"What we're looking for are some real solutions to housing," said Dennis Hodgin, vice president of AIA Monterey Bay.
"We want to create a vision that the public can see and buy into -- one that is environmentally sensitive, sustainable and fits with the character and quality of Monterey County."
Architects, designers, planners and even lay people will be invited to submit their ideas to the web-based competition, which is scheduled to open next April.
The local AIA chapter has already invited the cities, counties, and staff from the offices of Reps.
said members of AIA Monterey Bay
came up with the idea for a housing competition after a meeting with Farr last February in which the congressman asked the local chapter to get involved.
"As we dug into the problem we realized how complex it is," Hodgin
said."It's a huge problem that affects all levels of life, such as the environment and traffic."
Members were inspired to hold a housing competition -- an innovation often used in Europe.
"This gives us an opportunity to put ideas on paper and for the public, architect, city and government leaders to look at the ideas and select the best," Hodgin
Carmel Acting Planning Director Chip Rerig was equally enthusiastic about the competition."I'm a big advocate of what the AIA is doing -- taking it [affordable housing] away from the theoretical basis.
"I think we need the involvement of the design community," Rerig added."If it's just planners or housing advocates, without designers, we're going to have something that looks like projects."