Creating Space for Emerging Professionals at CNU

The Emerging New Urbanists (ENU) made their first appearance at CNU this past March with the primary goal of creating a space for these emerging professionals to share with and learn from each other. They prioritized welcoming all new voices and encouraged the sharing of new ideas. Opticos Design’s very own Singeh Saliki, Cal Kurtz (ENU Co-Chair), and Beth Cichon (ENU Team Lead) have been participants since ENU’s founding, helping grow membership to nearly 100 active members.

How a Form-Based Code Generated over $500 Million in Downtown Infill Projects and Transformed a Sleepy Downtown

In 2014, Opticos Design worked with the City of Mesa, Arizona to create a Master Plan and Form-Based Code (FBC) that would provide incentives for redevelopment in their downtown core and along a five-mile stretch of Main Street. The Plan and Code focused development around three new transit stations to allow for a network of new walkable, public spaces. Prior to the adoption of the plan and FBC, there had been no private-sector investment in downtown Mesa in over three decades.

The ENU Place Summit: Breaking Down Barriers to Advance and Connect Emerging Professionals within CNU

The Emerging New Urbanists Task Force held their first annual ENU Place Summit in San Francisco/Berkeley (hosted by Opticos), Chicago, New Haven/NYC, and via virtual platforms concurrently in October 2021. This inaugural event celebrated the creation of the Emerging New Urbanist (ENU) Task Force – a team of rising leaders dedicated to their mission of advancing the goals of the Charter of the New Urbanism with a focus on empowering emerging professionals to shape the future of the CNU.