Our development team has been awarded the “Best Innovative Design” award by Habitat for Humanity International for our South Park project. As part of its annual Habitat House Design Contest, winners demonstrate Habitat’s commitment to high-quality housing that is safe and affordable for the long-term, as well as strategies that advance shelter technology toward building more and building better in recognition of a responsibility to meet immense affordable housing need in an equitable way.
The South Park project, which broke ground on September 2, is located just south of Georgetown across the Duwamish River, and just north of the city of Tukwila at 714 S Donovan St. Constructed on two lots that previously housed one home, it will consist of 13 two-bedroom, 1.5 bath, 975 square feet eco-friendly affordable units. Habitat partner Blueprint Capital, whose help enabled the organization to purchase the land for its land trust, has been instrumental in this important development.
Designs were judged by a broad and esteemed group of construction experts, based on criteria developed by a committee that included representatives from affiliates of all sizes and regions of the U.S., along with at-large industry professionals and Habitat for Humanity International staff members. Highlighted features and design elements were selected based on quality of material, durability of design, affordability, suitability for volunteer construction, and ability to lower the cost of long-term home maintenance and operations. Not every feature exhibits each trait; the scoring process was designed to assess a plan with the most advantageous configuration of elements and traits based on both adaptability and regional conditions.
Habitat SKC’s award noted how a creative use of ADU/DADU zoning turned a one-unit parcel into 13 units in an extremely tight land market and used house designs that serve underrepresented families in the Seattle-King County portfolio.
Said Patrick Sullivan, Habitat SKC’s Director of Real Estate and Development, “This project showcases Habitat SKC’s rigorous and aggressive approach to our region’s housing crisis.
Land fit for development is very rare and highly competitive, and through utilizing a creative approach, we purchased the property at market value and made use of the accessory dwelling unit codes around ADUs and DADUs.”
This strategy allowed Habitat SKC to maximize the development capacity on the site in a way more commonly seen by private developers and represents the organization’s reaction to the housing crisis to address different family types. The units are designed as urban infill efficiency cottages and Habitat families have responded in kind. Half of the initial applicants are single mothers with one child – a nontraditional applicant for the affiliate.