Author: Kathleen McCormick

Kathleen McCormick, principal of Fountainhead Communications LLC in Boulder, Colorado, is a writer and editor focused on sustainable design and the environment.

Articles by Kathleen McCormick

  • Addressing Commercial Real Estate’s Pipeline-to-Profession Problem in Key U.S. Markets
    Published on May 15, 2021 in Inside ULI
    In 2009, ULI Colorado and Denver’s Office of Economic Development collaborated to begin a pilot program for the Real Estate Diversity Initiative (REDI), an early model for the Institute’s ongoing diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts.  The program has since expanded to eight other district councils, serving more than 700 graduates to date.
  • Arizona Trends Day Session Focuses on Health Care Innovation
    Published on April 10, 2020 in Trends
    Innovations in medicine and trends in health care delivery are affecting the design and development of health-related facilities, services, and amenities in Arizona, panelists said during the “The Future of Healthcare and Biotechnology” session at the 2020 ULI Arizona Trends Day.
  • Activated Spaces Are Key to the Designs of the Future of Office, Residential, and Retail
    Published on March 23, 2020 in Planning & Design
    Panelists at the 2020 ULI Arizona Trends Day discussed how they are reducing the focus on abundant parking to provide more walkable open space which can be activated. One transit-oriented development in Tempe is billing itself as "car free" as it emphasizes bike lanes, walking, and access to light rail.
  • How Arizona Developers Are Building for Future Job Growth
    Published on March 16, 2020 in Development
    With Arizona continuing to be among the U.S. leaders in job growth, several of the state’s most successful retail, office, and mixed-use residential developers discussed the opportunities of the past decade at a ULI Arizona event.
  • What U.S. Cities Are Learning from Copenhagen’s Evolution
    Published on August 08, 2019 in Sustainability
    In June, a group of 125 of Denver’s public-, private-, and nonprofit-sector leaders came to study Copenhagen’s brand of sustainable urbanism with the Denver Downtown Partnership (DDP) Urban Exploration program. The DDP study group included 61 members of ULI Colorado, Denver Mayor Michael B. Hancock, several Denver City Council members, and city and county staff members. The study tour explored the city of Copenhagen “through three lenses: livability, equity, and economic innovation, in which growth goes hand-in-hand with quality of life,” said one official.
  • Investing in Public Spaces to Make Placemaking a Value-Add
    Published on March 04, 2019 in Planning & Design
    At ULI Arizona’s Trends Day in January, panelists talked about how revitalized public spaces—starting with parks and libraries but also including alleys, sidewalks, and roads—are helping make neighborhoods walkable and desirable.
  • Building More with Less: Which Innovations Could Reduce Construction Costs?
    Published on February 19, 2019 in Planning & Design
    Better collaboration and integration for design and construction, combined with more building off site and using new technology and collective metrics to innovate, show promise in reducing the cost of construction, said panelists speaking at the ULI Arizona Trends Day held recently in Phoenix.
  • Finding the Right Product Types for Housing the Fast-Growing Population of Phoenix
    Published on February 11, 2019 in Development
    As one of the fastest growing and most populous metropolitan areas in the United States, the Phoenix metro area has seen some 40,000 apartments built since 2010, with demand and prices continuing to rise. Panelists speaking at the ULI Arizona Trends Day in Phoenix provided a glimpse of how different product types are filling needs for the housing-strapped region.
  • Differentiating a Coworking Offering with a Female Focus
    Published on February 04, 2019 in Development
    Speaking at ULI Arizona’s Trends Day, held in January at the JW Marriott Phoenix Desert Ridge in Phoenix, an entrepreneur described how there is still room for differentiation in the growing shared-workspace industry.
  • Planning for Equitable Transit-Oriented Development in Sacramento
    Published on November 12, 2018 in Planning & Design
    A ULI Advisory Services panel toured South Sacramento, California, in September, meeting with more than 75 city and county officials, local business leaders, residents, and other stakeholders. The four sponsors—Sacramento Regional Transit, Sacramento Council of Governments, Sacramento Municipal Utility District, and Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District—asked the ULI advisory panel to outline a plan for kick-starting a retrofit of the two transit-adjacent neighborhoods into transit-oriented neighborhoods. Their goals were to promote equitable, healthy, and inclusive community development that fosters job and income growth, housing options, and healthy neighborhood amenities with more convenient access to transit, retail, and services.
  • Smaller Floor Plans, Focus on Customer Experience Help Reinvent Retail in Denver
    Published on September 04, 2018 in Development
    Retailers are focusing their physical presences on offering excellent customer service and curation of products, said panelists at a ULI Colorado event in Denver. The event itself was held at the Dairy Block, an example of new retail projects that are animating both commercial and public spaces with experimental and experiential places for people to shop, eat, drink, be entertained, and find community.
