FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 16, 2023
Mayor Noble Announces Yes to ADU! Accessory Dwelling Unit Design Competition Winners
KINGSTON, NY – Mayor Steven T. Noble is pleased to announce the winners of the Yes to ADUs! Accessory Dwelling Unit Design Competition.
The Yes to ADUs! Accessory Dwelling Unit Design Competition is part of the Plus One Home Program, a partnership between the City of Kingston, Ulster County, and RUPCO. The winning design will receive $25,000 to produce permit-ready construction documents, which Kingston homeowners can use to obtain building permits to construct new, detached ADUs. An evaluation committee composed of local design professionals reviewed all contest submissions and selected the DEMO Architecture team’s design. The runner up is Plus One by Andrade Architecture. A $3,000 award for the best non-professional/student design will go to Part & Parcel by Rafael Cruz.
“This competition was a fun, creative way to raise visibility about the benefits of ADUs, which are now allowed citywide with our new zoning code,” said Mayor Noble. “We believe ADUs will contribute to the relief of the local housing shortage, as they encourage density, housing variety, and affordability. I want to thank all the contest participants and congratulate DEMO! The winning design, which focuses on privacy and includes an enclosed outdoor area, is a stylish example of a detached ADU that might work in your own backyard.”
“The interest this competition generated shows that the local architectural and design community has a strong desire to help alleviate our housing shortage. Similarly, many homeowners are eager to explore the possibility of adding ADUs to their properties. I’m delighted that Kingston’s new zoning code has legalized ADUs citywide, and I believe these designs will have a lasting impact on housing options within our city,” said Bartek Starodaj, Director of Housing Initiatives. “The winning L’ADU design shows that even in a mere 460sq ft, ADU occupants can have a beautiful and private space that would fit in a typical backyard.”
“This competition has been a great way to highlight ADUs as one bottom-up affordable housing solution for Ulster County,” says Kai Lord-Farmer, Senior Planner in the Ulster County Planning Department. “I am especially thrilled that the construction plans for the winning design will be free to download and use for any homeowner in the County. We hope other municipalities will follow Kingston’s lead in pre-approving the plans and create a streamlined approval process for ADUs to rent or provide housing to a family member or friend.”
Alessandro Ronfini of DEMO Architecture said, “We are excited to hear that the City of Kingston has chosen our privacy-centered and energy efficient ADU to be developed into a ready-to-build set of drawings. Despite its small footprint, we hope that L'ADU will be far reaching and succeed in its goal of bringing more affordable housing to Kingston.”
Plans from DEMO Architecture are expected to be available in early 2024.
Robin Andrade of Andrade Architecture said, “This was a team effort and truly a collaboration of professional/ mentor and student/intern, spearheaded by Esteban Vanegas. Our goal was to create a series of ADU designs that function architecturally as standalone homes, while respecting the context of their surrounding neighborhoods. The designs efficiently utilize accessible materials and technologies to create modest dwellings that are practical for local contractors to build.”
The design competition attracted 26 professional submissions and six non-professional submissions. All the submissions are posted on Engage Kingston. Members of the evaluation committee for the design competition included Sonia Lemus-Wright of Wright Companies, Geoffrey Harden of Harden Design, Christine Brady LaValle of Ulster County Habitat for Humanity, Andrea Puetz of Dutton Architecture, and Desiree Lyle of Simply Sustainable.
The Yes to ADUs! Accessory Dwelling Unit Design Competition is funded with the City of Kingston’s American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding.
The Plus One Home Program will provide funding to low- and moderate-income residents to create new code-compliant ADUs. To be eligible, homeowners must meet the income threshold (i.e., earning 100% or less of Ulster County Area Media Income) and can receive up to $125,000 dollars for the construction or rehabilitation of an ADU. In exchange, the homeowner also must agree to rent the apartment at an affordable rate for a minimum of 10 years. The Plus One Home Program is a one-stop hub for assisting homeowners interested in financing, designing, and permitting an ADU. Applications for the Plus One Home Program were due in September and awards will be announced soon.
Mayor Noble established the Department of Housing Initiatives in 2020 to support housing planning in the City of Kingston. The Department manages housing-related grants, supports the construction of new market-rate and affordable housing, develops policies to protect existing residents, and addresses the connection between housing and sustainability, health, and mobility. The Department also reviews the disposition of city-owned property suitable for housing development and collaborates with local and regional housing organizations. Visit https://kingston-ny.gov/housing.