THE CONCRETE BOAT MAY HAVE SUNK, but many of the 47 other “floating machines” launched Monday, Sept. 13, by second-year architecture students demonstrated the seaworthiness of an impressive array of materials. For instance Lakahi was made of foam core board, which proved a winning formula. The fastest boat in a two-hour regatta held by the students at Marina del Rey’s Mother’s Beach, it was one of two selected by USC architecture professors as outstanding. Lakahi was designed, made and launched by architecture students Jerilyn Itamoto and Clara Kim. Sharing the “outstanding” honor was CubaZen, a paddle-wheel boat by Fabricio Espasande and Larry Wong. Panda Express, a boat made of bamboo and Saran Wrap, was one of four entries that won an award for excellence. (Pictured below right are creators Selin Hovnanian and Yishan Lo.) For the annual event, which began three years ago, students are given two weeks and $120 to design and build a seaworthy craft. The exercise is designed to help them study buoyancy, water displacement, methods of movement, structure, water tightness and methods of construction. Designers of the concrete boat, which was named La Feuille de Portland Victor, won the event’s “booby prize” for having risen to “a great challenge.”
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