  • Building Homes for the “Missing Middle” in Denver
    Published on April 16, 2018 in Planning & Design
    High construction costs and low inventories are driving home prices ever higher in some of America’s fastest-growing cities, said panelists speaking at a recent ULI Colorado event.
  • Making Multitenant Net Zero Work in Colorado
    Published on April 09, 2018 in Sustainability
    A 100,000-square-foot (9,300 sq m) project in an emerging transit district in Boulder, Colorado, is making the business case for net-zero-energy (NZE) multitenant leased office buildings, including lower operating costs, higher profits, reduced carbon emissions, better recruitment and retention for tenants, and happier, healthier, and more productive employees. The new $40 million Boulder Commons, a mixed-use office/restaurant/retail project in two adjacent buildings, is one of the largest NZE multitenant commercial buildings in the United States, according to New Buildings Institute (NBI) data.
  • Orange County: Where Master-Planned Communities Reign
    Published on October 23, 2017 in Planning & Design
    With extensive parkland, trails, mixed uses, housing variety, and amenities, the county’s MPCs draw buyers from nearby—and across the sea.
  • Remaking Greater Los Angeles as a Transit-Oriented Region
    Published on September 11, 2017 in Development
    Supported by a new half-cent tax that could fund an estimated $120 billion worth of public transit improvements over the next 40 years, the region is ramping up the creation of TODs not only in downtown, but also along transit lines further out.
  • Transforming Inner-Ring Suburbs with Walkable Mixed-Use Development
    Published on August 21, 2017 in Development
    U.S. suburbs are changing in cities such as Denver, where new transit lines and placemaking efforts around walkable mixed-use neighborhoods are creating communities more similar to the urban core, said speakers at a ULI Colorado event.
  • Legalized Marijuana Sector Creates Opportunity, Special Requirements
    Published on May 12, 2017 in Development
    Commercialized marijuana is big business and is expanding as a new asset class at an astronomical rate, according to a ULI Spring Meeting panel of industry investors, operators, and legal experts on the state of the cannabis business and real estate opportunities being created in the sector. Twenty-eight states have legalized the sale of medical marijuana, and eight states plus the District of Columbia allow recreational marijuana to some degree.
  • The Housing Paradox: Why Can’t Cities Build Enough Housing to Match Job Growth?
    Published on May 10, 2017 in Development
    Why do cities with the fastest-growing economies—including Seattle, San Francisco, New York City, and Austin--suffer from a growing imbalance between job growth and housing supply? A panel at the ULI 2017 Spring Meeting in Seattle examined why hot-market cities are failing to build enough housing for new workers, often by staggering ratios.
  • Three Projects Helping to House Seattle’s Growing Population
    Published on April 27, 2017 in Development
    Seattle developers are trying to keep pace with the demand for urban living with an explosion of new multifamily projects.
  • Six Noteworthy Developments Changing the Face of Seattle
    Published on April 24, 2017 in Development
    Cranes fill the sky and construction crews complicate navigation through Seattle’s streets as development projects downtown and in other close-in urban neighborhoods usher in a higher and denser city.
  • Millennials’ Preferences Are Good News for Mixed-Income Development
    Published on March 29, 2017 in Development
    With Denver’s population expanding from about 470,000 in 1990 to 700,000 today, many longtime residents in some gentrifying neighborhoods find it difficult to remain as rents, home prices, and property taxes climb. How do communities in other U.S. cities provide for both lower-income families and local culture while being revitalized?
  • Capitalizing on TOD
    Published on December 08, 2016 in Development
    As the Denver metropolitan area has topped 3 million residents, potentially accelerating toward 4 million, a sustainable land use template for future mobility and economic, social, and environmental health is emerging within the framework of the 122-mile (196 km) FasTracks rail and bus rapid transit network, which includes expansion with five new transit lines this year. A ULI Colorado event in early November attracted participants from Colorado and beyond to tour various transit-oriented development sites and hear about lessons learned and future trends.
  • Making the Investment Case for Smarter Urban Growth
    Published on November 22, 2016 in Sustainability
    Compact, well-connected urban development can create vibrant cities that are more competitive, inclusive, and resilient and that have lower carbon footprints.
  • Repurposing Two Former Downtown Industrial Sites
    Published on November 21, 2016 in Economy, Market & Trends
    Two case studies on how obsolete industrial buildings have been redeveloped for a new life in the new economy—the focus of this 2016 ULI Fall Meeting session—offered lessons about capitalizing on site location, the buildings’ qualities, and the developers’ visions for creating dynamic mixed-use places that are profitable as well as mission driven.
  • Bringing Healthier Commercial Corridors to Four U.S. Cities
    Published on November 08, 2016 in Sustainability
    During a session at the 2016 ULI Fall Meeting, panelists involved in the ULI Healthy Corridors project discussed strategies for transforming unsafe, unattractive, and poorly connected commercial corridors into thriving places that further the goal of creating healthy and economically vibrant communities.
