Seattle development technology company CityBldr has raised a $4.3 million Seed round, CEO and co-founder Bryan Copley confirmed today.
CityBldr’s proprietary back-end technology imagines what might be possible if small parcels of land were combined and turned over for larger development projects. The application ranks potential uses of different properties, allows developers to compare the projected ROI for each use and lists probable buyers based on historical buying patterns.
“Our mission statement is to create happy, functional, sustainable communities,” Copley said. “The way we do that is to connect these disparate constituents” — residents, developers and cities themselves — “and align their incentives.”
“There’s a massive shortage of housing in the United States,” Copley went on. “A lot of that has to do with the fact that the best land — the land most suitable to house the maximum amount of people — is locked up.”
As an example, Copley said CityBldr’s algorithm recently identified eight properties located across the road from the site of a future light rail stop and determined that, due to recent zoning changes, the parcels could be combined and the homes replaced with 270 apartments.
“Zillow said those properties were worth $3.6 million combined,” Copley said. “Our algorithm suggested they were worth $7.5 million combined.”
While he wouldn’t disclose which investors participated in this round — which brings the company’s funding total to $5.5 million — Copley said the company will use the money to expand its marketing, sales and engineering teams and continue to grow its Los Angeles office. Copley also plans to open a third office “whenever Amazon announces HQ2.”
“We’re banking on there being a lot of changes in whatever city they end up building in,” Copley said. “I think there are very few exogenous stimuli you can compare to a five billion dollar investment from Amazon in your city.”