UAlbany Team’s Award-Winning City Plan Improves Saratoga Springs West Side Neighborhood

Contact: Lisa James Goldsberry (518) 437-4989

ALBANY, N.Y. (March 13, 2003) - A plan developed by 17 University at Albany students to improve the West Side Neighborhood of Saratoga Springs was honored by the American Institute of Certified Planners. The team competed with 70 accredited universities and will receive the Best Student Project award on Monday, March 31 at the American Planning Association’s (APA) national conference in Denver.

The award-winning project, “Planning and Design Recommendations for the West Side Neighborhood of Saratoga Springs, N.Y.,” will be featured in the March issue of Planning Magazine. It was prepared by the students as part of the fall 2001 Graduate Planning Studio Project for the West Side Neighborhood Association and the City of Saratoga Springs Office of Community Development.

The project team produced a highly-illustrated 130-page report with recommendations that are already being implemented by the city of Saratoga Springs in collaboration with Mayor Kenneth Klotz, Community Development Director Bradley S. Birge and other city officials. Proposed changes included improving streets and public spaces, building neighborhood identity, developing neighborhood commercial activity and improving the housing stock.

“The University at Albany Planning Studio was thorough in its study analysis, sensitive to neighborhood input and participation, and presented a professional-quality document that reflects a high level of expertise and commitment by the students,” Klotz wrote. “This document will provide the city with a valuable resource for alternatives and implications for future investment in this area.”

The project also won the 2002 APA Upstate New York Chapter Outstanding Student Project Award.

The masters program in planning was established in the Department of Geography and Planning at UAlbany in 1982 and currently has more than 200 graduates.

Established in 1844 and designated a center of the State University of New York in 1962, the University at Albany's broad mission of excellence in undergraduate and graduate education, research and public service engages 17,000 diverse students in eight degree-granting schools and colleges.

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