General questions

What is Walltopia?

Walltopia is the world’s leading climbing wall manufacturer. Founded in Bulgaria in 1998, to date the company has built more than 230 000 sq.m. of climbing walls in 50 countries on 6 continents.

Besides climbing walls and safety equipment, since 2012 Walltopia expands its portfolio of products and services towards the much bigger market of the amusement and entertainment industry. Now the company offers interactive fun walls, low and high rope courses, theming solutions and adventure hubs concepts. Currently the company employs more than 300 professionals and has the largest production facility within the industry.

Walltopia has sales offices in the USA, Canada, Austria, UK, Germany, Russia, Pacific Asia. The Head office is in Sofia, Bulgaria.

What is Geome3x?

This is the most popular style of all! Endless possibilities of design are provided by the three dimensional multi-faceted plywood. The flat planes allow a greater T-nut density, which means a greater variety of route setting options. This makes Geome3x plywood the most economically efficient solution, providing everything a gym needs.

Geome3x can be manufactured for both indoor and outdoor use, for top rope, lead or bouldering walls and is suitable for all climbing skill levels.

Geome3x is available in a wide choice of colors and it can be carved to achieve micro relief.

Is it possible to send further questions from other emails, different from the one we used for the registration?

No, it’s not a problem to send questions from other emails as well.

What is the purpose of creating modular system – extended variety of combinations during designing the wall or possibility of changing an existing module with another one once the wall is installed?

Extended variety during design is more important than the possibility to change modules after installation is finished, although the system will allow both.
The main purpose behind the concept is that by having standard elements all gyms in the world will be able to replicate and share climbing routes. Climbing routes actually define and shape the positive experience of a climber. Thus having the possibility of sharing the best routes in the world will be of major impact to all climbing gyms.

Jury members

How did you choose the jury members?

Well, this was hard. We looked through a large list of climbers, route setters, gym owners, etc. We try to keep the jury small but at the end they might be close to 20. We look for climbing experience and influence in the community. And we wanted to have a diverse team- not only Americans or French, for instance.

When would you publish the full list of jury members?

This won’t be publish up until the very end of the contest. We prefer announcing the jury one by one as that way they have more individual attention and that help us keep the word about the contest alive.

Technical assignment

I can’t find the technical assignment. How can I have it?

To have the detailed technical assignment you have to sign up first. Then a member of our team will contact you back shortly and will send you the tech details. And then you will be ready to start designing!

Who wrote the technical assignment?

The technical assignment has been developed with Walltopia Head of Design & Architecture Department along with Walltopia Chief Operations Officer based on their expertise with the Harmonized system to date and taking into consideration design and materials features and properties.

In the technical assignment is stated that the design must consist of flat surfaces. Does that mean that each premade module is flat, or the premade modules can have a complex geometry, consisting of a number of flat surfaces, similar to the Walltopia Harmonized system?

It could be numerous flat surfaces. This requirement just stresses out that we are not looking for any curved surfaces since the modules are going to be produced from flat plywood panels.

Concerning the submission requirements, do you have a preferred layout for the drawings?

No, there isn’t any preferred layout. Most likely the designs are going to be reviewed on big 42”+ screens. Please bare in mind that the most important part is the 3D model in SketchUp.

Can you please elaborate on the corners mentioned in the assignment? To which corners do you refer?

This part of the assignment concerns modules designed specially for 90 degree corners.

What should the distance between T-nuts be?

Usually the T-nuts are 36/sq.m. However, they are not subject to the contest and they do not need to be included in the panels.

How should the projects be packed in case they are sent by post or other shipping method?

The projects should be sent digitally, so there is no need for packing. The name of the team or individual(s) should be stated. For more information on the matter click here.

In which format should the projects be exported?

The file requirements are stated in the rules, section VII.Submission Requirements

Do you guarantee that copyrights will not be violated after announcing the winners?

It is stated in the rules, section IX. Copyright that the projects are protected under the Bulgarian Copyright Law.

How is the prize pool divided between categories?

It is well explained in the rules, section IV. Prizes.

Within the rules of the top rope walls, it states that there “must also be a 15m option, of which the first 12m must be the same as the 12m counterpart”
Would this be, conclusively, counted as two separate panels? Or merely the same panel with two options (12m/15m)?
The reason for asking is to not bust the 30 panel limit!

The top 3m extension will not be counted as an additional module.

Must the three meter extension be an option for ALL panels? Or a select few at our discretion?

The extension must be an option for all panels.

Is it Š¼andatory term to make model in SketchUp? Can we sent model in any another modeling program if we make it like video or pictures? Or you need exacly model file?

It is mandatory to send a SketchUp file as a minimum and this will be the most important file that will be compared between the competition entries. You can model your design in any software, but in the end you need to import it in SketchUp and send us the skp file. SketchUp in fact is the most popular software used in the climbing walls industry, and it is what we also send to our clients every day.
As long as you keep the minimum requirements, you are free to send any additional files (e.g. videos, pictures, drawings). If you send additional 3d models in software different than SketchUp, there is a high probability for us to not have the same software or the same version. For example, we do not own a license for ArchiCAD, and we do not have any viewers for ArchiCAD files installed on our computers.

Is it acceptable creating modularity not only by horizontal axis but also by vertical? Should the height of the modules be equal to the height of the wall itself?

No, we are looking for horizontal modularity. The only exception is the possibility for extending the 12m rope walls to 15m by adding extra panels.

Is it acceptable the modular system to be assembled by modules with different widths ( all multiple of 1.2 m)?

Yes, it is acceptable.

Can the panels used be double sided i.e. can both front and back be used reversibly or can the same panel be used upside down in a different setting (keeping the front face same) i.e by rotating the panel 180 degrees?

Neither can be done, since the outcome of these actions will be a different climbing wall design.

Do all modules have to reach from the ground up to 12m/15m? Or is it possible to use add-ons (i.e. overhangs), that can be mounted on other modules?

All modules must be from the ground to 12 /15m. The only allowed add-on vertically is the one that is mounted on top of the 12m wall and extends it to 15m.

Is it technically possible and/or allowed to flip a module so that bottom becomes top and vice versa? This can greatly contribute to the variations of the walls.

If you flip it, it will be counted as a separate module. From functional point of view, flipping usually leads to compromises with the wall angle in at least one of its positions.

In the description it is asked that within the set of modules there should be parts that can go around obstacles. Besides corners (convex and concave), are there other obstacles that should be dealt with in the design? For examples windows, entrance ways, fire escapes-doors, staircases that come trough the wall?

You are free to propose any additional modules that you find suitable. There is no specific requirement for such special modules.

Do the corner modules also have to take into account a fixed width (i.e. multiple of 1.2m for both sides)?

Yes, corners should also be multiple of 1.2m

Is there a maximum to the overhang of the wall that can for technical reasons be supported? For example x meters that the top of the wall can surpass the ground-base?

From structural point of view, there isn’t any limit. Limits are rather coming from functional point of view, and it is up to the competition participants where to set those limits and what a maximum overhang must be.