2019 Innovation Challenge finalists

The National Multifamily Housing Council (NMHC) has announced the five finalists for its 2019 Innovation Challenge. Every year, the Challenge seeks innovative solutions to vexing apartment industry challenges. This year’s challenge sought solutions for reducing the construction costs or time to bend the cost curve of housing production as a way to address the nation’s housing affordability crisis.

NMHC’s Innovation Committee members reviewed more than 50 applications to select this year’s finalists. In alphabetical order, they are:

High Design, Accelerated Construction

Submitted by: KTGY Architecture + Planning

Hope on Alvarado, currently under construction, was designed by KTGY using advanced modular construction, reducing the cost and decreasing the time required to create housing for the chronically homeless in Los Angeles. The building modules leverage the dimensions and material of containers for highly efficient transport and construction. The modules are an innovative system applied to a historically tested and successful architectural design scheme.

Park House | A Housing Solution for Repurposed Parking Structures

Submitted by: KTGY Architecture + Planning

A conceptual proposal by KTGY’s R+D Studio to retrofit existing underutilized parking structures with steel modular components as multi-family residential units. While prefabricated steel modules are constructed offsite, site work is completed and the parking structure is retrofitted and renovated in preparation for conversion into housing, significantly reducing construction cost and time.

The Prescient System

Submitted by: Prescient Co.

A digital design-build system created to revolutionize the multifamily construction industry. Anchored in progressive technologies, the firm links standardized architectural design and products, automated structural engineering, precise manufacturing and rapid on-site assembly along a single digital thread. This results in less time, costs and risks in multi-unit residential construction projects.


Submitted by: Upbrella Construction

Technology that allows for fully sheltered construction of the structure and envelope of high buildings that are made of either concrete or steel. Their system eliminates the need for tower cranes and begins the construction process by producing a mobile and permanent roof. The roof provides access to the construction zone, material handling systems, protective enclosure, roof lifting mechanism and a peripheral work platform that allows more than 80% of structure and envelope work to be done at the height of an average worker.

VirtualAPT’s Proprietary Technology

Submitted by: VirtualAPT

VirtualAPT provides digital visualization technologies that significantly reduce days on market and vacancy rates by using autonomous robots to capture 360° moving videos that can be viewed with any modern device. Viewers can navigate between amenities, units, and neighborhood locations within a customizable web interface. The technology allows for 3D point clouds and Revit model overlays to visualize how a space will look when fully built and digital staging in vacant built units (without size limitations).