Maybe I’m a Stoic

Maybe I’m a Stoic

I am wondering: What if we approached our jobs and what we do every day a bit more like the Stoics?  To summarize Wikipedia, these ancients thought that happiness comes from accepting our lot in life and consequently, enjoying what we do. (Well, at least most days.) To me, this means not allowing too much push [Read More]

Things Aren’t Always What They Seem

Things Aren’t Always What They Seem

This last week, I made my annual pilgrimage to the ICSC Recon convention in Las Vegas in support of our retail group. At any convention, I have always found one gets as much out of riding in a taxi or a visit to coffee shop as one gets on the convention floor. This year was [Read More]

The Case for a Liberal Arts Degree

The Case for a Liberal Arts Degree

Last weekend, I got to be a part of The University of the South’s “Beyond the Gates,” program, something I have done for many years. It’s a weekend to help mostly Seniors prepare for their lives after graduation, only  3 short months away. As I got to visit with the some 90 or so students [Read More]

A Diet For Roads?

A Diet For Roads?

I’m a co-chair of our ULI chapter for the state. In a recent meeting, James Fowler, who leads planning, design and construction for UAB, started talking about “Road Diets.” While I had never heard the term, it made a lot of sense after I heard him explain. The initiative is to make urban campuses more [Read More]

A Simple Tape

A Simple Tape

As teenager, I helped my father build a cabin in North Georgia. I still remember how he loved his Craftsman 6-foot yellow folding rule. I wish I still had one, but unfortunately, I somehow misused them when I was younger and ended up breaking a few. Still, I have great respect for what that simple tool [Read More]

Concrete Flatness:  A Nickel Ain’t Worth a Dime Anymore

Concrete Flatness: A Nickel Ain’t Worth a Dime Anymore

Strange as it sounds now, back in the 1970s, getting a concrete floor into a “flat mode” was at times measured as “no more than an 1/8 inch difference in 10 feet,” or for the old timers, “throw a nickel on a wet floor, and if the water doesn’t bead over the top, it’s okay.” [Read More]

The Right Way to Co-Op

The Right Way to Co-Op

Over the last few years, we’ve had a number of interns from the Auburn University Urban Studio, and have had success channeling their talent while they hopefully learn a few things along the way. This past year, we decided to up our commitment, and are now involved with the Auburn University CADC Co-Op Program. It’s our [Read More]

Leaving Las Vegas–RECON 2016

Leaving Las Vegas–RECON 2016

I spent this week at ICSC‘s RECON, the gold standard annual convention for the bricks and mortar component of the retail industry. This year marked the event’s 3oth anniversary in Las Vegas. Retail feels like an old friend to me. For a decade or two when we first started building, retail construction was our mainstay. During [Read More]

From Our Server to the Clouds on Both Coasts

From Our Server to the Clouds on Both Coasts

Over the last week or so, we migrated from an onsite server closet to the Microsoft Office 365 cloud, for our email, Excel, Word and the rest of the Office suite. I will not say that the transition has been without headaches or easy, but I was told the change was for good reason. A [Read More]

Trending Now for Open Air Retail

Trending Now for Open Air Retail

Last week I was able to attend ICSC’s Open Air Center (OAC) Summit in Scottsdale. This is my fourth time to attend the annual event, which is closed to 400 attendees running the gamut from landlords to brokers and folks like me. It’s always good discussion of key trends, challenges and the opportunities current to [Read More]