be revealed by the Mayor of Newham.

The competition is now open! Closing date for entries: Midnight on 7 April 2019.

What we are looking for

Designs will be accepted in any media including a hand drawing, Word document, PowerPoint presentation, JPEG image or Minecraft file. Don’t worry – there is no file size limit.

We will be judging entries on their environmental sustainability, social sustainability, and originality (also known as WOW Factor!). For instance, are the materials you have chosen recyclable? Are they cost effective? How is your building powered?

Whatever your ideas… get creative! We would like to see designs that show a flare for originality with a thorough understanding of sustainability. We can’t wait to see what awesome ideas you come up with! Time to wow those judges!

Hints, tips and resources

Download the competition poster and spread the word!

Competition poster

You will find plenty of hints, tips and ideas for incorporating sustainability into your designs by clicking on the below links.

The Three Pillars of Sustainability

Materials which can shorten the time it takes to build homes and make them more affordable

Why we need to build sustainably and what we should be building with

The boring but important stuff

Entries need to be your own work and must be accompanied by a consent form signed by your parent or guardian.

Finally, remember to read through our Terms and Conditions thoroughly.

For any questions, please contact us at

Submit your entry: