Eleven staff members from HFA made up five teams to create designs for submission in the Little Free Library Competition, a competition to design a buildable permanent installation to house 20 average sized books. The small libraries will be outside by a sidewalk, bike or walking path and must be designed to protect books from rain, high and low temperatures, wind and snow.
This project provides an opportunity to raise awareness about literacy and help more books reach more people, while raising funds for the Ozark Literacy Council (OLC). OLC is a nonprofit organization that has been providing basic literacy and language services to adults in Northwest Arkansas for 50 years.
The design competition was presented by The OLC, Northwest Arkansas AIA, and the Fay Jones School of Architecture on August 22, 2014.
Jason Boze and Matt Turner, two young emerging leaders at HFA, took charge in organizing the design competition at HFA; from organizing the teams, reviewing final submissions, and setting up times for HFA teams and advisors to collaborate.
Along with Jason and Matt, Esteban Ayala, Steven Baker, Andy De Young, Daniel Gunn, Shay Hawkins, Stephanie Kohlberg, Erica Richter, Phillip Richter, Chet Savage, and Grace Smith all participated on teams and AIA professionals, Dave Wilgus, Lori Filbeck, Jeff Brust, Bo Ebbrecht, and Allen Hart, provided feedback and assistance.
“We were pleasantly surprised by the desire of our staff interested in participating. This competition offers our staff an opportunity to engage in design outside our corporate client constraints and collaborate across departments. It’s a great outlet,” said Dave Wilgus, Associate at HFA.
The sense of community, collaboration, and excitement for learning and designing shown on this project were great displays of the culture HFA has continued to develop since relocating to new headquarters in January, 2014.
All the entries exhibited the type of design thought and forward thinking HFA has come to rely upon from its team members. HFA staff members, Esteban Ayala and Matt Turner won 2nd place with “Pequeña Bibliotecha” and Daniel Gunn won 3rd place with “The Book Shelf”. The winners were selected at the 2014 Arkansas State AIA Convention on October 16th.
Each library chosen for construction by a sponsor will be given $500 for building costs. The sponsors can choose any submission to be built. First, second and third place winners received a prize of $300, $200 and $100 respectively.
Detail about this community outreach literacy initiative and design project can be found at: