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Leadership Luncheon – Driverless Cars and Their Impact on Real Estate

May 18
11:00 am - 2:00 pm
Junior League of Houston
1811 Briar Oaks Ln.
Houston, TX 77027 United States
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Driverless Cars and Their Impact on Real Estate

What do driverless cars and other cutting-edge technologies mean for parking, infrastructure and place-making in the real estate industry? Join our expert panel as they share their thoughts on how Houston and the development community can prepare for and adapt to the coming changes. Will we even recognize Houston in 20 years?


Peter Merwin

Peter Merwin leads Gensler’s Mixed Use Practice, bringing more than three decades of expertise in the design of large retail and retail-centric, mixed-use developments, as well as more than 40 clubs and restaurants across the U.S. A respected architect, panelist, speaker, writer, lecturer and design juror, Peter is a subject-matter expert on retail-centric, mixed-use environments and walkable urbanism. From his experience as a senior designer for the world’s largest retail REIT, Peter understands the retail leasing dynamics needed for successful mixed-use developments. He holds a Bachelor of Architecture and a Bachelor of Arts in Fine Arts and Architecture from Rice University.


Tory Gattis
Center for Opportunity Urbanism

Tory Gattis is a Founding Senior Fellow with the Center, and co-authored the original Opportunity Urbanism studies and City Journal article with noted urbanist and Center Director Joel Kotkin about creating a city philosophy focused on upward social mobility for all citizens as an alternative to the popular smart growth, new urbanism, and creative class movements.  Tory writes the popular Houston Strategies blog and its twin blog at the Houston Chronicle, Opportunity Urbanist, where he discusses strategies for making Houston a better city (and has published numerous Houston Chronicle op-eds on these topics as well).  He is the founder of Coached Schooling, a startup backed by the Rice University Owlspark accelerator program and the Laura and John Arnold Foundation to create a high-tech network of affordable private schools ($10/day) combining the best elements of eLearning, home and traditional schooling to reinvent the one-room schoolhouse for the 21st century.  Tory is a McKinsey consulting alum, TEDx speaker, and holds both an MBA and BSEE from Rice University.

Drew Austin

Drew has worked at Uber for four years, most recently managing operations for Uber’s delivery and logistics products in New York City. Before Uber, he worked at the Port Authority of New York & New Jersey, the Chicago Transit Authority, and Northwest Airlines. He is a 2006 graduate of Northwestern University, where he studied history and transportation, and holds a master’s degree in urban planning from MIT. Drew also writes about cities, culture, and technology on his blog, Kneeling Bus.

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