A team of students at the UT Austin School of Architecture and the McCombs School of Business has been named the winners of the 20th annual Gerald Hines Student Competition by the Urban Land Institute (ULI).
Named after the longtime ULI leader, the competition presents graduate students with an interest in land use to create a hypothetical development plan for a real city in North America. This year’s winning master plan for a mixed-use site in the Oakland, California beat out entries from Harvard, Georgia Tech, and a combined effort from MIT and Harvard to take home the $50,000 top prize. The other three finalists received $10,000 each.
Nicknamed “The Stack,” the winning design reimagines a four-block site across three intertwined pillars of health, culture, and connectivity to create a LEED Platinum-level development that is completely integrated with the surrounding downtown area and neighboring communities, transforming them into an important font of social uplift for some of the city’s most vulnerable residents.
The architecture team members worked alongside their peers at UT Austin’s McCombs School of Business as per the competition’s degree program requirements and completed the project in a period of just 15 days.
“The ULI competition has been an amazing experience in collaborating across disciplines and cultures,” the group said in a statement. “Our team became a family through this process, unified by a cohesive vision to reimagine Oakland’s relationship to I-880 and compelled to embody the creative spirit of the city. Guided by our three pillars of health, culture and connection, we proposed a mixed-income and mixed-use development committed to driving positive social change for Oakland. We are so grateful for this unforgettable journey, and will take it with us as we continue working toward building healthier and more equitable urban spaces.”
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