Winners of NC State’s 2019 Studio Prize for Veteran Micro Housing Include Two Clark Nexsen Designers

NC State's School of Architecture received a prestigious 2019 Studio Prize from Architect magazine for work focused on homeless veterans

North Carolina State University’s School of Architecture received a prestigious 2019 Studio Prize from Architect magazine for work focused on homeless veterans. The Studio Prize “celebrates the most innovative academic studios in North America.” Clark Nexsen designers Scott Needham and Nicole Simeonsson were among the master’s-level students of a 2018 studio that researched and developed design guidelines for micro housing to support homeless and disabled veterans in North Carolina.

NC State is proud to accept this national award for the School of Architecture that “recognizes the excellence of the School of Architecture’s community-engaged approach to teaching.”

Six design education projects received awards this year and were published in the September issue of ARCHITECT Magazine, the publication of the American Institute of Architects (AIA).

Professors Thomas Barrie, DPACSA, and David Hill, FAIA led the studio after being approached by the North Carolina Coalition to End Homelessness to explore low-cost, high-quality housing that would offer easy access to community and health services. The faculty and students’ research and presentations were drawn together in a 100-page book for the Coalition Against Homelessness to use as a “playbook” to guide future planning and construction efforts statewide.

After graduating from NC State with a Master of Architecture in December of 2018, Scott joined Clark Nexsen in early 2019 as a designer. Looking back on the micro housing studio, Scott says, “I found the project to be a fascinating exploration for a specific and underserved population. Working directly with the client and getting feedback throughout the process, along with the research done, added depth and meaning to the project. These factors and inputs definitely changed the designs produced by the class for the better.”

Village plans incorporated housing units, a community house with social services, and outdoor programming such as sports fields and gardens. Shown above: Scott Needham’s Micro Unit 1 rendering

Prior to joining Clark Nexsen full-time early in 2019, Nicole Simeonsson worked with the firm from 2015 to 2018 as a student intern. Nicole holds both a Master of Architecture and a Bachelor of Environmental Design in Architecture from NC State.

NC State's School of Architecture received a prestigious 2019 Studio Prize from Architect magazine for work focused on homeless veterans

The affordability and cost-effective maintenance of houses can be realized by using materials that are mass-produced and readily available. But the use of conventional materials does not mean that the design of the units must be conventional. Assembly system of a micro house: Nicole Simeonsson

Housing Courtyard rendering by Nicole Simeonsson

Link to ARCHITECT Magazine article by Clay Risen


Course: Micro-Housing for Homeless and Disabled Veterans
School NC State University, School of Architecture, College of Design
Level Graduate and Senior Undergraduate
Duration Fall 2018 semester
Instructors Thomas Barrie, AIA (professor of architecture, academy of faculty engaged in extension); David Hill, AIA (professor of architecture, chair of the School of Architecture)
Project Sponsor Terry Allebaugh (community impact coordinator, North Carolina Coalition to End Homelessness)
Project Research Assistant Alyssa Dohler (M.Arch. student)
Report Designer Katie Froebose (Master of Graphic Design student)
Visiting Experts Davin Hong, AIA, Omar Hakeem, AIA
Advisory Committee Andy Fox (associate professor of landscape architecture); David Harris (Wake County Human Services Housing Division); Mary Haskett (professor of psychology, CHASS); David Maurer, AIA (TightLines Designs); Lewis Sadler (Sadler Construction; Wake County Home Builders Association); Jeff Smith (NC Dept. of Health and Human Services); Abbie Szymanski (Partnership to End Homelessness)
Students Austin Corriher, Ross Davidson, Alyssa Dohler, Kal Fadem, Assoc. AIA, Ryan Kilgannon, Elenor Methven, Justin McNair, Amelia Murphy, Scott Needham, Assoc. AIA, Katie O’Campo, Nicole Simeonsson, Assoc. AIA (work submitted)