The Greater Good

By Stephen L. Burger, CPM, CRX, CRM

Last week, I blogged in this space about the driverless car and the changes it will work--it is working--on the real estate industry. The blog was based on a news piece we ran recounting the research done by Terence O’Connell and Wes Guckert for the Urban Land Institute.

Our first priority in last week’s blog was to make that technology/real estate connection, because the impact of one on the other isn’t always readily discernible. But this week, we can focus on another impact O’Connell and Guckert mention in passing:

“By traveling closer together and in narrower lanes,” they write, “autonomous vehicles could support the same traffic volume as human-driven cars on one-quarter of the road space, by some estimates. This, too, would free up land for more productive uses, such as green space or affordable housing.”

Here is a great example of technology informing commercial real estate’s ability to serve the greater good. As managers of a range of product types, including affordable and seniors housing, we at EBMC see literally on a daily basis the contribution commercial real estate makes to our cultural landscape. It is, if you will, the human side of brick-and-mortar.

We advocate for more attention being paid to the grossly under-served housing industry, and particularly well-maintained, quality product for individuals and families in greater need. We advocate as well for the growing movement toward green spaces to humanize our MSAs and push back on the overcrowding of inner cities.

We tend to take for granted the upside of technology--the efficiencies and the quality of life that it brings, while too easily condemning our dependence on it. We take for granted as well the essential benefit of commercial real estate. Yes, it is a for-profit industry, but one that houses our families and supports the livelihoods of those of us working in offices and warehouses.

The concept of opening land for the types of housing mentioned above or simply putting a little more green in our hectic lives is a great example of two distinct and often under-appreciated industries coming together for the good of everyone.

Steve Burger, President

As president and COO of Eugene Burger Management Co., Steve Burger is directly responsible for the overall quality, depth and consistency of management services provided in all 15 regions in the EBMC coverage map.

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