Prize Overview


The concept of the Sharpstown Prize for Architecture was to challenge graduate level architecture students to design a single-family residence with modern and progressive materials while adhering to the appropriate deed restrictions. Unlike many similar competitions, this one is unique in that the prize is the actual building of the home based on the winning entry.  

The house was constructed at 6822 Rowan, which was also the site of the internationally acclaimed Havel Ruck Projects art piece entitled “Sharp” which Michael Prentice commissioned in 2016.

Gerald D. Hines College of Architecture

The Gerald D. Hines College of Architecture and Design at the University of Houston, led by Dean Patricia Belton Oliver, was chosen as the partner for the inaugural competition. Distinguished Professor Rafael Longoria developed and conducted a graduate level studio class. Ten students participated – Brooks Caton, Mariela Flores, Michelle Gabriel, Alicia Lopez, Jennifer Minor, Andy Rowell, Nicholas Seckfort, Pooja Shetty, Blanca Soto, and Tanmay Thakker. The competition began on August 21, 2017 and concluded on November 25, 2017.  

Competition Guidelines

The guidelines were to design a single-family residence from the ground up on a 7,498 square foot lot in Sharpstown’s Section One. The house was to be no less than 1,000 square feet and no more than 1,200 square feet. The house was to have three bedrooms and two full bathrooms and was to be no more than two stories in height.

The total construction cost of the house was to not exceed $140,000 and included:

  • Foundation, driveway and walkway
  • Framing, roofing and exterior finishing
  • Plumbing and electrical – all finishes
  • Air conditioning – HVAC system
  • Major appliances (gas or electric) included refrigerator, washer/dryer, dishwasher, oven with stove top and garbage disposal

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