January 26, 2021

Washington, DC – January 26, 2021 – The American Institute of Architecture Students (AIAS) is proud to announce the launch of a brand new competition, Parklet Design, in partnership with Vectorworks, Inc., a global design and BIM software developer. A parklet is an extension of the sidewalk into the street, exchanging curbside road space for additional public gathering space. Parklets repurpose, activate, and expand public space in an innovative way, creating space for all people. Members will be required to submit their parklet designs via Instagram before March 1, 2021. 

Make sure to follow AND tag the AIAS National Office and Vectorworks on Instagram – @aiasorg and @vectorworks . Use the following hashtags: #AIASparklet and #Vectorworksparklet At the close of the competition, the jury will select three winners from the submissions. Competition winner announcement March 2021.


  • Dimensions: All parklets are required to include four-foot setbacks on either side to buffer the parklet from adjacent on-street parking spaces and driveways. With standard setbacks, the dimensions of a parklet would be six (6) feet by 12 feet in one parking space or six (6) feet by 32 feet in two adjacent spaces. 
  • The parklet must have a physical edge to buffer the street. This can take the form of planters, railing, cabling, or some other appropriate buffer. 
  • Maintain a visual connection to the street. The parklet’s design should maintain a visual connection to the street and should not obstruct views. Walls, fencing, and other vertical elements, should be transparent (not opaque) and cannot exceed 42 inches. Any enclosed parklets with canopies cannot exceed 84 inches in overhead clearance and should not obstruct line of sight. 
  • The top of the parklet platform must be flush with the sidewalk and comply with Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). 
  • A minimum 36-inch clear width entryway to the parklet must be maintained, without vertical protrusions, at all times to comply with ADA Standards.


Plan showing parklet location and context AND one elevation OR a perspective render.


You must have uploaded your designs and renderings to Instagram by 11:59 pm on March 1, 2021.


The winning cash prizes are as follows: 

1st Place: $500 

2nd Place: $250 

3rd Place: $100 



The American Institute of Architecture Students is a non-profit, student-run organization dedicated to programs, information and resources on issues critical to architecture and the experience of architectural education. For more information, visit www.aias.org or call (202) 808-0075.


Vectorworks, the Parklet Design Competition partner, is dedicated to supporting the next generation of designers. To this end, students anywhere in the world can download a free copy of Vectorworks software, and academic institutions can apply for the lab donation program. Learn more about Vectorworks’ educational offerings at vectorworks.net/education.