Monday, February 1, 2010

ULI Madness, 2010 version

So we have shipped our submission for the 2010 ULI Urban Design Competition.  The architecture, landscape architecture, and urban design folks have pulled an all-nighter.  We've tweaked and fixed and gone over everything a million times, and finally had to just stop and mail the damn thing.  Like last year, I had the opportunity to work with some fantastic folks at Georgia Tech and I had a great time on the project.  The team this year was Luke Wilkinson, Claire Thompson, Louis Johnson, Jason Combs, and myself.

Last year I just posted the pretty pictures from the submission, but this year I'm putting up the entire submission and my pro forma summary board.  This year's site was in the East Village in San Diego.  You can see photos of the site here.  The challenge was to come up with a new catalyst for a distressed urban area given current market conditions.  The site seemed to have every active fault line in San Diego, as well.

As far as our submission goes, I'll just let the boards speak for themselves.  Click the pic below for a full-scale version of our submission.

[UPDATE:  The submissions that go to the ULI are judged blind.  While we are all very proud of the work we did, we decided it'd be best to take down the images in the rare case that someone at ULI is on the interwebs reading this little blog.  I'll put the images up later on in the year after judging is done.]

A few notes on the pro forma board - the ULI competition tries to use current market conditions, but it is very difficult to be realistic about things like rental rates, absorption rates, and constructions costs and still be able to present anything to actually develop.  It is fundamentally and Urban Design competition, not a real estate development competition.  The plans need to be relatively feasible, but the financial analysis portion is used to support the design/planning component.

Additionally, the ULI competition uses a heavily simplified pro forma that does not include most of the details and costs that I would normally include in a development pro forma.  Past winners have used what I considered unrealistic assumptions. So, the pro forma below is designed for what I refer to as "ULI world," and is not representative of types of assumptions or the level of detail I would typically go into for an analysis.

[UPDATE: Like with the design boards, the pro forma has been taken down for the time being.]

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