Kansas students win $50k award

By The Mercury

An interdisciplinary team of graduate students from Kansas State University, the University of Kansas and the University of Missouri-Kansas City won the Urban Land Institute’s Gerald D. Hines Student Urban Design Competition with the entry “The Armory.” The award includes $50,000 for the students.

The other finalist teams were from Harvard University, Yale University and a combined team from Ball State University and Purdue University.

The Kansas team, including three Master of Landscape Architecture students from the Kansas State University department of landscape architecture and regional and community and included: Kylie Harper, Hutchinson; Derek Hoetmer, Valley Center; and Kevin Cunningham, Denver, Colo., the Kansas team leader.

The team was advised by Jason Brody, assistant professor of regional and community planning at Kansas State University’s College of Architecture, Planning and Design.

“Winning the most prestigious urban design competition in the United States reflects the cumulative and individual strengths of these students’ professional educations,” said Kansas State’s Stephanie Rolley, head of the department of landscape architecture and regional and community planning.

The competition started with 149 teams comprised of 790 students representing 70 different universities in both the U.S. and Canada.

The task was to create a redevelopment proposal for the Downtown East area of Minneapolis. After the competition was whittled down to four teams, the students visited Minneapolis to refine their projects prior to the final review.

On April 11, the students presented their plan in a public forum to a distinguished jury composed of national leaders in design and development.

The KSU-KU-UMKC team designed a cosmopolitan neighborhood centered on an urban park space.

“It is a tremendous vision – contextually relevant, financially attractive and brilliantly executed,” Brody said. The award is a testament to the students’ hard work, collaborative spirit and prodigious talent.”

K-State advisers to the team include Rolley; Blake Belanger, landscape architecture professor, and Gary Stith, assistant professor of regional and community planning.

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