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May 21, 2015

UW wins affordable housing challenge

Seven graduate students from the University of Washington won the Bank of America Merrill Lynch Low Income Housing Challenge in San Francisco last week.

The team from the UW's College of Built Environments was one of several competing to come up with an affordable housing project. The UW team was one of four finalists judged by a panel of developers, architects and financial experts based on financial feasibility, design and community engagement.

Here is the UW team: real estate students Ben Broesamle and Sam Yimparsit, urban planning students Zi Cai and Genevieve Hale-Case, architecture students Mohammed Al-Humaid and Raymond Sayers, and public policy student Martha Sassorossi.

They proposed a 69-unit project in Tacoma called Spur in Wedge Village. UW Professor Mike Pyatok's design studio helped line up Tacoma Housing Authority and Salvation Army of Tacoma as partners for the proposal.

Al Levine, the team's faculty advisor, said the students are trying to make the hypothetical project a reality.

The low income housing challenge is in its 24th year. This is only the second time that UW has participated.

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