URBANEER™ was recently featured in the Grand Rapids Business Journal sharing information about Spaces That Learn. Check out the article below:

The spaces we use everyday shape how we live, work, learn, shop, stay healthy and socialize. Many of them however aren’t keeping up with our rapidly changing world. They were designed for a different era and are often too expensive, inflexible and digitally challenged. We need our spaces today to work harder and be smarter.

History is a good teacher when trying to make sense of changes in our built environment. One hundred years ago our spaces changed radically with the introduction of electricity, communication networks, and the automobile. Real estate of almost every type was transformed over a 15 to 20-year period. We saw the rise of centralized schools, modern hospitals, office buildings and suburban housing. New industries like national home building and office furniture emerged to meet the new market needs. Sears and other retailers shifted their business models from mail order to suburban retail stores. This era set in motion a pattern of real estate development that proliferated for the next 80 years. Freeways, subsidized mortgages and racial tension accelerated the pattern mid-century but it was essentially cast in place through the innovation of the early 20th century.

We are currently approaching another major transformation of our built environment that will be driven by a new wave of innovation. Digital interfaces, sensors, smart materials, self-driving vehicles, artificial intelligence, and robotics will begin to change the spaces we use every day. This new era will help us tackle social challenges such as the urban housing crisis, an aging population, rising healthcare costs and changing education models.

Click here to visit the Grand Rapids Business Journal website to read more.

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