Every year when the holiday season comes around, architects show off their design talent by constructing structures made entirely out of gingerbread and candy accents. This week, Washington, D.C.–based architecture firm David M. Schwarz Architects held its 11th annual event called Gingertown, where architects, engineers, and building contractors came together in multiple U.S. cities to build an edible town to donate for display and raise money for nearby organizations.
For the 2016 holiday season, the firm chose to build the city of London. On Dec. 6 at its Washington D.C. office, teams from other well-known architecture firms such as Perkins + Will, Gensler, and HKS Architects built almost 50 structures for the miniature city, including iconic buildings like the London Eye, Big Ben, and the Gherkin. Each building was cut out of gingerbread and then detailed with chocolate, frosting, sprinkles, and other sugary materials. Participants had just four hours on Tuesday night to build their elaborate buildings before they were judged and then put on display.
Since 2006 when the initiative started, the event has also expanded to other locations in the U.S. including Dallas, Atlanta, and Nashville, Tenn. While the D.C. office was busy making their city, these other cities were also constructing their own versions of London. Although each event branch had its own local sponsors and participants, all of the structures within the Gingertowns will be dissembled and donated to local hospitals, healthcare facilities, and community support organizations for display during the holiday season. Previous recipients in D.C. include Children’s National Medical Center, St. Elizabeth’s Hospital and So Others Might Eat.
The completed gingerbread town will be on display in Washington D.C. through Dec. 12