What & How:

1. What is the overall goal of this event?
The goal of the Festival is to give members of the community the opportunity to create, test, and respond to exciting new prototypes that help connect neighborhoods and people along Market Street. This is a groundbreaking opportunity to let the community help determine what should be on Market Street – and other streets in San Francisco – by letting us know what works, what doesn’t and why. The Market Street Prototyping Festival will create a series of temporary public installations, designed and fabricated by members of the community and beyond, along Market Street sidewalks, linking five ‘Festival Districts’ together as one.

Over the course of three days, people will have the opportunity to see, touch, hear and interact with the installations, or prototypes. In communicating their experiences while learning about Market Streets’ unique place as a key commercial corridor in San Francisco, they will help further the conversation of urban design while engaging with each other and the community.

2. How much of Market Street will physically be involved?
The Festival will run the length of Market Street for approximately two miles, from the Embarcadero to Van Ness Avenue. Installations will be located on portions of the sidewalks, known as “Street Life Zones.”  All installations will be located outdoors and in the public right of way . Each District will devote one block within its boundaries to hosting installations.

3. What are the Festival Districts and what is their role?
The five districts, Civic Center, Central Market, Retail Heart, Financial District, and Embarcadero, represent the distinct neighborhoods touching the Festival. Each district has its own District Design Captain, an industry or design leader who will serve as a mentor to the selected design teams throughout the design and build-out process. In addition, each district has a Community Cohorts which is made up of local community members and stakeholders.

The Cohort will advise the design teams and provide insight throughout the design and development process to ensure that the needs and ideas from each district are incorporated into the final installation. An installation can be designed for a specific District, or will be placed in one that is determined best fits the design.

More info on Festival Districts can be found HERE.


Application Requirements:

1. What are the key goals of a successful submission?
The goal of the Market Street Prototype Festival is to improve the Market Street experience while attracting public participation and community engagement. A successful submission, referred to as a prototype, should focus on these goals in any number of ways, including, but not limited to:

  • Reflect the diversity of the neighborhood;
  • Invite pedestrians to relax and enjoy their environment;
  • Encourage people to interact with each other in positive ways;
  • Increase the enjoyment of time spent along Market Street;
  • Improve the local navigation experience for residents and tourists alike;
  • Educate passers-by on the history and uniqueness of the neighborhood;
  • Make Market Street more welcoming to a broader range of people; and
  • Improve the aesthetic experience of Market Street, buildings, and landscape.

2. What are the additional criteria of a successful submission?
In addition to achieving one or more of the above goals, a successful prototype should also meet the following criteria:

  • Impact the local neighborhood in a positive way;
  • Encourage the participation of/partnership with local residents;
  • Be resilient and durable for regular use and wear for three days;
  • Be sustainable and environmentally friendly; and
  • Be relatively scalable or easily replicable.

3. What are the constraints of a successful submission?
Though we encourage entrants to stretch their imaginations in submitting prototypes, there are some constraints and limitations:

  • Must be able to withstand many testings over the three day festival period.
  • Project dimensions must be less than or equal to w12’ x d12’ x h12’.
  • Maximum power required is 110/120V // maximum 1500 watts.
  • Maximum noise emission at or below 50 dBA at a distance of 10 feet from source.
  • No fire, pyrotechnics, or other elements that may create a public hazard.
  • Prototype cannot be attached to SF Metropolitan Transportation Agency (MTA) zones (bus stops, railings, benches, advertising kiosks), fire zones (hydrants), or public utilities (water, power, sewer).

4. What are some examples of a successful submission?
The Festival encourages applicants to think broadly, and the guidelines for prototypes are intentionally open to individual interpretation in order to foster exciting and innovative submissions. However, examples of some projects that would make successful submissions can be found HERE.

5. Can the final project cost more to complete than the $2,000 stipend provided?
Yes. While any monies spent above $2,000 must be supplied by the applicant, an installation can be estimated to cost more than $2,000 at the time of submission. However, the submission will not be chosen, nor will the final design be judged, on the total expense or cost incurred. We do not consider the cost of the final design to necessarily improve the value, quality or innovation of final designs.

6. Can I submit multiple entries?
Yes. Applicants are encouraged to submit as many great ideas as they have for the festival.

