Ecolodge Design Competition

The following are the general conditions and requirements of the design competition.


Conditions and Instructions

Issued 2 April 2001

sponsored by The Ministry of Tourism The Commonwealth of the Bahamas and The InterAmerican Development Bank The Bahamas


The Ministry of Tourism of the Commonwealth of the Bahamas, and the InterAmerican Development Bank (IDB), are sponsoring a competition for the design of an Ecolodge facility that will serve as an example of the principles of sustainable design as applied to nature-based tourism in the Bahamas and the Caribbean. The proposed site (see Exhibit A to be issued under separate cover) is on the east coast of Andros Island located in an area adjacent to Long Cay, Blanket Sound and near Bowens Sound. The site is adjacent to the proposed Blue Hole Reserve within an area designated as a proposed Marine Replenishment Area.


Has been designated the "Year of Ecotourism" by the World Tourism Organization (WTO). 2002 is also the year of the Second Earth Summit. (The Bahamas was a signatory to Agenda 21 at the First Earth Summit). In anticipation of those events, the Ministry of Tourism is taking a pro-active role through this competition. It is intended to serve as a demonstration of how sustainable design techniques can be specifically applied to tourism in the Bahamas. The competition itself will be a vehicle to heighten public awareness of ecotourism, and identify the issues and opportunities surrounding this type of tourism in the Bahamas. In the past the Bahamas has received recognition for its concern for the environment. It twice received the Green Globe Award for The Out Islands of the Bahamas – A Sustainable Tourism Policy, Guidelines and Implementation Strategy (1995) and the Ecotourism Workshop Series. It also received Honorable Mention in the Conde Nast Ecotourism Awards for the IDB Study: Development Assessment for Acklins and Crooked Islands (1997). Ecotourism is the fastest growing market niche in world tourism. The Bahamas has an opportunity to become a leading destination in the ecotourism market. For purposes of this competition "ecotourism" shall be defined as follows: A form of travel for pleasure that has a low Impact on the natural and cultural environment, gives the visitor a better understanding of the unique qualities of the place being visited, contributes to the well being of local people and promotes conservation.


The proposed site is a narrow limestone spine (known as an Oolitic Ridge) that separates a pristine mangrove from the islands and beaches of Blanket Sound. The site area is near a proposed Marine Replenishment Area, and the Ecolodge is intended to provide guests with access to a variety of marine and Island environments, and serve as a vehicle for interpretation and conservation. The site was selected because it represents an opportunity to demonstrate sustainable design response to a variety of natural environments that would be relevant to other islands in the Bahamas and the Caribbean Basin. The site, the surrounding land and marine environment represent an area that is rich in biodiversity, and outstanding viewscapes. A short distance from the site are extensive second growth pine forests offering additional interpretive experiences, that are in contrast to the marine/seashore environment. The site and the surrounding area offer excellent opportunities for a variety of low impact tourism activities such as bird watching, biking, hiking, beach combing sunbathing, swimming, snorkeling, diving, kayaking, catch-and-release fishing, and heritage tours. Another potential asset is the proximity of the site to the marine and geologic scientific research facility called the International Field Station & Research Center. The only fresh water creek in the Bahamas (Fresh Creek) is located a short distance from the site. Numerous Blue Holes, for which Andros Island is famous, are located near the site. The most famous is Ocean Blue Hole near Blanket Sound. Andros Island is also home to the third longest barrier reef in the world. An international airport is located at nearby Andros Town providing easy access to Nassau and Florida via air links.



1.01 The Sponsors of the competition, the Ministry of Tourism, of the Commonwealth of the Bahamas, and the InterAmerican Development Bank (1DB), invite Bahamian Architects to submit competitive designs for an Ecolodge, on a designated site on Andros Island, in accordance with the following conditions and instructions. In preparation of their design, competitors shall have access to all documents that make up this package.

1.02 The Ecolodge facility shall consist of the following components: a) Twenty (20) guest units with private bath (each unit to accommodate up to 4 people). b) A restaurant to seat 50 and a bar to accommodate 20 guests. c) Facilities for viewing I interpreting natural features, including the mangroves and the marine environment. d) Library and Interpretive resource center (including an area for naturalists to meet with groups of 6-8 guests before and/or after tour activities). Provide space for resource materials and computers, along with a small lab area for small group demonstrations and study. e) Craft outlet I retail store promoting the sale of locally produced items that represent the artistic capability of local residents and the rich heritage of Andros Island. f) Reception Area to accommodate 10-12 arriving and departing guests at any one time by water or land. Also provide public washroom shared with restaurant /bar. g) Dive facilities as well as space for canoe/kayak rentals. h) Ancillary facilities including (but not limited to) administration office, laundry, maintenance, sports equipment storage, general storage and such facilities to accommodate mechanical systems and other technologies recommended in the design. i) It is up to the Architect(s) to determine, in his/her/their best professional judgement, whether facilities are under one roof or separated into multiple structures.

