Tokyo is Japan’s capital city, the largest urban area in the entire country and one at the forefront of technology and industrial innovation. Though its unique location on the Pacific coast of central Honshu makes it susceptible to earthquakes, volcanoes, typhoons and rising sea levels, some of the greatest devastation is being inflicted by digital devices.
Increased use of digital devices, everything from computers to mobile phones, can have seriously detrimental effects on mental health. Not only does excessive screen time disrupt natural sleep cycles, too much time spent on social media can cause increased anxiety and depression.
A number of studies were published in Japan detailing the impact of depression on the Japanese public, with 84% of firms reporting mental health problems among their employees. In fact, the Japanese Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare even found in a 2009 study that depression was costing the economy the equivalent of over $30bn.
For the Tokyo Urban Meditation Cabins competition, Buildner is asking participants to submit their designs for a meditation cabin prototype that could be replicated and planted around various spots in Tokyo. The cabins should serve as a small public sanctuary where people can take a break to reconnect with themselves.
Participants are asked to explore how architecture can function in a therapeutic way and address the challenge of how to successfully inject a small tranquil space in otherwise stressful environment.
3 winning proposals, 2 special award recipients and 6 honourable mentions will be selected. Buildner (formerly Bee Breeders) will award a total of 7,000 € in prize money to competition winners as follows:
1st Prize – 3,000 €
2nd Prize – 1,500 €
3rd Prize – 1000 €
+ 6 honourable mentions
Buildner Student Award – 1000 € + 50 € gift card at ARCHHIVE BOOKS
Buildner Sustainability Award – 500 €