The Bench: Baltimore Urban Design Film Contest


The AIABaltimore Urban Design Committee has launched a film competition exploring the concept of benches and ‘seatable areas’ within Baltimore city. Submissions must be an original short video (5 minutes or under) on the theme of benches, exploring the impact of places of pause and rest on Baltimore’s built environment.  In the compressed timespan the short film offers, entrants are challenged to investigate an aspect of how we live and how urban furniture shapes us, our communication with built landscape, and Baltimore public spaces.

Selected films and popular voting will be viewed at a short-film festival on October 22, 2016 as part of Doors Open Baltimore.

Happy film-making and good luck!


The competition is open to high school and college students as well as amateur and professional filmmakers. Architects, urban designers, planners and landscape architecture professionals are encouraged to submit a film.

AIABaltimore Urban Design Committee members and Festival organizers may submit a film, but are ineligible for prizes.  


Only contestants who register will be allowed to submit a film. If your film is selected, the information that you supply will be used on our website and festival guide. You are responsible to make sure this information is correct and ready for print.

Awards are given only to those listed on the submission packet. 

Registrant(s) under 18 at the time of submission must also submit a signed Parent/Guardian Consent Form.

Registration will be closed on September 24, 2016. Contestants will need to fill out and submit the Festival Online Registration Form.


Registration is free for students. A nominal fee is required for AIA/BAF members and all other entrants. Pay using Paypal below.

Registration Payment


Film submission instructions will be sent after registration.

Only contestants who are registered before September 24, 2016 are eligible to submit their entries. Submission will be closed on October 10, 2016.

Contestants will need to fill out all the required forms and include the web-link to their entries based on the submission requirements.


Short films will be pre-screened by contest and festival organizers. Pre-screened films will be judged on creativity, originality, quality, overall impact and responsiveness to the goals of this festival. Selected films will be honored and presented at the festival. Festival attendees will be eligible to participate in popular voting for the following categories:

  1. Golden Bench Award (Best picture/film about a city bench)
  2. Best Cinematography (Best camera and lighting in a film)
  3. Best High School Student Film
  4. Best College Student Film
  5. Best Adult Amateur or Professional Film


Questions and inquiries about contest rules can be emailed to

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