On The Way | Truck Driver’s Rest Stop


Posted on: January 15th, 2022

On The Way | Truck Driver’s Rest Stop

On the way is an architecture competition to design a rest stop for about 100 truck drivers on Indian Highways. The drivers of these large vehicles transverse the nation on its highways delivering goods between different locations. Spending days away from their homes and families, they tend to drive long hours on even longer roads with little to no rest. These lengthy journeys are further made difficult with the lack of rest infrastructure for these drivers.

Fig: 1 – Truck drivers gathered around their trucks during their leisure time. (Credits: Sightsavers)


Even today, nearly 67% of India’s trade and transportation relies heavily on land transportation via trucks.

The drivers of these large vehicles transverse the nation on its highways delivering goods between different locations. Spending days away from their homes and families, they tend to drive long hours on even longer roads with little to no rest. These lengthy journeys are further made difficult with the lack of rest infrastructure for these drivers.

They spend hours of the day and night travelling, stopping only occasionally for meals or to stretch their legs at small roadside establishments. Moreover, the lack of space for rest means that most drivers sleep in their vehicles.

In a country that depends on these drivers for trade and transportation, can we design opportunities that allow these essential workers to rest and recuperate, thereby easing their journeys?

Fig: 2 – Most of the time, truck drivers end up eating at dhabas or on road sides due to lack of hygienic eating places on truck routes.  (Credits: Quora, Inc. 2021)


While being essential to trade and transportation nearly 84% of truckers are dissatisfied with their profession primarily owing to the lack of security and safety amenities on the roads. The most abundantly available recourse to these drivers is ‘Dhabas’ (roadside eateries) that are usually small spaces run on modest economical means. With time some of these dhabas expand and grow but they also begin to cater to higher economic strata. Since most drivers come from humble backgrounds it is thus important to create cost-effective solutions that welcome them.

Another challenge is the various ways in which rest manifests for these drivers who tend to travel for a variety of distances in a range of different time constraints. Rest for these drivers comes in three primary modalities – Pit stops, for quick breaks and relief; Stops for Meals, and finally stops to sleep. All 3 cases are essential to ease the journey yet few spaces allow for all three activities, in the specific economic niche.

Fig: 3 – There are very minimal rest stop options for truck drivers on the go, and they end up sleeping at roadside eateries or in their own trucks. (Credits: Team-BHP)



Today this cumbersome lifestyle means that fewer individuals are drawn to the profession. Yet as a nation India continues to rely on them for a majority of its trade and transportation needs.

It thus becomes important to consider opportunities that we can design to help make these journeys easier.

Brief: The architecture competition brief calls for a design of a rest stop for about 100 truck drivers on Indian Highways.

The rest stop must be able to provide 3 different degrees of rest to its stakeholders:

  1. It must allow quick pitstops for relief and refreshing oneself.
  2. It must allow for spaces to share and consume meals.
  3. It must allow spaces for sleep and longer rests.

Most importantly the design outcome must allow for these opportunities in a cost-effective way.




  • Design: The outcome must display your novel design approach in a clear and legible way.
  • Cost-effective: The design outcome in its materiality and design must be cost-effective.
  • Modular: The design should be able to adapt to changing needs of its users.
  • Robust: The design should be able to sustain through adversity and require little or cost-effective maintenance.



The site for this project is located on the National Highway 544, a 340-kilometre-long National Highway in South India connecting Salem in Tamil Nadu to the city of Kochi in Kerala. The chosen area is located in Kannadi-Kerala. Surrounding land is sporadically used for agriculture and there is a Renault service store and a few other smaller establishments in the area.

The designed outcome should employ elements that can be easily replicated around the country if and when needed.


Additional Resources

This competition contains additional resources that contain a set of files useful to complete the competition submission. This folder is made available on your profile dashboard automatically as soon as you register.

This additional resource folder of this competition contains:

Submission Format files in PSD | AI | InDD, 
Guide to Journal Section + Questions, 
Site Images, 
High-Resolution Site Map, and 
CAD file of the Site plan.


