Building Trust and Sharing Expertise: The Urban Land Institute Selects Recipient of 2012 ULI Apgar Urban Land Award


WASHINGTON, DC – May 18, 2012 – (RealEstateRama) — In recognizing excellence in the practice of sharing knowledge and expertise within the land use and real estate industry, the Urban Land Institute (ULI) has announced the winner of the 2012 ULI Apgar Urban Land Award. Jeffrey Spivak, senior researcher at HNTB and regular contributor to Urban Land magazine, was named the 2012 winner last week at ULI’s Annual Spring Meeting in Charlotte.

The ULI Apgar Urban Land Award recognizes the authors of articles in ULI’s flagship publication – Urban Land magazine – that best contribute to the mission and current priorities of the institute. From 1991 to 2006, and now 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.

“As we are all barraged with tweets, emails, and other shortened forms of communication, at ULI we still take pride in the quality of writing in Urban Land,” said ULI Chief Executive Officer Patrick L. Phillips. “We are honored to award Jeff, whose winning article exemplifies the institute’s commitment to being a leader through the communication of its knowledge and experience to helping build thriving communities across the globe.”

Spivak’s article in Urban Land’s May/June issue, entitled “Seniors’ Housing Acquisitions,” examines how a series of recent blockbuster acquisition deals is transforming the senior 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 senior 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 senior 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 one about Union Station. Prior to his time at HNTB, he was a civic affairs reporter at the Kansas City Star from 1985 to 2008.

The award was started in the 1990s by long-time ULI member and Governor, Mahlon “Sandy” Apgar, 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 article, 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 current priorities.

About the Urban Land Institute
The Urban Land Institute ( is a nonprofit education and research institute supported by its members. Its mission is to provide leadership in the responsible use of land and in sustaining and creating thriving communities worldwide. Established in 1936, the Institute has nearly 30,000 members representing all aspects of land use and development disciplines.

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