The Real Estate Developer Index (REDI) is a values-based approach to evaluate commercial and residential real estate developers.

Transparency & Accountability

Personal Background Check and Base Underwriting

The investigation will consist of a review of the developer’s financial statements, a criminal background check, a review of court records related to development activity, and a review of the buildings built by the developer

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Code Violations and actions taken to resolve issues when they occur (frequency & response time)

Code violations occur because the development and operation of a building requires the coordination and cooperation of several people, many of whom are outside of the developer’s control and sphere of influence.  While the term “code violation” may sound bad, the fact is that buildings often have code violations—sometimes minor and sometimes more major.  The question is what does a developer do when notified of a code violation(s). The goal for this metric is to measure the developer’s response time to a violation to make her or his project safe for the residents and community she or he serves.

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Tax Payment History

Paying property taxes and special assessments are part of giving back towards the public good to improve individual communities and the city as a whole.  In short it is a Civic Duty.

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Sustainability & Design

Environmental Design

Whether the measuring stick is LEED, Green Globes, IgCC, the national green building standard, or some yet-to-be- announced program, sustainable development is good development.  REDI will measure a project’s environmental sustainability, focusing on resource consumption and site selection.  A project’s design has implications for its impact on the community, from utility bills paid by residents to its consumption of natural resources, and so it is critical that new projects meet high environmental and design standards.

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Proximity to Transit

Site selection and project location are the ultimate sustainable practice.  A building that is located in a green field that happens to have gray water and energy efficient construction isn’t really green.  However, projects that are located in cities, where existing infrastructure can be used, are inherently more green.

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Green (Public Open) Space

Great developments create communities where everyone—not just the tenants of the building—feel as though they belong.  A beautiful building that creates barriers to the residents who have lived in the neighborhood for decades does not add to the lifeblood of a city, rather it displaces the authenticity of the urban core.  Green space also results in health and vitality benefits to residents due to having a place to exercise and relax and connect with nature.

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Community Engagement & Empowerment

Contribution to Community

Developers should be encouraged to contribute to the neighborhoods and communities in which they work—beyond the bricks and mortar development.  This section of REDI measures how much a developer contributes to the community and neighborhood. Projects are evaluated to determine the developer’s track record and how they contribute above and beyond minimum regulations.

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Local Business Participation and Retention

Too often, developers and their contractors use employees from out of state to build their projects.  To truly benefit a neighborhood, developers should invest in the community by hiring and training local residents, contractors, and leasing to local tenants.  In addition, where possible developers should support and invest in local residents who have the capacity to start a small business that will support their development and the community.

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Affordability & Community Needs

REDI will evaluate developers providing the following:

  • Affordable housing above requirements if any
  • Funding for community organizations/ programs
  • Regular community meeting to seek community’s opinion or to get advice from community leaders
  • Providing community facilities
  • Construction of parks and recreational facilities
  • Mentorship opportunities for youth in the community
  • Construction jobs for local residents during construction of projects
  • Management and staff level employment opportunities for local residents at the projects.
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