Apgar Urban Land Award

“These winners exemplify ULI's tradition of producing and sharing expert information on land use and real estate issues."

Patrick L. Phillips, ULI Chief Executive Officer

The ULI Apgar Urban Land Award was started in the 1990s by longtime ULI member and governor Mahlon Apgar IV in order to highlight and recognize the quality of writing in Urban Land magazine. The award was designed as a prize for industry practice articles that clearly communicate ideas, knowledge, research, and expertise for the benefit of the entire real estate community. A $500 honorarium is presented for the winning articles, judged on the criteria of relevance to current land use and development issues; strength of the authors’ analysis; perceptiveness of the authors’ reasoning; clarity of presentation; and overall contribution to the advancement of ULI’s mission and priorities.

Presented from 1991 to 2006 and returning in 2012, the award is intended to encourage entrepreneurs, executives, and professionals to communicate their ideas, knowledge, research, and experience for the benefit of the entire real estate community.

ULI Announces Winners of 2014 Apgar Urban Land Awards

The Urban Land Institute announced joint recipients of the 2014 ULI Apgar Urban Land Award at ULI’s Spring Meeting in Vancouver, British Columbia.

This year’s winning authors are Rives Taylor, a principal at Gensler, whose article “Minimizing Risk in an Era of Resilience” appeared in the January/February 2013 issue; and a team at ELS Architecture and Urban Design—principal D. Jamie Rusin, director of retail and mixed use Sean Slater, and senior associate Ryan Call—who cowrote “New Suburbanism: Reinventing Inner-Ring Suburbs” for the May/June 2013 issue.

Rives Taylor

Rives Taylor


D. Jamie Rusin, Sean Slater, and Ryan Call.

“This year’s ULI Apgar Urban Land Award winners tackled two key issues which are topical to ULI’s mission—resilience and suburban infill development,” said ULI Chief Executive Officer Patrick L. Phillips. “Both articles combined interesting insights with practical advice to provide readers with not only an interesting read, but also with ideas they could implement in their own organization.”

Taylor’s piece, “Minimizing Risk in an Era of Resilience,” highlights the impact of natural disasters on the built environment and provides practical advice for real estate investors and developers on how they can mitigate risk. The article is divided into what property owners need to consider depending on whether they are reviewing an existing asset, acquiring a new property, or assessing a development opportunity. The article also examines larger investments such as master-planned developments.

The winning article from the ELS Architecture and Urban Design team focused on the opportunities and challenges for infill mixed-use development in inner-ring suburbs across the United States. “New Suburbanism: Reinventing Inner-Ring Suburbs” uses examples of best practices from across the country to examine a wide range of issues, including mixed-use design challenges, creating an authentic environment, and new approaches to incorporating cars and parking into pedestrian-friendly design.

ULI 2013 Apgar Urban Land Award

Selected articles from the previous calendar year—written by Jason S. Hellendrung, principal, Urban Studio at Sasaki, and Howard J. Kozloff, managing partner, Agora Partners—were selected as recipients of the recognition.

Jason S. Hellendrung (left) and Howard J. Kozloff

“These winners exemplify ULI’s tradition of producing and sharing expert information on land use and real estate issues,” said ULI Chief Executive Officer Patrick L. Philips. “They are smart reads backed up by balanced reporting and scientific research. Both articles are refreshing examples of reliable writing in an age of information overload.”

Hellendrung’s winning piece, “HealthLine Drives Growth in Cleveland,” explores the shifting role of the private sector in advancing transit in downtown Cleveland. The HealthLine, the city’s bus rapid transit (BRT) system, has stimulated economic growth along the historic Euclid Avenue since it opened in 2008. Hellendrung’s article describes how the project—involving a diverse partnership of public, private, nonprofit, and neighborhood interests—devised a strategy of catalyzing growth by designing a bus system that emulates a rail line. As a result, Cleveland planners have revised the way they view the link among transportation, jobs, housing, and business.

Kozloff was selected as an award winner for his Urban Land story that made the case for urban parks providing a measurable bump in value and competitive advantage for real estate properties. “The Payoff from Parks” cites specific case studies and empirical research that support the argument that public space can create a property premium for lots within several hundred feet of a green space. Kozloff attributes this to a market demand for interaction, which translates into more retail shoppers and revenue for retail investors. In turn, this increase in activity attracts tenants and increases property value for residential development.

Currently, Hellendrung directs landscape architecture, planning, and urban design work for a range of projects at Sasaki. Some of his current projects include the citywide Parks Master Plan for Hartford, Connecticut; the redesign of Chaparral Street in downtown Corpus Christi, Texas; and the White Flint Redevelopment in North Bethesda, Maryland. One of his notable accomplishments was his time as project manager of the urban design and landscape architecture for the HealthLine BRT and transformation of Euclid Avenue in Cleveland.

In addition to his role at Agora Partners, Kozloff is a lecturer at the University of Pennsylvania. He is the former director of HH Development Strategies and director of operations at Hart Howerton, an international planning, design, and development advisory firm. Before Hart Howerton, he held positions at both the Martin Group and Macerich and previously lectured at Columbia University and the University of Southern California.

ULI 2012 Apgar Urban Land Award

Jeffrey Spivak, senior researcher at HNTB and regular contributor to Urban Land magazine, was named the 2012 winner at ULI’s Spring Meeting in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Spivak’s article in Urban Land’s May/June 2011 issue, titled “Seniors’ Housing Acquisitions,” examines how a series of recent blockbuster acquisition deals is transforming the seniors’ housing property sector and why some of the industry’s largest ownership groups are pursuing newer and riskier growth opportunities. This sector, once a solid and safe investment, has experienced consolidation and partnership surges in health care and seniors’ housing real estate investment trusts (REITs). Spivak explains how changes in federal tax law and expectations that the elderly population will jump 36 percent by 2020 are both major reasons why investors see growth potential for seniors’ housing. However, Spivak warns that such changes will make a sector that traditionally has been resistant to economic downturns more sensitive to both economic down cycles and potential cuts in Medicare and Medicaid reimbursements.

Spivak has been with HNTB since 2008 and is a regular contributor to publications dedicated to the built environment, including APA’s Planning. He is the author of two books about Kansas City—one about the 1985 World Series and another about Union Station. Before his time at HNTB, he was a civic affairs reporter at the Kansas City Star from 1985 to 2008.

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2014 Winners
“Minimizing Risk in an Era of Resilience”
By Sean Taylor

“New Suburbanism: Reinventing Inner-Ring Suburbs”
By D. Jamie Rusin; Sean Slater; and Ryan Call

2013 Winners
HealthLine Drives Growth in Cleveland
by Jason Hellendrung

The Payoff from Parks
by Howard Kozloff

2012 Winner
Seniors’ Housing Acquisitions
by Jeffrey Spivak

For additional information, contact awards@uli.org.