1.03 The Proposed Site - The proposed site is on Andros Island and is further located, and defined by Exhibit A (To be issued under separate cover).

1.04 Estimate of Cost - While the competitors are not expected to submit exhaustive cost estimates, they are expected to include a statement of probable construction costs along with a generalized statement of life-cycle costs, and long term environmental benefits of the materials identified in the design.

1.05 Competitors should be aware that designs will be evaluated on both the short term and long-term costs related to projected environmental impacts. Cost estimates, however, should take into account the scale of the project, and reasonable assumptions regarding construction costs in the current and future tourism industry.

1.06 The word "Architect" shall mean any person who firstly, at the time of application for these conditions is ordinarily a resident of the Commonwealth of the Bahamas, including but not limited to, any architect who is employed by the government of the Commonwealth of the Bahamas, save except those architect(s), so employed, who sit on the Planning Committee for this Competition (or is otherwise employed in any matters related to this competition by the Ministry of Tourism); and secondly is a Registered Architect under the Professional Architects Act, 1994.

1.07 Every intending competitor must state his/her registration number at the time of application. Where application is made by a firm, the registration number(s) of the partner(s) in charge of the competition entry must be given.

1.08 Persons Ineligible - Without prejudice to any other provision contained in these General Conditions, no member of the sponsoring bodies, nor the Assessors, nor any other partner, or associate of either shall be eligible to compete or assist a competitor.


2.01 The following seven (7) Assessors have been appointed to advise on the conduct of the Competition, respond to questions during the competition, judge the entries and make the award, in accordance with Section 6 in these General Conditions: 1) Earlston McPhee (Chair) - Ministry of Tourism The Commonwealth of the Bahamas 2) Veljko Sikirica - InterAmerican Development Bank Washington, D.C. USA 3) Alicia Oxley - Ministry of Public Works The Commonwealth of the Bahamas 4) David Andersen RA - Ecotourism Design Consultant, The Andersen Group Architects Ltd. Minneapolis, MN, USA 5) James McGregor - Landscape Architect/ Ecotourism Planning Consultant, Ecoplan:Net Ltd., Ottawa, ONT, Canada 6) Ing. David Benjamin, MNAL – Architects/Heritage Manager Environmental Design Partners, Inc. R. Lauderdale, FL. USA 7) Jeremy McVean - Hotel General Manager Comfort Suites, Paradise Island, Bahamas


3.01 Clarifications - any questions which competitors wish to ask must be addressed to: Earlston McPhee Ministry of Tourism P0 Box N-3701 Market Plaza, Bay Street Nassau, Bahamas to arrive by hand on 1 May 2001 by 4:00 PM, or it by mail, post dated no later than 27 April 2001.

3.02 A Statement of response to questions will be circulated to all competitors at the Workshop on 3 May 2001, and shall form part of the competition brief.

3.03 Oral Questions will only be taken during the Workshop on 3 May 2001.



4.01 Anonymity - The intent of the Sponsors is to maintain anonymity of entries during judging.

4.02 Competitors are advised to keep copies of their submitted materials.

4.03 Each design and the report accompanying it must be sent in without name, mono, logo, or distinguishing mark of any kind. Entries shall be accompanied by the declaration form signed by the competitors and contained in the official envelope issued with these conditions, properly sealed, stating the design is hi/her/their own personal work, and that the drawings or other exhibits were prepared under his/her/their own supervision.

4.04 In the case of an association of architects formed for the purpose of entering this competition, all contributing parties shall be identified.

4.05 The successful Competitor must be prepared to satisfy the Assessors that he/she/they are the boa fide author(s) of the design submitted, and the work represents an original design concept responsive to the design parameters stated herein.

4.06 A number will be placed on each drawing and the report and envelope contained in each package, and the envelopes will not be opened until after the judging is completed and winners are determined

4.07 The design of each competitor shall be contained in a single package and shall be submitted no later than 4 pm on 15 June 2001 to: Office of Director of Public Works 3rd Floor Ministry of Public Works John F. Kennedy Drive PO Box N-8156 Nassau, Bahamas endorsed: Ecolodge Design Competition Entry

4.08 It is the Competitors' responsibility to wrap, send and/or deliver design submissions so they arrive intact and on time, and the Sponsors hereby specifically disclaim any responsibility for the loss of, or damage to designs in transit from competitors. It is strongly recommended that Competitors submit their work in such a manner as to assure that a record of the delivery is kept.

