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Urban Land Institute Virtual Advisory Services Panel


In April 2020, Montgomery Planning selected the Urban Land Institute’s (ULI) Advisory Services Program to convene a virtual Advisory Services Panel of independent, volunteer land use and real estate experts to review and provide recommendations on Montgomery Planning’s preliminary recommendations on the update to the policy’s schools element. The SSP identifies how school facility infrastructure adequacy is defined and measured with respect to the approval of new development. The ULI panel also provided a national perspective on best practices and resources related to policies that guide growth, infrastructure funding and school capacity issues. Montgomery Planning staff will incorporate feedback from the ULI panel into the recommendations presented during a Planning Board briefing on May 28.

“I was very impressed with the expertise and perspective on the virtual ULI panel,” said Montgomery Planning Director Gwen Wright. “The update to the county’s growth policy is one of our most important initiatives, and I’m confident this update will lay the groundwork for how our county can grow and thrive into the future.”

ULI is a global, multidisciplinary real estate organization whose work is driven by more than 45,000 members dedicated to responsible land use and building thriving communities.

The virtual ULI Advisory Services panel included national experts who worked intensively for two and a half days on analyzing data and preliminary SSP recommendations, researching best practices from around the country, and conducting interviews with stakeholders, county agencies and community members. The ULI panel’s final report and recommendations will be delivered in early June.


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About the ULI Advisory Services

With the goal of improving quality of life and caliber of development everywhere, ULI’s Advisory Services convenes a multidisciplinary panel of experts who may have backgrounds in development, planning, finance, economics, architecture and public administration to review and give unbiased feedback on some of the most complex problems facing communities. Over the past 70 years, ULI has held more than 700 advisory panels that work with local leaders to provide practical solutions and objective recommendations to revive, rethink and restore communities around the globe and improve the lives of people who live in those communities.

This vASP (virtual Advisory Services panel), was ULI’s first such program executed in an entirely virtual format. It was created as a programmatic pivot to during these uncertain times and is a complement to the existing Advisory and Technical Assistance services offered by ULI. The vASP is 2.5-day panel that convenes a multi-disciplinary panel of 4 to 6 experts who reside all over the US, and who possess a range of professional backgrounds so that their collective skills meet the needs of an identified land use or policy challenge. Using a problem statement that includes four to six guiding questions, and briefing materials, the panel convenes virtually to learn from the sponsor, engages in facilitated stakeholder interviews, deliberate, and build consensus on recommendations that address the guiding challenge questions.