GGLO Architecture, MDC earn affordable housing awards

The Tacoma Pierce County Affordable Housing Consortium has announced this year’s recipients of its annual Excellence in Affordable Housing Awards.

The juried awards honor individuals and organizations that have made significant advances toward curbing homelessness and providing safe, healthy, and affordable homes in the South Sound. Award categories include Advocacy, Community Impact, Innovation, and Sustainability.

The awards were presented during a fund-raising event on Weds., Oct. 22, at Foss Waterway Seaport in downtown Tacoma.

The 2014 Excellence in Affordable Housing Awards include:

  • ADVOCACY — Senator Jeannie Darneille was recognized for her work — including 12 years in the House of Representatives, and more than 30 years working in non-profit social service agencies — to improve and expand education, health care, and economic opportunities for children, families, and disabled individuals.
  • COMMUNITY IMPACT — Making a Difference in Community (formerly the Metropolitan Development Council), a non-profit organization that provides services to homeless and low-income families in Tacoma and Pierce County, was recognized for its work to renovate the former Baywatch Apartment Building into the Randall Townsend Apartments. The $4.1 million project turned the formerly abandoned 95-year-old building near downtown Tacoma into a 35-unit facility that serves previously homeless individuals living with disabilities. Making a Difference in Community hosted a grand-opening celebration for the Randall Townsend Apartments in August.
  • INNOVATION — Associated Ministries, Shared Housing Services, REACH Center, and Vadis were recognized for their work to create Housing 4 Success, which finds homes and services for homeless young people in Tacoma and Pierce County.
  • SUSTAINABILITY — GGLO Architecture was recognized for its work on the first phase of Bay Terrace, a Tacoma Housing Authority facility that offers 16 town homes, 54 apartment-style units, a 7,000-square-foot community/education center, and multi-purpose rooms for community programming in Tacoma’s Hilltop neighborhood. GGLO Architecture, Tacoma Housing Authority, and Absher Construction collaborated to create a project that benefits the environment (local and recycled materials were used) and residents (energy- and water-saving features aim to reduce utility bills). Tacoma Housing Authority hosted a grand-opening celebration for Bay Terrace in August.

The non-profit Tacoma Pierce County Affordable Housing Consortium was created in 2001 and consists of 62 housing providers, lenders, and other stakeholders who work in Pierce County to provide a unified voice for affordable housing in the community. More information is online at affordablehousingconsortium.org.

Recent Excellence in Affordable Housing Awards recipients include League of Women Voters of Tacoma-Pierce County (Advocacy Award — 2013); Gray Lumber Company (Community Impact Award — 2013); Master Builders Association of Pierce County (Sustainability Award — 2013); Washington Low Income Housing Authority (Advocacy Award — 2012); City of Tacoma housing division manager Ric Teasley (Community Impact Award — 2012); Tacoma Housing Authority (Innovation Award — 2012); Tacoma/Pierce County Habitat for Humanity (Sustainability Award — 2012).