San Antonio in recent years has begun to shed its reputation as a sleepy town by way of development projects in and around the urban core.

The Urban Land Institute San Antonio (ULI-SA) chapter will explore this transformation and the city’s development trajectory at the ULI Texas Forum this month. Taking place Thursday, June 15 through Friday June, 16 at the newly-restored St. Anthony Hotel, the event will convene local developers and leaders in real estate and from the City of San Antonio, as well as other sector stakeholders to participate in project tours, interactive panels, and networking.

Assistant City Manager Lori Houston, who oversees the Center City Development Office, and Hemisfair Park Redevelopment Corporation CEO Andrés Andujar will kick off the conference by discussing placemaking and public-private partnerships in downtown. Such partnerships have resulted in major urban core developments such as the ongoing Hemisfair redevelopment and the new Frost Bank tower project, which broke ground earlier this year.

Notable speakers throughout the event include local developer Steve YndoBrooks President/CEO Leo Gomez, Hemisfair Director of Operations, Planning, and Development Omar Gonzalez, Alamo Endowment Executive Director Becky Dinnin, and Rosella Coffee Owner Charles Gonzalez, among 14 others.

Touring projects around the city is a key component of the forum. Attendees will have the opportunity to see developments such as the suburban master planned project La Cantera on the Northwest side – which has a newly redeveloped resort and spa, retail, office buildings, and new multi-family apartments – and Air Force base redevelopments such as Brooks and Port SA. The former military bases are now work, live, and play communities, and Brooks has a mixed-use development with a solar energy plant, multi-family living, office spaces, and a new medical school. Port SA is a multi-industry hub, supporting public and private companies in aerospace, cybersecurity, defense operations, and manufacturing.

Tours also will take participants to the Tobin Center for the Performing Arts, the recently redeveloped Witte Museum, and several multi-family and mixed-use developments in the center city. Additionally, they’ll take a look at the master plans being developed for the Alamo and Hemisfair redevelopment projects.

Perhaps one of the most successful redevelopment projects in the city is the Pearl, which has continued to boom thanks in part to the 1.3-mile Museum Reach extension of the San Antonio River that has sparked new developments.

The Pearl Farmer's Market happens every Saturday and Sunday. Here, it is viewed from the balcony of Cellars.
The Pearl Farmer’s Market takes place every Saturday and Sunday. Credit: Bonnie Arbittier / San Antonio Report

Groups will tour the following areas of the Pearl: Hotel Emma and Larder, the newly-opened luxury apartment complex Cellars and Hiatus Spa, speakeasy-style music club Jazz,TX and the Pearl Food Hall, the Can Plant apartments, and the Culinary Institute of America among various other restaurants and retail establishments on site.

The forum will conclude with a panel – “Cultivating Development: Trends at the Intersection of Food and Real Estate” – at the Pearl Stable. Silver Ventures Managing Director of Real Estate Bill Shown will discuss the redevelopment of the Pearl with design and culinary panelists including Pearl Director of Culinary Operation Shelley Grieshaber, Cured Executive Chef Steve McHugh, and Dado Group architect Kristin Hefty.

Event registration, which includes meals, access to programming, and transportation to project tours, can be completed here. The deadline is Wednesday, June 14.

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Camille Garcia

Camille Garcia is a journalist born and raised in San Antonio. She formerly worked at the San Antonio Report as assistant editor and reporter. Her email is