Congratulations to UNSW Built Environment first year Master of Architecture Students who have been awarded first place in the National Affordable Housing Consortium (NAHC) ‘Whole of Life, Whole of Use’ Design Competition.
The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) is a significant initiative that promotes independent living for people with disability. The design competition is intended to link into the NDIS reforms promoting independent living and needs and bring cost-effective design to the market, as both a social housing product and as an affordable market product.
UNSW Built Environment received first place in both site design categories, also entered by students from The University of Melbourne, Griffith University and Bond University. 
Winners include Hugo Chan, Rina Yuen Ming Chan, Luen Ria Tumbali Samonte, Ramin Shojaie, who received first place for their design solution for the Valley Park, Westmeadows, VIC. Hong-Thanh Nguyen and Zachary Raymond Bauer took out first place for their project focused on Alexandra Hills, located 25km east of Brisbane CBD.
The students’ designs evolve around the production of standard residential dwellings that can be bought and sold in the general market. The buildings are flexible and adaptable for people from different disability groups to be able to live independently. 
Daniela Weatherill, Special Projects Manager at National Affordable Housing Consortium says the panel was very impressed with the quality the UNSW brought to the Competition. 
“The level and quality of work presented was extremely high and it was evident that a lot of effort and hard work has gone into this process.”
By engaging universities to run this competition, versus going to the open market, promotes opportunity and aspiration for young professionals and encourages new creative thinking for a new scheme.
Course coordinator Dr Dijana Alic says students who took part in the competition achieved a steep learning curve.
“The area of disability is not commonly explored in architectural studios and collaborating and exchanging ideas with the practice and outside organisations and clients is extremely beneficial to students at this level of study as they enter the industry.”
Congratulations to the successful Master of Architecture students, course coordinator Dr Dijana Alic, studio tutors Rob Brown and Carly Martin, and also to UNSW Built Environment staff who were of great importance during various stages of the competition including Dean Prof Alec Tzannes, Dr Katy Bridges, Dr Bruce Judd, Dean Utian, Graham Hannah and numerous outside guests who gave their support.
Details about the Awards Ceremony will be provided in due course.