Tandon in the News

Urban Land Institute’s top "40 under 40”


Nearly 15 years ago, Mariela Alfonzo began her career as an academic, gathering evidence to show how the built environment influences physical, social, and community health. At the time, however, she found that the terms walkability and quality of life fell mostly on deaf ears within real estate circles. Determined to learn a more pertinent language, she joined ULI and adopted the lingo of ROI, cap rates, and mezzanine finance. She says she pursued her mission of saving people from the lackluster quality of life she experienced growing up in the Miami suburbs by serving as a bridge between academia and practice and demonstrating the value of urban design, tying dollar signs to walkability, measuring how the intangible qualities of place translate into capital—both fiscal and social.

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