Owe’neh Bupingeh Preservation Plan

Ohkay Owingeh, New Mexico

The HUD Secretary's Opportunity & Empowerment Award honors excellence in community planning that has led to measurable benefits in terms of increased economic development, employment, education, or housing choice and mobility for low- and moderate-income residents. The award stresses tangible results and recognizes the planning discipline as an important community resource. It emphasizes how creative housing, economic development, and private investments are used in, or in tandem with, a comprehensive community development plan. The HUD Secretary's Opportunity & Empowerment Awards will be presented on April 16th, 2013, at the American Planning Association’s National Planning Conference in Chicago, Illinois.

The Owe’neh Bupingeh Preservation Plan will be recognized with the HUD Secretary's Opportunity and Empowerment Award for the rehabilitation of housing and infrastructure within the historic village center of Ohkay Owingeh, New Mexico. Several hundred homes once surrounded the village center, but only 60 remain, many of which were abandoned due to deterioration. The Owe'neh Bupingeh Rehabilitation Project is a multi-year, affordable housing, rehabilitation project within the historic core at Ohkay Owingeh that aims to balance preservation, housing quality, and green design. The award honors the Ohkay Owingeh’s comprehensive preservation plan that has guided practical housing improvements according to cultural values, such as the rehabilitation of 20 homes using traditional earthen construction methods and the renovation of infrastructure within the village center. The project has successfully provided families with culturally-appropriate, quality affordable housing and has generated tribal discussions of larger cultural preservation issues. The plan has also been heralded as a model planning effort for Native American communities in historic settings.