Student Teams Visit Santa Barbara for Affordable Housing Design National Competition

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Four finalist teams from University of Texas at Austin, University of Kansas, University of Maryland at College Park and Harvard University tour Housing Authority of City of Santa Barbara project site for the a national architectural design competition through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)

Now in its third year, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)’s Innovation in Affordable Housing Student Design and Planning Competition seeks to encourage research and innovation in the areas of affordable housing design and planning. This year, HUD selected Monteria Village public housing development in Santa Barbara, owned by the Housing Authority of the City of Santa Barbara (HACSB) for the design challenge.

The four finalist student teams from the University of Texas at Austin, University of Kansas, University of Maryland at College Park and Harvard University recently visited HACSB and Monteria Village, met residents and heard from local Housing Authority staff, HUD representatives, and Mayor Helene Schneider about the community and need for affordable housing.

HACSB’s Monteria Village is composed of 28 family units, built in 1973. The Housing Authority is in the process of rehabilitating and preserving its aging HUD Assisted Public Housing portfolio, long suffering from continual Congressional budget cuts to the HUD funding necessary for their proper upkeep, to promote and ensure their viability for future generations.

The design competition challenges multi-disciplinary teams of graduate students to consider the complex challenges associated with rehabbing the current structure or demolishing it and creating new construction. These student participants need to consider design, community development, and financing elements in order to provide an all-encompassing plan and solution that would allow the housing authority to meet its goal of offering safe and sustainable affordable housing to area families. Students also need to understand the needs of the intended residents, the zoning restrictions, and leveraging opportunities.

The competition will culminate on April 19th in a final presentation by the student finalist teams at HUD’s headquarters in Washington, DC. The jury of five academics, practitioners, planners, and architects will come to a decision and the first place team will receive $20,000 and the runner up will receive $10,000.

About The Housing Authority of the City of Santa Barbara

The Housing Authority of the City of Santa Barbara is a local public agency created for the purpose of providing safe, decent, and quality affordable housing and supportive services to eligible persons with limited incomes, through a variety of federal, state, local and private resources. Since 1969, the Housing Authority of the City of Santa Barbara has developed and/or secured over 3,600 units of affordable rental housing for Santa Barbara through a variety of federal, state, local and private funding sources. Please visit the website at www.hacsb.org

 

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