- Township High School District 211
District 211 Students Compete in Architecture and Design Competition
Students from across the District competed against each other in the District 211 Architecture Competition in which they designed an ideal and functional house. Each entry had to include four bedrooms and two and half bathrooms while being up to 3,500 square feet. The winning entry, submitted by Palatine High School senior Nelson Bartolo, will be the Building Construction Program house to be built on Berner Road in Elgin next year.
Work began on each student’s design at the start of the school year. More than 350 students in participated in designing homes and submitted entries to the competition. From those, ten entries, 2 from each school, were selected to present to a panel of judges at the G.A. McElroy Administration Center November 9.
“Students house designs were amazing. It was obvious that all of the D211 students took their time and did the proper research to create house designs that were appropriate tor the location,” said Palatine High School Applied Science Department Chair Mark Hibner. “Students followed the guidelines of the project and designed homes that included appropriate construction methods while infusing current interior design trends.”
During the finals, each of the ten students stood before a panel of judges which included architects, interior designers, teachers, and contractors. The student discussed the layout of each room as well as inspirations for various aspects of their unique designs. For Bartolo, part of the preparation was practicing his presentation repeatedly at home.
After each student presented their designs to the panel, the judges moved into deliberation to discuss all the designs. One judge, Mike Rafferty of Rafferty Architecture, has been involved with previous 3 competitions and has seen improvement in the students’ plans.
“Every year the presentations get better. The technology and support from their teachers really help prepare them and make them better,” he said. “I was very impressed by the underclassman representation. Their involvement in things like this will give them a great opportunity to witness fields like architecture and construction.”
Following the panel’s deliberation, each student called up to discuss what was liked as well as potential improvements for future designs. They were then presented with framed copies of their designs.
The judges stated following their deliberation that selecting an individual winner was difficult given the exceptional effort and design each student presented. They stated the decision was made to select a first and second place for the first time. They announced Palatine High School senior Audrey Birk as second place before announcing Batolo as the winner.
Bartolo, who has been involved in Computer Drafting courses since his freshman year said he was surprised and appreciative after the announcement.
“It just shows that hard work really does pay off,” Bartolo said. “I am thankful to my school for the opportunity to compete in something like this and to my teachers for their amazing support.”