ORLANDO -- The National Association of Home Builders announced the five winners of the Workforce Housing Awards Friday morning at the International Builders' Show in Orlando.
The award recognizes builders who help create affordable housing for many Americans who work in public service, retail and the service industry.
"These awards recognize outstanding examples of workforce housing communities across the nation that provide decent and affordable homes for nurses, police officers, schoolteachers, retail workers and other hard-working people near their places of employment," NAHB President David Pressly said in a written statement.
The criteria for the winners included: Exterior design, interior architecture, sales success, construction quality, cost efficiency, successful management of any impediments and level of cooperation among stakeholders.
"A lot of things make it difficult to make housing affordable to the American workforce," explained NAHB Public Affairs Specialist Blake Smith. "This is an issue all across the country. It is important to have companies who set good examples.
"There are many ways to get there and none of them are easy."
The five developments to receive the 2006 award were AMCAL Multi-Housing Inc., Trophy Homes, JSA Inc. Brighton Construction and C.P. Morgan.
AMCAL's Avenue 26 Master Plan focused on a blighted industrial district in Los Angeles. The 369 new apartments and 165 condominiums are part of a revival effort that is anchored by a new subway station just minutes from the new complex.
"The houses didn't look affordable but they were," said Gary Schlenker, division manager.
According to Schlenker, their homes were $15,000 to $30,000 less than their competitors.
JSA Inc. (www.jsainc.com) created affordable housing for military families through their Ft. Meade project. The new homes at Ft. Meade, a military base in the Washington, D.C. suburbs, are based on new urbanism principles.
The smallest sized winner, Liberty Village in Lincoln Neb. was developed by Brighton Construction. The one acre, 20-home community is home to families from 10 different nations.
Marilyn Ridge, a community created by C.P. Morgan in Noblesville, Ind., was specifically developed to make housing affordable in the state's most affluent county. The homes in the new community cost between $99,000 and $130,000.
"Our mission is to deliver more square feet and more than anyone ever wanted," said Randy Truitt, director of public relations.
Learn more about markets featured in this article: Orlando, FL.