2020 ULI Hines Student Competition Finalist: “Rock Ridge” – Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Entry Title: Rock Ridge
Team Code: 2019-557
School: Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Overview (Narrative Excerpt from Project Submission): “Rock Ridge is a community that redefines resilience. Located on the literal “rock ridge” of Florida, the relative high point of the flat Florida coast, we see this as a physical and metaphorical place of refuge to create social resilience, where people of different incomes and ages can build connections and where we can embrace change without subsuming existing communities. On-site transit, medical services, mixed-income housing, and job opportunities create a place built to endure.”

Jury comments on the original proposal:

  • This is a comprehensive design scheme at a good scale.
  • Liked the circular bridge, which could realistically connect the neighborhoods and address street grid issues. The diversity and scale of the buildings lead the focus to the bridge. The bridge feels like something that would bring people to the community just to be on it.
  • Thoughtful community benefits, alongside other comprehensive considerations like the environment, housing, water system, aging, and diversity.
  • Liked the medical services center, mixed income housing.
  • Good discussion on social equity and jobs.
  • Porous design that included stormwater management.
  • The use of “Latino urbanism” was creative and unique.
  • Financing numbers were credible.
  • Has very in-depth sourcing on equity and debt with focus on making it work, with every financing and public tool they could find.


  • Kristopher Steele (Team Leader), Master of City Planning, Master of Real Estate Development, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Drew Morrison, Master of City Planning, Master of Business Administration (MBA), Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Kecheng Huang, Master of Science in Architecture and Urban Studies, Computer Science, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Carl Hedman, Master of City Planning, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Stephanie Peña, Master of City Planning, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Academic Advisers:

  • Siqi Zheng, Samuel Tak Lee Associate Professor Faculty Director, Sustainable Urbanization Lab, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Submission Materials:

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