Register: FEB/08/2019, Submit: FEB/19/2019, Eligibility: Architects, designers, enthusiasts, companies, students; individually, teams up to 4 members, Fee: Architects, designers, enthusiasts, companies 80 USD, students 60 USD (NOV/06 – DEC/07/2018); architects, designers, enthusiasts, companies 100 USD, students 70 USD (DEC/08/2018 – JAN/11/2019); architects, designers, enthusiasts, companies 120 USD, students 80 USD (JAN/12 – FEB/08/2019), Awards: 1st Prize: 3,000 USD, 2nd Prize: 1,500 USD, 3rd Prize: 500 USD, 6 Honorable Mentions

One of the biggest appeals of starting your own business is escaping from the rat race and the urban jungle, and giving yourself the freedom to work where and when you want. The evolution of the job market has made it more possible than ever for individuals to work remotely, setting up their laptops in coffee shops around the world in search of a more flexible work environment. However, with little structure and no accountability, remote workers quickly started searching for more effective workspaces, hence the creation of coworking spaces. Coworking spaces provide a professional yet relaxed environment; one that is open to collaboration with other similarly-minded individuals, but still provide complete autonomy and flexibility.

For the Urban Zoo Coworking Design Challenge, competition participants are tasked with designing the interior concept for a new chain of coworking spaces set to launch their first location in the heart of Latvia’s capital city, Riga in spring 2019.

Urban Zoo Coworking looks to be “a home for creative beasts”, and participants will be creating the interior identity of the brand, one that can be applied to each subsequent location to open.

Urban Zoo Coworking is looking to become an internationally-recognised brand, known for promoting tomorrow’s concept of a dynamic and flexible workplace that focuses on sustainable, ergonomic design. Launching first in Riga, Urban Zoo Coworking has plans to quickly expand, opening coworking spaces in Scandinavia and then across Western Europe.


The focus of the Urban Zoo is to provide quality over quantity in terms of their coworking space, in an effort to distinguish it from traditional office layouts. The purpose of the space is to invoke creative thinking and collaboration with other like-minded individuals, therefore an element of play should be incorporated into the designs, either as a dedicated area or throughout the space.

That being said, there are some criteria that should be included: a closed, soundproof meeting room that can accommodate up to 6 people; 1 soundproof “telephone booth”; a kitchen and a zone to take a break. The most important criteria is a clear and comprehensive understanding of an ergonomic layout that maximises the number of available workspaces while still being comfortable and welcoming.

  • Efficient layout for the workspaces (quantity of the workspaces will range from 15-40)
  • Soundproof meeting room for 6 people
  • One soundproof telephone booth
  • Small open concept library
  • Kitchen
  • Relaxation/play area (can be combined with kitchen)
  • Small storage space (2-4m2)

The Avenue Programme is flexible, open for modifications and improved development strategies.