The annual Indiana Hardwood Lumbermen’s Association (IHLA) competition requires second-year architecture students in the Estopinal College of Architecture and Planning (ECAP) to flex their creative design skills in a design assignment that considers the innovative use of hardwood within the project. This year, the challenge is to design “A Centre for Film and Cinema” that would be situated in the heart of downtown Muncie, Indiana, at 500 South Mulberry Street. The design specifications encompass not only the incorporation of wood as the primary construction material but also the inclusion of a designated space for vertical movement, all while adhering to safety principles like ADA accessibility, multiple exit routes, and fire escape stairs, among other considerations.

The students spend six weeks studying wood’s properties and investigating its design potential. Eighty second-year students heartily engaged in the competition, displaying their project board and model in the hallways of ECAP for review by upper-level students and faculty. Seventeen projects made it to the finalist list for review by an outside jury. 

The college’s student design competition is graciously supported by the Indiana Hardwood Lumbermen’s Association. IHLA provides funding for the competition in support of site visits and scholarships. This time around, Frank Miller Lumber Company in Union City, Indiana, cordially hosted a tour of their facilities for the ARCH 202 students and their faculty. Ball State University’s Department of Architecture is proud and grateful for its continuing partnership with IHLA. 



Joshua Bard, Associate Professor, Carnegie Mellon University
Stephen Dargo, Adjunct Associate Professor, NYC College of Technology
Sophie Determann, Associate Architect, HUT Architecture
Keith Peiffer, Assistant Professor, Oklahoma State University
Ebrahim Poustinchi, Assistant Professor, Kent State University
Steve Zabel, Design Director, Meticulous Design + Architecture 


FIRST PLACE ($1,250) 

Hannah Ruhe, “Atlas: Step into New Worlds”
Faculty mentor: Richard Tursky 


SECOND PLACE ($1,000) 

Travis Sullivan, “Ethereal: Cinema Meets Gaming”
Faculty mentor: Richard Tursky 



Alyssa Vivo, “Journey”
Faculty mentor: Sean Burns 



Maxwell Harris, “Stone of Hearts”
Faculty mentor: Sean Burns 


Elise Matney, “Escapism”
Faculty mentor: James Kerestes 


FINALISTS (also jury reviewed) 

Audreyana Antos
Brooke Bailey
Lillian Brown
Kayla Desper
Beatrice Dirienzo
Clay Fox
Ryan Haggenjos
Maxwell Harris
Jenna Krieg
Lainie Lipp
Elise Matney
Hannah Ruhe
Ella Schollenbruch
Travis Sullivan
Lindsey Thole
Alyssa Vivo
Jasmine Yoder