The Mission

UrbanPlan’s mission is to create a sophisticated level of discourse among local stakeholders involved in land use decisions through the education of tomorrow’s voters, neighbors, community leaders, public officials, and land use professionals so—together—we can create better communities.

What Is UrbanPlan?

UrbanPlan is a realistic, engaging exercise in which participants—high school students, university students, or public officials—learn about the fundamental forces that affect real estate development in our communities. Participants experience the challenging issues, private and public sector roles, complex trade-offs, and fundamental economics in play when proposing realistic land use solutions to vexing growth challenges.

ULI offers UrbanPlan in three formats for three unique audiences:


High Schools


Public Officials

berkeley-high-uli-outreach-program-025 urbanland_40471464973_cropped urbanland_38694360265_cropped
Create engaged citizens. Develop professional skills. Leverage public/private partnerships.

UrbanPlan By The Numbers

UrbanPlan has reached over 53,000 high school and university students in the United States & Canada since 2003:

  • 28 ULI District Councils and 4 satellites ran UrbanPlan programs this 2018-19 academic year.
  • UrbanPlan reached over 3,150 students in 137 classrooms at 51 high schools in the 2018-19 academic year.
  • 18 universities ran UrbanPlan in graduate MBA, Real Estate, City & Regional Planning, and Architecture programs in the 2018-19 academic year
  • More members (2,500+ per year)–including trustees, governors, and product council members–participated in UrbanPlan; more than in any other national or local ULI program.
  • Now in its fourth year, 107 ULI members engaged 320 public sector decision makers representing 175 jurisdictions through UrbanPlan.
  • 1,609 volunteers donated over 6,715 hours to the program in the 2018-19 academic year.

In Europe:

  • In the 2018-19 academic year, secondary schools and several universities will run UrbanPlan in the UK, Ireland, Germany, the Netherlands, and Poland.
  • UrbanPlan United Kingdom will reach 850 students in 25 schools from Edinburgh, Glasgow, Liverpool, Chester, Birmingham, Sheffield, and London.
  • ULI piloted UrbanPlan in Ireland last year and will bring the program to 10 schools and 300 students in Dublin, Galway, and Limerick.
  • By the end of 2017, UrbanPlan Germany will have reached 300 students, supported by 25 volunteers from the land use industry.
  • Learn more about ULI Europe’s adaptation of UrbanPlan here>>

What ULI Members Say About UrbanPlan

RON NAHAS, Principal, Rafanelli & Nahas

nahas_6600_bw_2“Our goal is to create a more sophisticated level of discourse among local stakeholders involved in land use decisions. The education of tomorrow’s voters, neighbors, community leaders, public officials, and land use professionals is mission critical for ULI.”



KIM DIAMOND, Managing Director, Trumark Urban

kdiamond-headshot“UrbanPlan volunteer training goes deeper than any traditional real estate development class. The takeaway value transcends effective volunteering. The intellectual discipline and Socratic method of questioning are assets in my work life.”



BRYAN THORNTON, Partner, Pacific Coast Capital

bryanthornton_6343_2_2“Like Advisory Services panels, UrbanPlan does what ULI does best: help external audiences understand how market and nonmarket forces in their community affect what can be approved, financed, built, and sustainably tenanted. That’s essential for any meaningful discussion about land use.”



Interested in serving as a volunteer?

Get Involved

Want to support UrbanPlan in other ways?

Give Back via ULI Annual Fund

Get Involved


Get Involved

Schools, teachers, and students – contact us at urbanplan@uli.org.

Are you a ULI member and have interest in serving as a volunteer?

Get Involved

Local Impact: ULI Arizona


Developing Minds: UrbanPlan