Structural Concrete Competition 2021: submission requirements

The submission is to comprise four components:

Conceptual design report

A maximum of 30 pages, of either 1.5 line spaced text in a maximum 11pt font, or neatly hand written in black ink, which should include:

  • An appraisal of two distinct and viable design solutions in structural concrete for the building, together with their associated column/wall layouts. The appraisals should include sketches with supporting notes outlining the intended load transfer mechanisms, framing and stability functions, and the construction methodology.
  • An evaluation of the merits and disadvantages of the two solutions. The evaluation should identify significant differences such as cost or buildability between the two alternatives, and make a recommendation in favour of one solution.
  • A description of the structural solution adopted for the slabs and a rationale for the selection. 
  • An outline specification for the structural concrete and reinforcing materials to be used.
  • A method statement for a safe construction procedure for the building.
  • A statement on the robustness of the building to avoid disproportionate collapse.

Verification of structural viability

The verification of structural viability of the selected scheme should be demonstrated in Appendices to the conceptual design report to make up the balance of the report. (The maximum total length of the design report, sustainability report plus Appendix is 60 pages A4.)

Appendix 1 should contain sufficient design calculations by hand to establish the form and size of all structural elements for the chosen scheme. Entrants should decide how best to convey this information within the space constraints imposed.

Calculations for individual elements should enable a checker to clearly understand their contribution to the strength and stability of the whole structure, and the load paths assumed. Hence, if computer output is presented, validation by (approximate) hand calculations is also required. Consideration should be given to performance at both serviceability and ultimate limit states.


A3 drawings should be included. Drawings may be prepared using appropriate CAD software, or by hand. In either case, notes and dimensions should not be smaller than the equivalent of an 11pt font.

Drawings should be to an appropriate scale. Drawings should show the following:

i) General arrangement of the foundation scheme;
ii) General arrangement of the lower ground floor
iii) General arrangement of the ground floor
iv) General arrangement of a typical upper floor
v) Section through the building
vi) Section through the retaining wall
vii) Detail A shown on Figure 2 (see brief) 

Sustainability report

The Council require that the building be BREEAM ''Excellent'. You have been asked to prepare a short report (maximum three single-sided pages) for the team. This should detail which aspects of sustainability the structural engineer can influence and how your design has improved the sustainability of the project.