A research project funded by architect Belinda Stewart provides a unique fellowship opportunity for the Small Town Center. The Belinda Stewart Fellowship is awarded annually to a senior level architecture student that partners with Belinda Stewart Architects, the Small Town Center and an MSU School of Architecture professor.

The recent fellowship was guided by Professor Silvina Lopez-Barrera and focused on how downtown housing development can help alleviate housing inequality and prevent urban decay. The goal of the project was to develop a series of mixed-use and adaptive reuse building typologies that can be replicated throughout Mississippi small towns. Four towns were selected based on their varying regions, demographics and socio-economic backgrounds: Shelby, Indianola, Sunflower and Ripley. Design proposals were developed for existing buildings and infill residential development in the varied communities. The building typologies included upper floor housing, mixed-income housing, and multi-family housing.

Baleigh Hull was this year’s student fellow and recently won an award for “Designing Affordable Housing in Mississippi” at the MSU Undergraduate Research Symposium.