Development Case Studies

Since 1971, the Urban Land Institute has been publishing case studies describing the development process of projects that are both innovative in their markets and financially successful. Originally titled Project Reference Files, the case studies were published in print form until 1997, when they were digitized and made available in an electronic database, known as ULI Development Case Studies.

Today, the database includes nearly 500 case studies of innovative projects from around the world. Representing a wide variety of project types, six new ULI Development Case (English version)Studies are added each quarter, totaling 24 case studies per year. The projects range from single- and multifamily housing, mixed use, town centers, retail centers, office buildings, industrial properties, civic facilities, new creative types of development, and more. In addition, the database includes reports on ULI Award for Excellence winners, projects featured in the Institute’s publications, and projects selected by ULI staff for being innovative and financially successful.

What’s Included

A short version of each case study containing a brief summary can be viewed free on the Development Case Study Web Site.
Subscribers have access to a “full” case study, which includes the features below:

  • General Description: Outlines the project’s objectives and the development strategies used to achieve them.
  • Development Team: Contact information for the principal developer and architect.
  • Site and History: Describes the site’s characteristics, location, strategic position, and pertinent background.
  • Special Features: Each report focuses on distinctive features that set the project apart from the ordinary—market niches, design approaches, innovative concepts, techniques used to gain approval, and financing methods.
  • Experience Gained: Provides insight into what worked and what didn’t.
  • Project Data: Provides key facts and figures such as costs, sales and rents, land area and size, and the development schedule.
  • Illustrations: Several photos and either site or floor plans are available for each project.

For more information or to view a list of all projects included, visit the Development Case Studies Web Site.