We are community builders
There is an immediate need to change how we build. We help our clients achieve transformative sustainable developments by navigating complexities, streamlining opportunities, and striving for cost-beneficial solutions. We understand and can apply the business case needed for this change because we have been developers and we have worked with governments across the country.
“Urban Equation used rigorous financial and technical analysis to help us refine our guiding principles and align a complex group of investors and consultants around our financial and sustainability goals.”
Donald F. Smith Jr. - President - RIDC
Regional Industrial Development Corporation (RIDC)
Almono, Pittsburgh, PA
B.E.S., B.Arch., LEED AP BD+C
Jenny works with developers across North America to create business cases for their sustainable development goals, including carbon neutrality, community energy, and the One Planet Living designation. Her most recent clients include Sidewalk Labs, Oxford Properties, and all levels of Canadian government.
Before joining Urban Equation, Jenny spent 10 years at Halsall Associates (now WSP) helping developers, municipalities and building owners create award- winning, high-performance green building and community design projects.
“I’m motivated by clients who are constantly striving to improve their environmental, social and financial impact,” she says.
A LEED accredited professional, Jenny holds degrees in architecture and environmental studies. She is a former member of the City of Toronto’s Design Review Panel.
As the founder of the Windmill Development Group (Urban Equation’s founding parent company), Jonathan represents Windmill on Urban Equation’s Board of Directors.
“Urban Equation was created as a vehicle to share Windmill’s leadership in viable low impact development with the broader real estate community,” he says.
Jonathan has a developer’s mindset. His deep experience in real estate development, financing, leasing, and venture capital services provides clients with a strategic perspective on the complex realties of sustainable real estate.
BSc., MRICS, PQS
Justin works with large institutions, developers, and private groups to minimize risk and maximize returns, while delivering the project’s overall vision.
He has advised clients on over $4B of real estate deals across North America, and he has led complex development projects in Canada, the United States, UK, Central Europe and the Caribbean.
“I focus on solving the problems that keep my clients up at night…if they can’t sleep, neither can I,” he says.
Justin holds a Bachelor of Science in Commercial Management from the UK’s Loughborough University.
He is a member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) and Canadian Institution of Quantity Surveyors (CIQS) and was appointed to the RICS Canada Board in 2012.
BSC., Dip Env Tech, LEED AP BD+C
Steve has developed several One Planet sustainability strategies, including for Ottawa’s ground-breaking Zibi project, a $1B, mixed-use, net-zero community development. He also worked on the Ottawa Senators’ winning proposal to develop LeBreton Flats, another mixed-use brownfield redevelopment.
“I’m privileged to work with great clients who are keen to push the sustainability envelope,” Steve says.
Steve has a Bachelor of Science from London’s Kingston University and a Diploma in Environmental Technology from Belleville’s Loyalist College.
Before joining Urban Equation, he provided environmental consulting services in the UK. He was also Director of Education for the Canada Green Building Council.
Urban Equation, along with our partners EQ Building Performance and Energy Profiles Limited, were specifically retained by Sidewalk Labs, a division of Google’s parent company Alphabet, to extract real anonymized data from various building databases to analyze how a community can be actively and measurably climate positive.
You can read the full study here.
Ottawa’s Algonquin College is a pioneer in the design and construction of high performance buildings. Since 2007, Urban Equation has been a key member of the College’s Campus Development Consortium, originally conceived to support the design and construction of four major capital expansion projects. We were initially engaged as sustainability consultants, working with the College to establish a sustainability decision-making framework based on a vision, guiding principles and specific project objectives. Once the projects were set up for success, our role shifted to compliance. Over the years, we have become trusted advisors to the College on a range of real estate and strategic initiatives, including the College’s 5-Year Campus Development Plan and sustainability strategies relating to energy, water and transportation.
Zibi is a pedestrian-oriented, mixed-use development situated on two islands in Ottawa and riverfront property in Gatineau, Quebec. Through residential, commercial and communal developments, this neglected brownfield industrial site, once the heart of Ottawa’s bustling industrial sector, is being reclaimed, transformed and reanimated into a vibrant new community. Urban Equation facilitated stakeholder engagement, including with First Nations groups and various governments, to gain alignment on sustainability and development principles.
