UNM professor and class win national planning award: UNM Newsroom

A Community & Regional Planning (CRP) assistant professor at The University of New Mexico’s School of Architecture & Planning is helping to build his student’s resumes’, while expanding awareness of The University.

Moises Gonzales recently traveled to New York City with some of his current and former students to collect the 2017 American Planning Association student project award, given to the best “contribution to contemporary issues in planning.”

Andrew Webb, former planner for the City of Albuquerque, submitted the project for award consideration. Now a senior city planner in Denver, Webb wrote, “I thought it was a timely, well-researched and effective example of applied planning.”

Because this was a juried award, it distinguished UNM’s CRP program as competitive among other planning schools.

“This is the first time we’ve won national recognition from the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP),” Gonzales said. “Our achievement demonstrates that we provide the best planning education possible. UNM is affordable, but doesn’t compromise quality.”

He also said winning the award will help with recruitment efforts.

“In so many cases – including my own experiences in undergraduate and graduate school – student projects tend to be somewhat detached from the real interplay between developers/property owners, community members and regulators that shapes the built environment,” he said. “This project got students involved in the early stages of a real policy debate as it was playing out, and I was extremely impressed with the rigor of their analyses, understanding of a controversial topic and thoughtful recommendations.”

Gonzales undertook the project while teaching a master’s in CRP at City Lab, a joint venture between the UNM School of Architecture & Planning and the City of Albuquerque. The students use the city itself, with a studio space in downtown Albuquerque, to research, explore and propose ideas…

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