Date: March 6, 2008
For the second year in a row, students from Andrews University’s School of Architecture Urban Design Studio were recognized by the Congress for New Urbanism (CNU) with a Charter Award of Excellence. The Charter Awards program is unique in its emphasis on the entirety of the built and natural environment—from the function and sustainability of regions to the fine-grain architectural details that help strengthen people's ties to a place over time.
This year, 26 fifth-year Andrews University architecture students were awarded for their work in Michigan City, Ind. As the only academic winner among 15 awards this year, the work won “unanimous praise from jurors and favorable comparisons to many of the professional submissions,” according to a press release from the CNU.
In Michigan City, the students engaged local citizens, officials and agencies in an eight-day public charrette in order to identify local growth patterns, places worth preserving, available resources, and desirable yet feasible growth strategies for a revitalization plan. The results were a set of goals for possible future redevelopment. The studio and charrette were led by Assistant Professors Andrew von Maur and Troy Homenchuk.
According to a CNU press release, the project casts needed attention on economically depressed Michigan City, Ind., showing it how to capitalize on its valuable urban form and Lake Michigan location. A final summary PDF of the project proposal is available at www.andrewsurbandesign.org.
The project was received very favorably by the Michigan City community. Mayor Chuck Oberlie and Councilman Richard Murphy are already working towards implementation of a number of key proposals.
Last year, students were given the award for creating a development plan for the city of Saucier, Miss., which was eventually adopted with a zoning ordinance by the county.