SLU news

Student design competition in Umeå is now open

Published: 04 April 2024
Map over city and its surroundings.

The student design competition arranged by SLU Urban Futures, in co-operation with Umeå municipality, has been launched on Canvas. Students in the field of Landscape Architecture and sustainable urban development have the opportunity to design processes of co-producing a multivalent urban landscape – shaping a unique urban setting of Umeå’s future.

SLU Röbäcksdalen, a large agricultural field research station operated by SLU located on the outskirts of Umeå City, lies adjacent to residential neighbourhoods to the north, and open agricultural land to the south. The site provides an important urban recreational environment for the metropolitan area, as well as a vital research environment for SLU. Currently, the land and research infrastructure are used by several of SLU's faculties as well as for external activities by other governmental and societal stakeholders connected to agriculture and food production as well as to nature conservation, historical heritage, transport infrastructure and urbanisation as well as water management and urban forestry. 

The ongoing urbanisation processes in the region and the requirement for extended research on-site bring forward questions such as: How can the site retain scientific integrity while remaining open and publicly accessible? How could an urban multifunctional site for recreation, biodiversity and research be co-created? How can the public awareness of SLU research conducted at the site be increased? 
The incoming designs should combine urban development and ecological demands, support multiple and co-present uses and users, reveal untapped on-site potentials, envision innovative socio-technical solutions to sustainable growth challenges, and identify opportunities for an on-site urban Living Lab approach to scientific research. 

About the competition

Design competition period:  March 2024 - August 2024.
Prize: 1st prize 10,000 SEK, 2nd and 3rd prize each 5,000 SEK.
Participants: SLU students – primarily from SLU Landscape Architecture programs, but participation of groups from different study programs is encouraged
More information: The competition is available on CANVAS, where students can log in and read more.

SLU Röbäcksdalen - A research station for experimental knowledge production

Röbäcksdalen in Umeå is a Field Research Station, a Dairy Research Barn, and a multifunctional landscape situated at the Röbäck plains - the largest continuous agricultural land in northern Sweden. The urban location creates opportunities for collaborations across disciplines and sectors.