The Valley's AEC Community Gives Back Once More at the 7th Annual Canstruction Competition



The Valley’s 7th Annual Canstruction Design-Build Competition returned to the West Building of the Phoenix Convention Center in March, with 11 competing teams comprised of 29 different companies within the architecture, engineering and construction industry.

The goal: to design and built structures using more than 45,000 cans of food. At the end of the two-week event, all food and cash donations were donated to benefit St. Mary’s Food Bank Alliance.

Canstruction has become one of the largest single-event donations for the Food Bank, with more than 52,000 cans used to construct incredibly imaginative designs. All the non-perishable items used helped fill the more than 30,000 emergency food boxes St. Mary’s distributes into the community each month.

The international competition is hosted by the Arizona Chapter of the Society for Marketing Professional Services (SMPS) under the auspices of the Society for Design Administration (SDA).

The committee of AEC industry volunteers begins planning the event every fall and relies on sponsorship money and in-kind donations from the community to execute the event. Teams who participate are responsible for acquiring their own canned food.

Many teams solicit donations from local businesses, project clients and fellow employees to help cover the costs of their structures. The average structure uses approximately 3,900 cans. This year, the structure from DWL Architects + Planners entitled “ICan….sCAn,” was constructed using 6,158 cans of tuna.

Awards in five categories were handed out at the awards mixer held recently at My Big Fat Greek Restaurant at Arizona Center.

Award winners included the Juror’s Favorite Be “The Voice” of Hunger, designed and constructed by the team of Deutsch Architecture Group, Transact Commercial Furnishings, Jokake Construction, Benson Systems and JLC Consulting Group.

The People’s Choice winner, chosen by the public via social media and ballots located at the build site, was the team of HDR, Sundt and CH2M Hill.

Additional award winners included DWL Architects + Planners for Best Use of Labels; SmithgroupJJR/DPR Construction for Best Meal; Corporate Interior System, Gensler, SPS+Architects and Holder Construction for Structural Ingenuity; Honorable Mention went to the team of HKS, Kitchell and CCRD.

CANstruction not only raises awareness of the issue of hunger but provides food to fight the problem on the front lines.

For more information on the event or how your firm can participate visit Photos and video from this year’s event can also be found via social media at


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