4.09 The costs incurred in the preparation and submission of any design shall be that of the Competitor and the Sponsors shall not, in any way whatsoever, be responsible for any such costs.

4.10 The Competitors understand that as a condition of entering this competition, they are bound to accept as final the decisions of the Assessors, and that they shall agree to hold harmless the Sponsors, the Assessors and the Commonwealth of the Bahamas for any harm or injury arising from participating in the competition.


5.01 A design shall be excluded from the competition by the Assessors for cause as defined in this document. The Assessors shall be the sole determiners of cause based on the criteria outlined in this document.


5.03 If the design, in the opinion of the Assessors, does not substantially meet the program for accommodations outlined in this document, it shall be excluded.

5.04 The design shall be excluded if it exceeds the limits of the site boundaries as defined in Exhibit A (Issued under separate cover).

5.05 If any of the conditions or instructions, other than suggestive character are disregarded, the design shall be excluded.

5.06 If a competitor discloses his/her/their Identity or improperly attempts to influence the decision of the assessors, the design shall be excluded.


6.01 The Winner of the competition shall be awarded the first prize of Twenty Thousand Dollars ($20,000.00), and a framed Ecolodge Design Competition Certificate from the Competition Sponsors: the Ministry of Tourism and the InterAmerican Development Bank (IDB)

6.02 The Second Place Winner shall receive a prize of Fifteen Thousand Dollars ($15,000.00), and a framed Ecolodge Design Competition Certificate from the Competition Sponsors: the Ministry of Tourism and the InterAmerican Development Bank (IDB).

6.03 The Third Place Winner shall receive a prize of Ten Thousand Dollars ($10,000.00), and a framed Ecolodge Design Competition Certificate from the Competition Sponsors: the Ministry of Tourism and the InterAmerican Development Bank (IDB).

6.04 The assessors, at their discretion, may elect to select up to two (2) designs for honorable mention in the order chosen.

6.05 If, in the opinion of the Assessors, none of the designs submitted are acceptable, based on the criteria outlined in this document, they may advise the Sponsors that no awards be granted, or that not all awards be granted. If such is the case the Assessors shall prepare a written report explaining their reasons for their actions.

6.06 A copy of the report referenced in 6.05, if issued, will be mailed to each Competitor.


7.01 The Assessors shall communicate their awards and their report to the Sponsors, who shall forthwith communicate the same to each competitor. Thereafter the Sponsors shall publish the Assessors' awards and their report.


8.01 The copyright in relationship to the design submitted by each competitor shall vest in that Competitor. The Sponsors shall, however, without the prior consent of any Competitor, be entitled to make such a use of each design as is specifically provided for in these General Conditions.

8.02 Without prejudice to any other provisions contained in these General Conditions, which confer certain rights upon the Sponsors to use the designs submitted, the Sponsors reserve the right, without obtaining the Competitor's prior consent, to use the designs submitted, for the following purposes:

8.03 To exhibit the designs submitted to the public or others.

8.04 To publish illustrations of any design, either separately or together, with other designs, with or without explanatory text.

8.05 To photograph or otherwise record any submission for archival and/or publicity purposes. Relevant information will be included in the archives, and may be released to or through various media including, but not limited to, internet web sites, television, radio and print publications.

8.06 To reproduce in any form, the submissions in any publication sponsored by or agreed to by the Sponsors. 8.07 No entrants, including those whose submissions may be chosen for use in any publication, or exhibitions by the Sponsors, shall receive any compensation for such use whatsoever.


9.01 All the designs submitted, and not subsequently excluded as set forth in this document, shall be exhibited with the names of the Competitors in a public space for a period of not less than two (2) weeks.

9.02 The exhibition shall take place no later than two (2) months after receipt by the Sponsors of the Assessors' Awards and report.

9.03 Each registered competitor shall be notified by the Sponsors, prior to the date of the exhibition, of the time and location of the exhibition.

9.04 As soon as reasonably possible after the exhibition, the Sponsors shall notify Competitors other that the three awarded the top awards, that the design may be picked up by the Competitors. Those designs, not picked up within three (3) weeks of such notification may be destroyed.

9.05 The three designs placed first, second and third, may by agreement between the Sponsors and such competitors be retained by the Sponsors for a further period, for the purpose of exhibition, publicity and Illustrations, subject to their eventual return to the authors by a date mutually agreed.