Submission Requirements

  1. Recommended number of sheets/presentation images/boards:
    3 (Three)of size [2800px x 3500px] in portrait digital format (JPEG only).
  2. Minimum 3 (Three) & No maximum sheet limit. Each image should be less than 15MB. (Do not submit PNG format)
  3. Minimum requisite submission are sheets/boards + Cover image containing:
    1. Site Plan
    2. 1 x Key concept section
    3. 3D views x 4
    4. Additional cover image of 2000px x 1000px
    5. Write an article/story in the Journal section# of the project (of about 700-1000 words) answering the questions given in the guide pdf you receive in the additional resources.


Submission Guidelines

  • Under additional resources, which you will receive after registration, you will be provided with a submission sheets template.
  • Submit JPEG images only.
  • Ensure that the final sheets submitted do not include your name or any other mark of identification.
  • Mention sheet number on the corner of every sheet.
  • All the sheets or images will be viewed on a digital device. e.g. Laptop screen or projector. Uploaded sheets or images will not be physically printed for evaluation. The submission hence should be prepared for digital viewing only.
  • Tip: Remember that your sheets will have to convey your ideas. Try using comprehensive presentation techniques; use images, illustrations, sketches, views, diagrams, text, etc. to express the design fully. For example, use exploded views to discuss multi-levelled conceptual models better.



  • The minimum eligible age for participation is 18 years.
  • The competitions are open worldwide for designers from any discipline.
  • You can participate as an individual or as a team of a maximum of 4 members.
  • All students and professionals can participate in the competitions.
  • For Students: A student is someone who is currently enrolled in a full-time graduate/undergraduate program at a university anywhere in the world on the date of registration. We will need proof of identity upon the result declaration. The proof of identity should clearly state that you were enrolled in the institution at the time of registration. You may also produce a bonafide/authorized certificate from the institution as proof of identity. Students are allowed to involve one mentor/professor/guide in their team provided the mentor has been authorized via a bonafide certificate of the University.
  • All the participants who do not belong to the student category will be considered professionals by default. Ph.D. candidates will also be considered professionals.
  • Institutional access is a program for students only if they are participating in the competition as a group of 20 people and want to submit 5-20 entries together. Institutional access has to be done under the guidance of a mentor/professor.
  • A team with even one professional will be considered as a professional entry.


Base Rules

  • You can submit more than one project but they have to be registered separately.
  • Your submission as part of any competition is linked to your UNI user account which stands as your identification. We do not have any identification codes.
  • Hence, your submission sheets should not include any form of identification or personal information such as your names, organization, city, etc.
  • This is a design idea challenge only. There is no built commission/realization associated with the problem.
  • Each competition requires submission of original work. If referring to an existing work like text, theory, images, or ideas, giving due credit is mandatory. Otherwise, it will be counted as plagiarism.
  • The official language of the competitions is English.
  • The registration fee is non-refundable. Therefore, should a participant or team change their mind, refuse or fail to submit an entry after registering, the registration amount will not be refunded. Read the cancellation policy for more information.
  • If there are any changes in competition brief or schedule, they shall be updated on the website.
  • When you register for a competition, you are automatically agreeing to the terms and conditions of UNI.
  • Anybody working with UNI or associated with us are not eligible to participate or receive awards in competitions hosted on UNI. That includes currently working employees at UNI, jury members, community moderators or contract agencies, and their direct relatives.


Judging Criteria

The entries will be judged by an international jury of the competition on the following criteria:

  • Presentation: The fundamental to a good entry is a visual delivery of ideas.
  • Concept/Idea: Quality of thought and intent in pre-design phase.
  • Programme/Spaces: How the spaces are conceived along with the programme.
  • Design Outcome: The final architectural outcome of the solution.

The judging panel can also add other criteria based on their internal discussions – which will be in line with the problem statement. Participants are advised to fulfill above given criteria first in their design. Names of the jury panel will be announced soon.

The decision of the Judges Panel is final, no appeals will be entertained and no further correspondence shall be entered into.

Please note that the jury scores are NOT affected by the number of likes on a project. Every submission is evaluated based on the judging criteria. However, ‘Likes’ play a role in determining the People’s Choice Awards.



Last Date of Registration: 23 May 2022

Last Date of Submission:  24 May 2022

Announcement of Results: 21 July 2022



For more details, please visit here.

Read More: Architecture Competitions | Hospitality Architecture | Public Architecture | Kerala | India