Tapping the Best

By on February 8, 2019

From St. Louis Post-Dispatch:  Interstate 64 at Illinois Highway 159 is the busiest intersection of any road south of Interstate 80 in Illinois with a traffic count of 75,000 cars a day. It also marks the spot of an enigma — the seemingly well-placed but struggling Fairview Heights Plaza shopping center. The retail center fell into receivership following the Great Recession, but this spring it will be re-energized with a family entertainment anchor thanks in part to some of the best minds in real estate provided through the Urban Land Institute St. Louis.

A long-standing public perception is that the St. Louis region tends to struggle with cooperative efforts to strengthen communities. The Urban Land Institute St. Louis is demonstrating otherwise with its technical assistance panels. In spring 2018, the city of Fairview Heights engaged a technical assistance panel to explore how to revitalize Fairview Heights Plaza and 72 acres of undeveloped land to the north. It was an easy sell to the Wall Street owners of the retail center because the institute is the gold standard of smart land use.

The Urban Land Institute’s membership includes some of the most talented people in real estate development. In the case of our panel, that was Richmond Heights City Manager Amy Hamilton, Lawrence Group Senior Associate Angie Eslinger, Green Street Development Group Vice President Brian Pratt, Bi-State Development Associate Project Manager Liza Farr, PGAV Project Manager Adam Stroud and Urban Planning and Economic Development Senior Consultant Robert Lewis.

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