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School of Architecture's Third CNU Award

Date: April 20, 2009

The Congress for the New Urbanism (CNU), a non-profit organization promoting community development, urban design and restoration, recently announced the CNU Charter Award Recipients for 2009. For the third year in a row, the Andrews University School of Architecture was selected as one of 12 professional and academic projects as representations of the best of “The New Urbanism”—an international movement that promotes the building of communities and the Congress’ principles.
Other 2009 recipients include the University of Notre Dame’s Kai Hu students, as well as several companies and urbanism teams scattered across North America.
The graduate architecture students were awarded for an Urban Design Studio project held from Sept. 21–Oct. 1, 2008. The intense 10-day workshop took place at the Great Abaco Island of the Bahamas. “Planning Abaco” strived to bring people together, create vision and lay down guidelines to promote the building and preservation of rural and urban landscapes in the area.
Projects are selected for recognition by a jury of leading urbanists searching for works that exemplify the principles of the Charter of the New Urbanism. The awards emphasize the extent of the built and natural environment, examining the “big picture” of the region’s weaknesses and the small details of the people’s needs over time.
Honorees are said to “set the gold standard” for urban design and serve as powerful examples for future community development. All twelve projects that received the CNU award brought excellence in urbanism and sustainability to large and small sites around the world, including locations in the United States, Bahamas, China and the United Kingdom.
The Planning Abaco project focused on South Abaco and Central Marsh Harbour. Students helped prepare South Abaco for sustainable development, shaped the Marsh Harbour neighborhoods, prepared different regions for opportunities to grow, and helped Great Abaco avoid urban sprawl through different plans and designs.
The international team who hosted the design workshop consisted of 26 graduate architecture students directed by Andrew von Maur and Troy Homenchuk, assistant professors in the School of Architecture.
“It’s evident that God was blessing the efforts of this studio as we worked with the folks in the Bahamas, and then as we refined the presentation of good design principles that earned an award,” says Homenchuk. “The good Lord deserves all the glory for our humble efforts as teachers, students and architects. I feel blessed to have been a small part of something much greater than we could have anticipated.”
Andrews students and other award recipients will be recognized in a ceremony at the annual Congress for the New Urbanism in Denver, Colo., June 13.

-Written by Ashleigh Jardine, student news writer, Office of Integrated Marketing & Communication

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