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National experts to discuss Sustainable City initiatives on Sept. 29

Business, Real Estate
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Mark Stapp

On Sept. 29 at 5 p.m., leading experts will discuss the role real estate will play in leading sustainability initiatives for major cities during the Gerald Fogelson Forum on Real Estate at Roosevelt University, 425 S. Wabash Ave., Chicago.

The program, titled, “What is a Sustainable City and How Do We Develop and Educate to Get There?” will begin with a presentation by Mark S. Stapp (pictured above), the Fred E. Taylor professor of real estate, executive director of the Master of Real Estate Development (MRED) program and director of the Center for Real Estate Theory and Practice at Arizona State University (ASU).
Stapp will share the work underway at ASU since 2004 when Julie Ann Wrigley made a $50 million gift to establish the Global Institute of Sustainability. The university has become a worldwide leader in bringing sustainability practices to cities.   The MRED program has been particularly focused on the role real estate development can play in creating socially and environmentally sustainable places.
After the presentation, Stapp will be joined by a distinguished panel that will discuss the initiatives underway in Chicago and potential collaboration efforts with ASU to understand what truly sustainable places and cities will look like and what needs to be done to build them.
Participating experts are:

• Christopher Groesbeck, AIA, NCARB, LEED AP, principal, VOA now Stantec;  adjunct professor of Urban Design and Architecture, IIT and International Steering Committee, Council of Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat. Groesbeck also was the lead architect for Roosevelt’s 32-story vertical campus in Chicago’s South Loop. Opened in 2012, the Wabash Building, which has classrooms, offices, student services and student housing, received Gold-level LEED certification from the U.S. Green Building Council for the skyscraper’s many significant sustainable features.

• Bill Abolt, vice president-energy – AECOM; previously Abolt was environment commissioner, director of the Office of Budget and Management and chief of management, City of Chicago, responsible for developing the city’s “green city” strategy and adjunct professor of Public Policy and Administration, Northwestern University.

• Aaron Koch, chief resilience officer, City of Chicago, Office of the Mayor, leading Chicago’s partnership with 100 Resilient Cities, funded by The Rockefeller Foundation.  Previously he served as deputy commissioner for Sustainability, Department of Water Management, City of Chicago and senior policy advisor, Office of Planning and Sustainability, New York City.

“The City of Chicago is a leader in innovative environmental initiatives and is recognized as one of the “greenest” cities in the U.S.,” said Jon B. DeVries, director of Roosevelt’s Marshall Bennett Institute of Real Estate. “We’re excited to learn from this combination of academic, industry and government leaders about the possibilities that can be created through partnerships and shared knowledge and expertise.”
“Sustainability is a priority on our campuses. Besides Gold-level LEED -certification and numerous other green campus awards, the University also has been recognized by the city of Chicago and its Retrofit Chicago program as a leader and model of energy efficiency at its historic Auditorium Building,” said DeVries.

The Gerald Fogelson Forum on Real Estate was founded in 1999 to provide industry professionals and students an opportunity to participate in discussions and presentations by leaders in all areas of commercial real estate development.

The forum begins with a 5 p.m. reception with refreshments and hors d’oeuvres. The panel discussion will follow from 5:30 p.m. to 6:45 p.m. in the Wabash Building, Room 418.  Cost is $25 per person for industry professionals and the public and is free to students and faculty.

For more information on the event and registration, please call 312-281-3269 or visit:

Since its founding in 2002, the Marshall Bennett Institute of Real Estate has grown to become one of the largest graduate real estate programs in the country with more than 50 current students and over 750 graduates. Degrees that are offered include the Master of Business Administration with a concentration in Real Estate and the Master of Science in Real Estate.

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