(From left to right) RED Club Members Kristen Hunter, Ian Klein, and Elli Lobach
April 21, 2010: The MIT Center for Real Estate Alumni Association (“AACRE”) is excited to announce the results of this year’s inaugural 2010 MIT Boston Open: Harvard Graduate School of Design took home first place honors, NYU Schack took home second and the UC Berkeley Haas School of Business placed third. All three teams presented in front of a live audience and were judged by some of the industry’s contemporary leading practitioners including: Phil Bakalchuk (Water Street Investments), Jeff Cushman (Cushman & Wakefield), Kathleen MacNeil (Millennium Partners) and Eric Nelson (The Bulfinch Companies).
Each team’s submission was thorough, detailed and creative g especially given the difficult aspects of the proposed property and the team’s understanding of the tight credit markets the development industry faces today. All teams engaged traditional highest and best use analysis combined with sophisticated private / public financing schemes that thoroughly impressed judges and the audience. Ultimately it was Harvard’s innovative and creative submission that addressed Boston’s need for student housing and a dynamic financing strategy that vaulted them into first place.
“The small scale and historic landmark status of the site posed a host of interrelated physical and economic challenges to its redevelopment. Formulating an acquisition strategy required identifying viable programming options that could function within a tight building footprint and compete against forthcoming supply. The proposed uses also had to offer reasonable near-term financing prospects and sufficient risk-adjusted returns,” said Harvard teammates Kristen Hunter, Ian Klein and Elli Lobach.
MIT hosted more than fifty attendees the evening of the 16th at the Prudential Center. Attendees included students, academics and practitioners. This year’s event was sponsored by gold sponsors Credit Tenant Capital and Cushman & Wakefield, silver sponsors The Bulfinch Companies and Cabot Cabot Forbes and Boston Properties provided the venue. “Without these industry-leading firms that obviously see the benefits of investing in the industry’s future, this year’s MIT Boston Open would not have been successful. We are very grateful for them,” said Mike Tilford (SM ‘09 and AACRE Co-President).
Commenting on the success of the event, Mike Lam (SM ‘09), this year’s Co-Chair said, “The event was an overall success. We accomplished what the Alumni wanted to do: 1) put together a world-class event to host graduate schools during the ULI Spring Council and 2) provide a venue for peer schools to showcase the industry’s future talent. We had interest from over ten schools, proving there is interest for an open format real estate graduate competition. We look forward to making this a long-standing tradition moving forward.”