Future of North Texas Real Estate on Display at Urban Land Institute Showcase

Architects, engineers, developers, and representatives gathered this week to mingle and share projects that will shape the Dallas-Fort Worth built environment in the years to come. 

The future of North Texas real estate took center stage this week at the new Park District PwC Tower in downtown Dallas.

Architects, engineers, developers, and representatives gathered Wednesday to mingle and share projects that will shape the Dallas-Fort Worth built environment in the years to come. 

In a similar manner to a science fair, attendees made their way from table to table to talk with exhibitors, view aerial photos and 3D models, and strap on virtual reality headsets to learn about new developments and technology being utilized in the real estate industry. 

Some developments featured include GFF’s Weir’s Plaza, 5G Studio’s Virgin Hotel, Omniplan’s East Quarter, and Rosewood Property Company’s Heritage Creekside

The Urban Land Institute North Texas’ Young Leaders Group has hosted the showcase for the last decade, but this year’s event focused more on technology, a nod to how tech is impacting the real estate industry. 

” … technology has become such an important part of real estate in terms of energy efficiency and other aspects.” 

Pam Stein

“It’s a development showcase, so we’ve been more focused on the real estate side, but technology has become such an important part of real estate in terms of energy efficiency and other aspects. I think it makes a lot of sense to bring the technology sector in,” said ULINT Executive Director Pam Stein.

Stein said the event has grown tremendously over the years in size and attendance. This year, the showcase featured its largest number of exhibits and had more than 250 attendees.

Trammell Crow Co. provided the venue for the event in its new two-tower, mixed-use Park District development near Klyde Warren Park. The company broke ground in 2016 and completed the project this year. In total, the development spans more than 900,000 square feet and includes office space, restaurants, and residences.

Here’s a look at how companies with local ties are using tech and data to reshape real estate development: 

RefineRE’s product display of its portfolio intelligence platform.


With headquarters in Dallas and New York City, RefineRE is a SaaS cloud-based portfolio intelligence platform that enables commercial real estate occupiers and advisors to make data-driven decisions about their real estate portfolio. The platform ties together disparate data sources from within client organizations and through a data exchange for occupiers called Deep Well so clients can also access real-time labor and market data. RefineRE launched in July 2017, and has recorded more than $70 million in cost savings and avoidance for its clients. In October 2017, RefineRE was accepted into the Dallas startup accelerator Tech Wildcatters. The company is gearing up for the release of a new product this year that will create efficiencies in automating the commercial real estate transaction management process.  

Members of Mitsubishi Electric’s Elevator/Escalator southern division

Mitsubishi Electric

Last February, Mitsubishi Electric opened a new office for its Cooling & Heating and Elevator & Escalator divisions in Coppell. The company’s elevators and escalators are currently operating in 90 countries. Representatives from the company exhibited its spiral escalator at the ULI event this week. By intermixing vertical and rotational movements, Mitsubishi Electric created the world’s first spiral escalators. The company has installed two spiral escalators in Las Vegas, one at The Forum Shops at Caesars and one at the Wynn resort and casino, as well as one at the Bloomberg building in New York.

studioOutside landscape architect Ellen Calhoun


The Dallas landscape architect company founded in 2010, focuses on connecting urban fabrics with green spaces. Some of firm’s projects include work at the Dallas Museum of Art, Legacy West in Plano, the McKinney Residences, and Circle T Ranch in Westlake. Its most recent development, the new Dallas Cowboys’ headquarters multi-use center in Frisco, features a layered streetscape of planting, pedestrian spaces, fountains, lawns, and event areas. studioOutisde works to incorporate technology into its designs, such as providing WiFi in its spaces.  

Representatives from Terracon’s Dallas office


Terracon’s Dallas office displayed a run down of its geotechnical consulting service. Terracon retrieves data for its clients from its vast database of historical information using a proprietary GIS platform and combines that history with public domain information to produce a consultation of an expected subsurface before taking a soil sample. This information helps develop a workplan for geophysical exploration of a site. Terracon currently has several projects in Frisco.


Photos by Yvena Chowdhury.

Alexis Kanter, event chair, and Pam Stein, executive director of ULINT

5G Studio displayed images of its plans for a new Virgin Hotel in Dallas.

Ryan Turner, CEO of RefineRE

Consulting firm mma’s model on display. The firm’s design team utilizes GIS and drone technology to analyze sites and implements a 3D model/BIM based design on all projects.

Mallory Mullen, Trammell Crow Company’s DFW business unit project coordinator, speaks about the company’s new Park District development.

Fetch team members

Rosewood Property Company’s Heritage Creekside team

The Beck Group uses virtual reality to show projects to clients.

Representatives from the Las Colinas Association, one of the event’s sponsors.

Representatives from Parkway Construction

Parkway Construction gives event attendees the opportunity to view projects through a VR headset.

Event attendees view images from developments across the DFW area.

A representative from The Beck Group

Event attendees make their way through exhibits lining the sixth floor of the PwC Tower.

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