City of Atlanta Seeks Proposals for Innovative Affordable Housing Design

Staff Report From Metro Atlanta CEO

Thursday, August 31st, 2017

The City of Atlanta announced that the Department of City Planning launched its domestiCITY design competition, a program seeking innovative design ideas to promote more affordable housing options in the City of Atlanta. The competition calls for organizations to propose feasible models for designing and constructing multi-family affordable housing units.

Proposals should address challenges such as increases in land and construction costs, as well as demand for affordable housing outpacing supply in heavily-populated areas. Santa Fe Villas, a four-acre 147-unit supportive housing development in Southwest Atlanta, will serve as the pilot project site for the competition.

“Atlanta’s economic future is best secured by a housing market that includes quality options for all income levels. We are committed to exploring strategies that result in more affordable workforce housing in the City of Atlanta, and we proud to launch this competition,” said Mayor Kasim Reed. “DomestiCITY allows housing and design experts to join in on this mission and we look forward to implementing the best solution.”

The competition timeline includes:

  • Q&A Deadline: Tuesday, October 23

  • Registration Deadline: Tuesday, October 30

  • Submission Deadline: Tuesday, Nov 14, 5:00 pm Pacific Time

  • Winners Announced:  Wednesday, December 13

  • Phase II Final Submission: January 31, 2018

  • Competition Exhibition: February 12 – March 26, 2018

The competition will consist of two phases. In Phase I, an independent judging panel will anonymously select five winning finalist entries, as well as select an additional submission that demonstrates superb architectural development to receive the “Architectural Innovation” award. Each of the finalists will be awarded $20,000.

The second phase of the competition will provide an opportunity for each winning team to expand their Phase I design proposal. The selected winning team will receive an additional cash stipend of $30,000 to further develop the project.

Atlanta’s metropolitan population is expected to grow by 2.5 million residents over the next 20 years.  The City of Atlanta is expected to assume a substantial portion of this growth, tripling in size from a current population of 473,000 residents. The Department of City Planning is currently developing a City Design that will ensure that Atlanta is prepared for such growth.

“The City is finalizing the Atlanta City Design, which will be critical in guiding us through Atlanta’s growth and assist us in planning for the city’s future,” says Tim Keane, Commissioner of the Department of City Planning. “The domestiCITY design competition is an extension of Atlanta City Design that will examine innovative strategies for the planning, design, construction and operation of affordable and sustainable developments in increasingly urbanized areas.”

The Department of City Planning is partnering with Enterprise Community Partners and Assist Inc. Community Design Center to administer the competition.