4 Dilemmas of Development

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Public and private developers often find that community organizations, citizens and special interest groups are well informed and active, and clearly want a role in defining what happens in their communities. Today’s developer must find an efficient way to tap into the positive energy in the community and focus it on helping to make the project successful.

Do any of these sound familiar?

Dilemma #1–
You have a parcel that you feel is ripe for development. Local market conditions seem favorable. You want to move forward but you are not quite sure what development option should be pursued—high rise condos, single family housing, mixed use or office space? You wonder which option will generate excitement, interest and support from the community.

Dilemma #2–
Your firm, neighborhood group or community has an old building that needs renovation or an underdeveloped block looking for a new use. You have an idea that you think could turn this into an opportunity to create a real asset for the community, and provide an excellent return on your investment as well. You realize that others may have differing views and would like to know what the community and neighborhood wants or will accept.

Dilemma #3–
You know what you want to create on your property. The market is right and you believe your idea will be financially successful. However, you are aware that the neighborhood’s residents have been very vocal in their opposition to the type of development you are considering. They have proven difficult and seem full of NIMBY sentiments. You are at a loss as to how you can create buy-in for your project.

Dilemma #4 –
Your project has just been blasted by citizens at the Planning Commission meeting, and the local media is not casting your project in a positive light. It looks like it will be a LONG road to approval if you get there at all. You wonder if it is too late to generate public support and eliminate or reduce the NIMBYS. How can you create support at this late date without losing all that you have invested so far?

The Solution

Christensen Design Management helps you work through these types of development dilemmas by bringing together advocates, opponents, and others interested in the opportunity to brainstorm ideas and help define solutions. We work with you to identify key stakeholders (e.g., neighbors, realtors, bankers, builders, government officials, retailers, tenants and architects) that have an interest in your project, and invite them to participate in an intensive, focused and solution-oriented workshop known as a “charrette”.

During the workshop, which may take from one to five days, paricipants are led through a process that allows them to explore their issues, concerns, and ideas, and brainstorm solutions. Complex concepts and processes are clearly broken down with drawings, flow charts, and maps. Sources of conflict are quickly identified and resolved. The structure of the workshop allows people to openly, and honestly examine the issues at hand, and identify an outcome that is acceptable to all in a time efficient manner.

Christensen Design Management conducts workshops that:

•    Are solution oriented
•    Produce visible results
•    Engage stakeholders
•    Create buy-in
•    Save time and money

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