9.06 The Sponsors shall exercise reasonable care, but will not be responsible for loss and/or damage to drawings which may occur either in transit, or during exhibition, storage or packing.


10.01 Although it is the expectation of the Sponsors to receive realistic design concepts in response to this competition, the Sponsors are not required to build the winning entries. In the future, however, the Sponsors have the right to execute the design, and may or may not execute the design with additional services provided by the Competitor for reasonable professional fees.

10.02 If the Sponsors elect to construct the design with the assistance of another Architect, the Sponsors shall hold harmless and protect the Competitor from any future legal action resulting from the adaptation of the design by others. Acceptance, then does not constitute any liability where the architect is not asked to or refuses to participate in the future implementation of the design concept.

10.03 Any dispute regarding any possible implementation of the design shall be referred to an arbitrator to be mutually agreed upon by the President of the Institute of Bahamian Architects and the Ministry of Tourism.



1.01 A site plan has been included with these conditions and instructions (See Exhibit A to be issues under separate cover). This plan indicates general site conditions and the relationship to the surrounding properties and surrounding natural features.

1.02 It is significant that the Competitors recognize that the site is located within the boundaries of a proposed Marine Replenishment Area, and adjacent to the Blue Hole Reserve, and the Ecolodge is ultimately intended to operate as a concession within the protected area.

1.03 It is also important, in the context of the protected area, that facilities for access from both water and land be considered. It should be assumed that most guests will arrive via water (transported from the Stafford Creek public dock located adjacent to the International Field Station & Research Center.

1.04 Competitors are encouraged to visit the site to assure they fully understand site conditions and ecological characteristics


2.01 Competitors shall follow standards required in the Bahamas Building Code, Second Editions - 1987.

2.02 Competitors are encouraged to consider design guidelines set forth in the workshop scheduled as part of the competition, as well as any additional independent research they may elect to do on ecotourism guidelines,standards and Ecolodge design criteria.


3.01 Competitors shall submit no more than ten (10) sheets of 36 x 42" size, permanently mounted on lightweight board or card. Submittals may be in black and white or color. It should be noted that all graphics should take into account that they may be published in a reduced form to fit a A4 (8 1/2" x 11") format. Models will not be accepted, however photographs of models may be used on presentation boards. All drawings should include a graphic scale and plans shall include North arrows as well.

3.02 The drawings shall include: (A) Vicinity plan at an appropriate scale indicating relationships route of travel between the site and the surrounding areas including the ecolodge, the proposed protected areas, surrounding communities, public dock, research center, roads and airport and other such features deemed important in the development of an integrated ecotourism product. (B) Site Analysis (Scale 1/32" = 1'-O") indicating site sensitivities, sun path, prevailing winds, an other issues I opportunities superimposed over site. (C) Site Plan (Scale 1/16' =1'-O") indicating buildings, ancillary facilities, site circulation, and natural features. (D) Floor Plans (Scale 1/4" = 1' - 0") Including furnishings and equipment to scale (E) A graphic representation of renewable energy and/or alternative technology solutions (F) Building I Site Section(s) minimum of one (Scale 1/4" = 1'-0") indicating relationship of buildings to topography and including a minimum of one (1) scale human figure to graphically illustrate scale. (G) Exterior Building Elevations (Scale 1/4" = 1-0") minimum one each for each significant building structure and/or Perspective drawing(s) adequate to describe the exterior character of the proposed design and how it is integrated into the natural environment. Include scale human figures. (H) Interior perspectives (minimum of two) of a typical guest accommodations and of the restaurant (include scale human figures) (I) At the sole discretion of the Competitor, he/she/they may elect to include any other graphic exhibits that may best describe the design, such as: Computer renderings superimposed on photographs of the site, photographs of models, axonometric drawings, sectional perspectives, diagrams, or charts.


4.01 The projects submitted must be supported by a typewritten text of no more than ten (10) - A4 (81/2" x 11") size pages The narrative shall address the following: (A) Design Approach and Philosophy (B) A summary of unique project features that define the design as an Ecolodge, including, but not limited, to how the project is expected to have a low impact on the environment, contribute to conservation, interpretation, environmental education and provide economic benefits to the local community. (C) Approach to construction (including logistics to minimize environmental impacts during construction) (D) Anticipated mechanical systems, energy sources, septic and water treatment (E) Anticipated operating strategies to minimize environmental impacts (F) Description of proposed finishes and building materials, with an emphasis on environmental benefits, and a brief discussion of life-cycle costs. (G) Estimate of Probable Construction Costs.

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