A Dubai-based developer has invited students to come up with winning concepts for the chance to win ,000.

KOA is seeking fresh blood to put their stamp on its first major project, boutique residential scheme Canvas.

Running throughout the first semester of 2017, the contest is open to members of Canadian University Dubai (CUD) who are studying art and design-related subjects.


KOA’s CEO and founder, Mohammed Zaal, said: “The judges and I cannot wait to see the final work of the students of Canadian University Dubai and have no doubt that we will be presented with some innovative solutions to our competition’s criteria.


“KOA is an aspirational project to provide people their dream homes, working spaces and communities, and we hope that the aspirations of Dubai’s young and creative talent is demonstrated in the finished products of their submissions.”

Canvas, KOA’s first development, has been strategically designed to foster creativity and collaboration, incorporating a coworking space,nursery and amphitheatre.


Entrants to KOA University Design Challenge have three tasks from which to choose. The first is to extend the co-working space into the outdoor common area in a way that both incorporates the design of the indoor space and complements and enhances the natural environment. It must also demonstrate resilience against Dubai’s hot summer climate. The second competition option is to design bilingual signage that identifies the units in a cohesive manner. Finally, students can design a climbing frame or similar play structure for the Canvas on-site daycare centre.

The judging panel comprises three people who are involved in the Canvas development. They include Tarik Zaharna, the scheme’s lead architect and the founder and director of T.ZED Architects, Mohammed Zaal and award-winning landscape architect Kamelia Zaal.

The name of the winner will be announced no later than 12 April 2017