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April 20, 2018

Glenn Cheng

Team SDI chose the Purple Martin, whose numbers in Ontario are on the decline, likely due to the rapid urbanization of the region. The Purple Martin lives in colonies of individual nesting units, preferring man-made housing located in open areas and with a high vantage point.

Our conceptual design objectives, some of which were beyond the contest mandate, were: to create a template for a “Purple Martin Condo” that can be easily replicated as a modular kit; to use open spaces in cites (school yards, parks, beaches) as habitats; to engage with school boards to develop a practical hands-on workshop for students to learn about the Purple Martin, thus nurturing environmental stewardship amongst youth; and to create open source software and solar powered devices to monitor occupancy, assisting in colony maintenance.

The solution, designed to be mounted on a tall post in an open area (such as a school yard), is a stack of individual optimally sized units configured to allow the condo to expand upward as the colony grows. The staggered form allows each nest to have a perch and at the top level shelter from rain is provided by a solar panel (which powers the occupancy monitors). The condo is constructed from recycled scrap wood. 

The competition was judged by a representative from the David Suzuki Foundation, and our entry was awarded First Prize. 

© 2024 SDI Interior Design & Project Coordination

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