coUrbanize in the News


coUrbanize Named to BostInno’s “19 Boston Startups to Watch in 2019”

December 11, 2018

Thanks to coUrbanize’s dramatic growth in 2018 and the company’s work with JBG Smith in Crystal City, Virginia, future site of Amazon’s HQ2, BostInno selected coUrbanize as one of the 19 startups to watch in the coming year.

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Government Technology

The Online Tools Detroit Is Using to Support Sustainability

December 6, 2018

Detroit may be behind on rolling out a full sustainability action agenda, but the city is agile and catching up fast with a new set of digital tools to foster engagement among the community. To get input from Detroiters, they’re using a set of digital tools from coUrbanize.

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coUrbanize is Working with Crystal City Developer JBG Smith to Shape Amazon’s HQ2

November 19, 2018

Boston may not have been selected as a site of Amazon’s second headquarters, but this Boston-area startup is playing a key role in shaping the future of Crystal City, one of the two locations for HQ2. coUrbanize is working with developer JBG Smith, which owns most of the real estate in Crystal City, Virginia, to collect community input that will shape Arlington’s HQ2.

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Real Estate Forum

coUrbanize founder & CEO Karin Brandt named to Real Estate Forum’s 50 Under 40 in Commercial Real Estate

October 30, 2018

The editors of Real Estate Forum have selected coUrbanize Founder & CEO Karin Brandt as one of this year’s 50 Under 40 honorees.

Chosen from a pool of nearly 400 highly qualified nominations, the rising stars who made the short list are already establishing their presence in the industry. Under Brandt’s leadership, coUrbanize has become one of the leading online community engagement platforms for real estate for such firms as Boston Properties, WinnCompanies, Brookfield and many others.

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Washington Business Journal

Want to back a development but can’t testify? This cottage industry makes it easy.

October 18, 2018

When JBG Smith Properties began planning Crystal City’s Central District, the developer wanted feedback from a broad segment of the community on the multifaceted project — not just the typical handful of citizens who have the time to testify at public hearings.

JBG Smith Executive Vice President Andrew Van Horn said the company found a fix: Boston-based coUrbanize, whose technology platform allows developers to gather feedback from community members via text, social media and comments posted in online forums.

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GlobeSt logo

Tech Tools and Affordable Housing

September 27, 2018

Affordable housing developers are facing greater constraints, both financially and from NIMBYs, and at the same time the need for affordable housing is increasing. In this Q&A, spoke with Karin Brandt, coUrbanize founder & CEO, and Laura Bailey, head of community finance and community affairs at Capital One Bank about how developers can do a better job of bringing the community in to conversations affecting their neighborhoods.

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Detroit News logo

Detroit to engage residents on citywide sustainability plan

June 14, 2018

The Sustainability Action Agenda is Detroit’s first effort to carve out city and community actions aimed at protecting public health, providing jobs and addressing climate impacts and green infrastructure.

The city will be conducting surveys, hosting town halls and engaging in community outreach through 14 district ambassadors to gather input from at least 7,000 Detroiters, officials said.

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Aspen Institute logo

‘People Need To Feel That Their Feedback Has Been Heard, That People Are Very Responsive To Their Contributions, That It Matters. That’s Ultimately What It’s About.’

April 26, 2018

Karin Brandt, the founder and CEO of coUrbanize, spoke with Jennifer Bradley of the Aspen Institute for the Center for Urban Innovation’s series of conversations with inclusive innovation practitioners.

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Fast Company

This site lets you have a voice in urban planning without attending inconvenient meetings

February 15, 2018

coUrbanize opens up public comment to everyone, not just the few people who are able to go to planning meetings.

In Seattle’s Central District, a plan for a massive new development with hundreds of apartments and a high-end grocer fell through in 2017, in part because of criticism about gentrification and displacement of the neighborhood’s shrinking black community. But in late January, a new developer easily got city approval for another design for the site with more affordable housing, a public square, and a portion of retail space dedicated to local businesses.

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The Boston Globe

Rising from Boston’s building boom, a new kind of startup

February 9, 2018

Boston has been Crane City for the last five years or more: construction everywhere you look, and detour signs, too.

Much less noticeable has been a boom in startups focused on buildings. Entrepreneurs are looking at a massive industry and seeing opportunity: Construction spending on private projects in the United States hit a record high of $1.25 trillion in December, according to the Commerce Department. And while that enormous number includes everything from architectural design to laying bricks, it doesn’t include the cost of renting out the space or managing it once the work is complete. That equals even more opportunity for entrepreneurs.

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Creating a Better Community Through Text Messages

June 14, 2017

As cities make their data more transparent and accountable, this project in New York found one way to use technology to engage the residents in the planning process—by prompting locals to text in ideas.

“I’d like to buy culturally conscious books and cards that represent me,” writes one commenter. A few others keep their requests for Brownsville, Brooklyn, pretty simple—a Burger King or a Chase Bank would do.

These are comments left by residents of Brownsville in response to a prompt to tell city officials “what’s missing” in their neighborhood. The answers populated an online map, a tool used by New York’s Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) in a new planning project. Earlier this month, Mayor de Blasio and the HPD released the Brownsville Plan, an outcome of a year’s worth of planning by the community and municipality, which will create 2,500 new affordable homes and spruce up the neighborhood’s cultural and recreational facilities. According to the comments on the map, these are very welcome additions.

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At East Lake MARTA, TOD plans could include up to 500 homes, greenspace

December 12, 2017

A new survey posted on MARTA’s dedicated transit-oriented development website, coUrbanize, offers Atlantans a potential glimpse at the future of acres of parking surrounding the East Lake MARTA Station.

And your input could help shape what actually happens there.

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