  • ULI Leaders Share Their Legacies and Origins
    Published on November 07, 2016 in Development
    In the ULI NEXT Global “Legacies and Leadership” session at the 2016 ULI Fall Meeting, three lions of the industry, all former ULI chairs, shared lessons learned from their careers in real estate—their inspirations, insights, challenges, and how their work has shaped their values and vision for the Institute’s future.
  • View from the Top: Branching Out from the Family Business
    Published on November 07, 2016 in Development
    At the 2016 ULI Fall Meeting in Dallas, the ULI Women’s Leadership Initiative (WLI) presented a candid conversation with Lucy C. Billingsley, cofounder and partner of the Billingsley Company, an award-winning land development and property management firm based in Dallas with 3,200 acres (1,300 ha) of master-planned communities, as well as office parks and industrial and retail projects. The daughter of the legendary Trammell Crow, Billingsley has real estate in her DNA.
  • Optimism, Resilience Are Keys to Building Stronger Communities
    Published on November 07, 2016 in Development
    Optimism is “not something you do, but rather a spirit you bring to everything you do,” keynote speaker Steve Gross, a clinical social worker and founder of the Life is Good Kids Foundation, told ULI members at a 2016 ULI Fall Meeting general session. Gross, the foundation’s “chief playmaker,” shared his thoughts on optimism and offered practical advice for cultivating an optimistic and playful spirit, based on his work with children who have experienced traumas.
  • How TOD Is Fueling Growth in Southern Dallas
    Published on August 31, 2016 in Development
    Southern Dallas, which was physically and economically separated from downtown after the construction of Interstate 30 in the 1960s, is undergoing a renaissance focused on transit-oriented development.
  • New Ways to Bring Healthier Food to Underserved Places
    Published on April 29, 2016 in Sustainability
    Philadelphia is proud of its food culture and has a great restaurant scene in Center City. But outside the center, the city of 1.6 million has a 26 percent poverty rate and a need for affordable healthy food.
  • More Open Space, Walkability, and Multifamily Are Future of Suburbs
    Published on April 29, 2016 in Spring Meeting
    “Suburbs isn’t a dirty word,” declared Adam F. Ducker, RCLCO managing director and moderator of the “Next Stop Suburbs” session at the ULI Spring Meeting in Philadelphia.
  • Expansion of Bike Infrastructure Fuels Growth of Multimodal Transit
    Published on April 29, 2016 in Infrastructure
    The big picture in transportation and real estate trends is the growth of multiple transportation modes, shared uses of bikes and cars, and enormous expansions of bike infrastructure that are driving real estate investments and urban growth, according to experts who spoke at a 2016 ULI Spring Meeting session in Philadelphia recently.
  • Understanding Consumers: Spending without Owning, Living Large While Carrying Little
    Published on April 26, 2016 in Economy, Market & Trends
    What consumers want is to “live large and carry little,” said generational marketing expert J. Walker Smith, executive chairman of the Futures Company, in a 2016 ULI Spring Meeting session moderated by ULI Global CEO Patrick L. Phillips.
  • Connecting Food and the Built Environment in New Orleans
    Published on March 16, 2016 in Sustainability
    A renewed focus on food is providing a bounty of innovations in real estate, attendees of the ULI Food and Real Estate Forum learned while sharing development experiences, with discussions including enhancing health, food security, and social equity.
  • Where Will U.S. Multifamily Go Next?
    Published on November 25, 2015 in Residential/Multifamily
    U.S. multifamily has been outperforming other sectors for much of the recession recovery period and enjoying unprecedented capital investment flows from around the globe.
  • A Healthier, More Connected Future for Underperforming Commercial Corridors
    Published on November 23, 2015 in Sustainability
    How can urban and suburban arterials be reenvisioned as healthy places, with more housing, better transportation options, appealing land use patterns, and reinvigorated retail centers?
  • Success Factors for Modern Master-Planned Communities
    Published on November 02, 2015 in Planning & Design
    What’s creative and different in modern master-planned communities (MPCs) was the focus of a ULI Fall Meeting panel that shared lessons learned from conception, launch, and execution of new MPCs. “We’re trying to create ‘the new real,’ ” said Susan Hebel Watts, vice president of real estate development for WestRock, which is building four MPCs outside of Charleston, South Carolina.
  • Creating a Culture of Safer and Healthier Environments
    Published on October 19, 2015 in Sustainability
    “It’s time to make a shift and recalibrate our choices to make the healthy choice the easy choice, and to make health the choice for a better America,” declared Risa Lavizzo-Mourey, president and CEO of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the nation’s largest foundation devoted to health, at the Changing World Speaker Series: Sustainability, Resilience, and Health during the 2015 ULI Fall Meeting in San Francisco.
