VANCOUVER, BC--(Marketwired - March 09, 2017) - Students from the University of British Columbia (UBC) have been named the winners of the first Pacific Northwest Real Estate Challenge held in Canada, hosted by TransLink and NAIOP Vancouver. Competing against teams from the University of Washington and Portland State, the students had less than eight weeks to propose a mixed-used, master planned community for TransLink's Coquitlam Central station.

"It was a difficult decision to make, as we were very impressed with all of the proposals from the students," said Guy Akester, Director of Real Estate Programs & Partnerships at TransLink. "Coquitlam Central Station is a very important and critical transportation hub. Ultimately we were looking for a highly walkable, mixed-use site that brings the community together. The UBC students were able to deliver this on all fronts."

The 14th Annual Pacific Northwest Real Estate Challenge matches teams from university real estate programs in a competition focusing on a high profile development project in a major metropolitan area. UBC had previously competed in the Challenge, however this is the first time it's been held in Canada.

"We are ecstatic to be named the winners, and the fact that we won the first competition held in Canada makes us feel extremely proud," said Stephanie Yeargin, UBC Student. "It was very challenging, and we worked around the clock. Coquitlam is a dynamic and growing city, so we hoped that our proposal would be able to meet the needs of the community and of TransLink. We couldn't be more thrilled."

The competing teams saw the site for first time in January and presented their ideas on March 9th, 2017 in front of a panel of judges, TransLink officials, and members of commercial real estate industry at the NAIOP Vancouver Breakfast Event. The winning team was awarded the NAIOP Bob Filley Cup, with the potential to have their plan implemented by TransLink.

"Challenges like these are so important for the students, the real estate industry, and our community," said John Middleton, Vice President at Onni Group and Chair of the Pacific Northwest Real Estate Challenge. "Partnering with TransLink allowed us to showcase Metro Vancouver's growing infrastructure to American universities, as well as offer students direct experience in the fields they plan to pursue once they graduate. We hope to bring more competitions that support the next generation of real estate professionals like this in the future."

Guy Akester and John Middleton, as well as the competing students, are available for interviews.

About the Pacific Northwest Real Estate Challenge

The 14th Annual Pacific Northwest Real Estate Challenge presented by NAIOP matches teams from the real estate programs of multiple Northwest universities in a competition focusing on a high profile development in a major metropolitan area. Each team will work to formulate a proposed development and strategy that may be implemented after the competition. This year Translink and NAIOP have partnered to have students propose plans for Coquitlam Central Station, a 14-acre project with a high volume of transit, residents, and commuters.

About NAIOP Vancouver

The National Association of Industrial and Office Properties (NAIOP) represents the interests of developers and owners of commercial real estate throughout North America. The Vancouver Chapter provides communication, networking and business opportunities for real estate related professionals within the local commercial market. The Association also provides a forum for continuing education and the promotion of effective public policy at all levels of government.

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Media Contact:
Shnane Liem