Author: Louis Burns, PhD

Dr. Burns is the president of Urban Prosperity. He completed graduate work in real estate, GIS, urban design, and gaming at the University of Texas at Dallas. He was formerly both a commercial and residential Realtor, a freelance marketer, a tiny house builder, a math teacher, and an Airborne Army Medic.

More Building Models and Maps

I’ve gone through a couple more iterations of building types and now the maps. I’ve also started working on the next version of the mechanics and rules. One of the central challenges of the game is to integrate community well-being with economic development. That’s essentially internalizing an externality. In other words, recognizing a systemic value […]

Prototyping Game Building Types with 3D Printing

For the game I’m developing, I’m prototyping a selection of the different building types available from the Missing Middle housing types. There is also Missing Middle retail building types: I’m trying to capture the essence of these dynamics in the game. I’m partial toward fourplexes for a number of reasons I wrote about earlier. Accessory […]

Fourplexes and Flexibility

Fourplexes have many advantages for communities and their residents. Some of the advantages, when compared generally to single-family on the same parcel size, are: Higher property values and tax income Promote the density needed for retail investment and therefore walkability Great first-time investor owner-occupied opportunities (aka house hacking) Consolidated maintenance Can be financed through single-family […]

Gerrymandering in Richardson

In my previous article, I discussed gerrymandering in general and how to resolve it. In this article, we’ll take a look at how gerrymandering sometimes works in cities. We’ll take Richardson, Texas as an example because that’s where our organization is located. At some point in the past, Richardson switched from the worst possible voting […]

How to Improve Walkability

Walkability usually refers to how urban and how likely people are to walk in an area. There are many definitions and metrics for walkability. Urban scientists often measure block size or distance between intersections. One of the more highly rated mainstream sources on walkability is Jeff Speck with his book Walkable City and more recently, […]