  • Cottle Transit Village: Dense Mixed Use in San Jose
    Published on September 25, 2015 in Planning & Design
    Walkable streetscapes, housing, and other uses are coming to the sprawling Silicon Valley city.
  • Creating Healthier Food and Beverage Experiences in Retail
    Published on November 07, 2014 in Economy, Market & Trends
    At the ULI Fall Meeting, panelists discussed the shifting role of food and beverage offerings at retail centers. With more and more purchases occurring online, panelists explained how food has emerged as the big draw from Australia to New York City.
  • Housing and Health: From Research to Real Deals
    Published on November 04, 2014 in Sustainability
    Panelists advocated for policies leading to healthier lives, built on a platform of affordable, green, and community-oriented housing at the 2014 ULI Fall Meeting in New York City.
  • MPCs Are Bouncing Back, Adding Health and a Sense of Place
    Published on November 04, 2014 in Economy, Market & Trends
    Panelists at the ULI Fall Meeting session discussed what’s selling in master-planned communities and how to attract buyers with healthy and hip amenities that create a unique sense of character and place.
  • What’s Next for Multigenerational Housing and Intergenerational Communities?
    Published on September 02, 2014 in Development
    In spring 2013, the leadership of two ULI product councils—the Senior Housing Council and the Community Development Council—came together on the idea of exploring an issue that was becoming increasingly important among their council members: intergenerational living.
  • Building for the Generations
    Published on July 28, 2014 in Development
    In many--and sometimes surprising--ways, 55-and-older consumers are seeking the same housing amenities and lifestyles as their youngers.
  • Housing Helps Make Colorado One of the Healthiest States
    Published on June 02, 2014 in Sustainability
    Developers in Colorado—which has a statewide vacancy rate of just 4.5 percent—are responding to increased demands from millennials and baby boomers for housing focused on healthy and intergenerational living, said Patrick Coyle, director of the state’s housing division, at the closing general session of the ULI Housing Opportunity 2014 conference in Denver.
  • Affordable Housing as a Vaccine for Healthier Children
    Published on May 19, 2014 in Sustainability
    Medical professionals are now looking "upstream” to determine how to improve children’s health through housing, said speakers at the ULI Housing Opportunity conference.
  • Building Healthy Places: Doing Well and Good
    Published on November 15, 2013 in Sustainability
    At a panel at the ULI Fall Meeting in Chicago, Anne Warhover, president and chief executive officer of the Colorado Health Foundation (CHF), noted that 90 percent of overall health depends on factors other than healthcare, such as lifestyle choices, education, and income.
  • Making Healthy Places Happen
    Published on November 15, 2013 in Sustainability
    Making healthy places happen requires vision and commitment, according to a panel of ULI J.C. Nichols Prize laureates, who offered insight into the challenges of implementing a healthy living culture.
  • Healthier Work Environments Attracts Top Tenants, Talent
    Published on November 15, 2013 in Sustainability
    Workplaces exist for people and must evolve for them, said Robert Jernigan, principal and managing director for Gensler in Los Angeles, at a panel at the ULI Fall Meeting in Chicago.
  • Incorporating Healthy Practices into New Residential Development
    Published on November 15, 2013 in Sustainability
    Moderator Tim Sullivan, practice leader for Meyers Research LLC, a Kennedy Wilson Company, in Rancho Santa Fe, California, led a session at the ULI Fall Meeting in Chicago with these questions: What do healthy communities look like? What are the components? Can you build them from scratch?
  • P3 in the U.S.: Opportunities for Real Estate Developers
    Published on November 15, 2013 in Infrastructure
    How can governments better collaborate with private developers? As a real estate developer, what kinds of skills and strategies should you bring to P3? These were two of the primary questions addressed by a panel on public-private partnerships at the ULI Fall Meeting in Chicago.
  • Health in Rural Areas: Lamar, Colorado
    Published on August 12, 2013 in Sustainability
    A walk down Main Street in Lamar with a late winter storm blowing in tells a lot about the challenges of trying to exercise in this rural city on the southeastern Colorado plains. Conditions may include 50-mile-per-hour (80 kmph) sandstorms, 18-wheelers blasting past at similar speeds, and for pedestrians, a dangerous situation caused by the lack of sidewalks, bike lanes, and safe crossings on this five-lane roadway, which also serves as U.S. Highway 50/287.
  • Envisioning a City Center—With Nonstop Service to Tokyo
    Published on November 13, 2012 in Infrastructure
    An aerotropolis around Denver International Airport would build on the airport’s access to the world.
  • Linchpin of the West
    Published on August 23, 2012 in Development
    Denver’s historic train station is being re-created as a multimodal transit center, hotel, and shopping venue. And it is already spurring development in the Mile High City.