7. What kind of images can I submit?
All materials must be submitted online. Materials should convey the intent and goals of the prototype as well as provide the judges with a clear understanding of the proposal. Photographs, video, and other visuals should be included. In order for an application to be complete, all materials should meet the following:

  • Text files must be legible and orientated correctly for viewing on a screen.
  • Image files must be in focus.
  • Audio quality must be legible.
  • JPEG, GIF must be 5MB maximum size.
  • PDFs must be low format.
  • DOC, DOCX, PDFs must be no larger than 20MB.
  • Images of two-or-three dimensional work should be photographed flat against a surface (wall or table) with even, natural lighting (when possible), against a plain, neutral-colored background, and in sharp focus.

8. Can I submit a pre-existing project I believe would be a good fit for this festival?
Yes. Projects that have already been conceived or constructed may be submitted as long as they meet the goals and criteria of the Festival. Applicants must also be open to adjusting the project to meet community feedback. However, professional public installations that are already installed elsewhere in San Francisco or other cities are not eligible.

9. Can people submit a proposal that has items for sale? Can my final installation be sold?
A prototype may contain interactive elements such as items for sale.  The overall intent of the prototype should not be a commercial enterprise or to recoup expenses incurred.  Upon completion of the Festival, if your prototype is not selected for permanent installation, it may be sold.

10. If I have questions during the process, who do I contact?
For any questions regarding the Festival or application process, please email info@marketstreetprototyping.org or contact Gina Simi at 415. 575.9119.

11. What is the submission deadline?
All submissions must be received by October 10th, 2014.


Selection Process:

1. How will my project get assigned to a particular district if I don’t specify which one I want?
An applicant may design a prototype for one of the five Festival Districts. While every effort will be made to place final prototypes in requested districts, some may be placed in a district where the judges believe it will make the most impact or is compatible with the area. Some winning prototypes may be neighborhood-specific, and will be displayed in that district. If your entry is specific to a particular district, please be sure to specify in your submission.

2. Who is on the jury?
The jury will be composed of a panel of experts from a variety of fields, including community organizations, design firms, technology companies, and government leaders.

3. What’s the jurying process?
The review process will be conducted in two rounds. The first round will be to ensure that applications are complete and that submitted materials are of a size and quality that can be evaluated. The second round will evaluate the content and quality of the application. Each prototype will be reviewed against the goals and criteria of the Festival, the materials and installation components, the feasibility of installation, and its appropriateness to a particular Festival District (or districts). There will not be interviews or rankings. Upon completion of the jurying process, each applicant will be contacted with the final decision.


Winning Applications/Applicants:

1. What do winning submissions receive?
In addition to hands-on mentorship and guidance by the District Captain, each winning application will receive a $2,000 stipend to finalize the design, create, and install the prototype. All prototypes will be featured on the Festival’s website and some may be used in marketing materials. Each work will be featured along Market Street for the 3 day Festival, allowing for exposure and recognition by the community and city.

2. What happens to my prototype after the festival?
The Market Street Prototype Festival is a temporary three day event. Each applicant is responsible for dismantling and removing the final installation once the Festival is over.

3. If selected, who will assist?
Each selected project will be assigned to a Festival District, which will determine the geographic location of your installation as well as the District Captain and Community Cohort you will work with to realize your project.

Design Captains. Each District has been assigned a Design Captain – an industry leader in design that will help mentor the project teams in their District and advise on the design, fabrication, installation; and documentation of the prototype. The Design Captain will also be designing and producing their own installation, which will anchor each particular District during the Festival. Each team will meet with their corresponding Captain approximately once per month during the final design and installation phases; however, they will be available to answer questions at other times.

Community Cohorts. Each District also has a Community Cohort made up of local leaders and key stakeholders who will act as a voice for your District. These Cohorts will help inform the design process and ensure that project teams incorporate needs and ideas from their local communities.

4. If selected, how will the design-to-installation process go?
Once selected, there will be a three-stage process from designing and fabrication of the prototype to installation of the final project. The first stage will consist of a series of design reviews where each team will work with their Design Captains to flesh out details and address any issues. There will be additional reviews and feedback from the Community Cohorts and other officials affiliated with the Festival. The second phase involves moving from design to prototype where the installation will be fabricated, tested, and finalized. Feedback on materials, tools, and functionality will be provided to each team. The third and final phase consists of the installation of the final product and the Festival itself.

5. Will the Festival help me store my project?
Generally, storage will not be provided. However, if lack of storage would be preventative to submitting an application, please contact us at info@marketstreetprototyping.org and we will work with applicants on a case-by-case basis to procure a storage facility during the design process.

6. Will my project end up a permanent fixture on Market Street?
There may be some installations that will be selected for additional viewing, either as another temporary installation or as a permanent installment in the City. Those installations that are chosen will be identified and the applicants will work with the City on the necessary permitting and processes.