In partnership with PwC, Urban Equation prepared recommendations for the Ministry’s ‘Green Bank’ program which included evaluating and designing incentive, financing and assistance programs that directly support greenhouse gas emissions reductions in the residential, commercial and industrial sectors. Our work included stakeholder engagement, industry outreach and research, carbon abatement analysis and financial modeling.
We are leaders of transformative change. We know how to bring innovation to market. We demystify sustainability and offer streamlined solutions that keep pace with the rapid evolution of sustainable development.
We strive to create replicable models – of plans, communities, buildings and investments – that support the social, economic, environmental, cultural and educational health of the regions where we live, learn and work.
Through our commitment to outstanding performance, we consistently deliver on the Triple Bottom Line – People, Planet and Prosperity.
PeopleWe believe in vibrant, healthy communities. Equitable communities. Complete communities where people can live, work, play and thrive.
PlanetWe believe in protecting the planet for future generations. We advocate for a low carbon society where we live within the means of our planet.
ProsperityThe narrative around the economics of sustainability needs to change. We are leading that discussion by looking at the real cost of city building and total community benefit.
PerformanceWe believe the best way to serve our clients is through disciplined performance. We bring rigour, energy and consistency to everything we do. Our people and processes are there not just to guide and manage your projects but to inspire you to greater creativity and innovation.
Urban Equation combines decades of practical experience, diverse backgrounds and passion in real estate development, sustainability and community planning to help our clients drive value for their projects, investments or initiatives.
- Success Planning
- Masterplan Support
- Due Diligence/Feasibility Analysis
- Benchmarking/Cost Studies
- Market Sounding
- Project Recovery Services
- Development Advice and Management
- Community Energy + Microgrid Feasibility
- Regulatory + Utility Insight
- Alternative Fuel Readiness Analysis
- Innovative financing solutions
- Sustainability Plans
- Healthy + Productive Buildings
- Net Zero Energy + Zero Carbon Strategy
- Life Cycle Analysis + Triple Bottom Line Reporting
- Carbon Reduction Plans
- Certification systems at building and community scale (such as One Planet Living. Ecodistricts, LEED, WELL, TGS , BOMA)
- Sustainability, CSR and GHG Reports
- Alternative Financing Strategy
- Real Estate Development Standards
- Building + Community Sustainability Programs
- Community Energy Planning
- Low Carbon Economy Planning
- Green Loan Programs
- Green Lease Programs
- Sustainable Campus Plans
- Existing Building Renewal
- Green Leasing Strategy
- Existing Building Optimization
- Renewable Opportunity Analysis
- LEED EB + BOMA + WELL
- Partnership Opportunities
- Healthy Workplaces
- Adding Social Value and Vibrancy to Spaces
- Resiliency Planning
“What is clear to me is the collective passion and commitment that the Urban Equation team has for [the Baker District] development. That passion was clearly (and authentically) demonstrated to the community in the first public engagement event. The level of professionalism and organization on display created a deep trust in Urban Equation’s ability to manage public engagement events. It is a privilege to work with (and learn from) such a talented group; a group that will help to make the vision for Baker District a reality.”
Martin Jewitt, Program Manager, Portfolio Development, Business Development and Enterprise
City of Guelph
Deeply rooted in transforming traditional development to deliver environmental sustainability.
Urban Equation knows how to bring innovation in sustainable development to market.
We were founded 15 years ago by Windmill Development to execute a big vision. Windmill transforms conventional development practices with a built-in approach that creates opportunity for profit, people and the planet. Urban Equation is a vehicle to share this knowledge and experience.
Urban Equation provides a needed body of expertise to the industry. Our first project, Dockside Green in British Columbia, set an international benchmark and proved that community building did not have to come at the expense of the environment or economics.
Sustainable development is an evolving sector – we are leading this transition. We develop sustainability frameworks that allow developers to work more efficiently with city planners for approvals. We stay on top of changes to building codes, standards and certifications so you don’t have to. We support governments to achieve the long-term change they envision for their communities. And we operate in the spirit of openness and collaboration to achieve exponential impact.
Urban Equation’s unique understanding of the complexities of development and complexities of designing sustainable communities provides clients with a level of knowledge unparalleled in the marketplace. There is simply no other consultant like us.