Urban Apostles from Australia: Jason Twill

Jason Twill has a career spanning over 20 years in urban development. Jason has been at the forefront of built environment transformation. His career experience includes delivery of sustainable mixed-income housing projects throughout New York City, delivery of Vulcan Inc.’s South Lake Union Innovation District in Seattle, Washington, and serving as Head of Sustainability and Innovation for Lendlease in Australia.

In 2016, Jason was appointed as an Innovation Fellow and Senior Lecturer within the Faculty of Design, Architecture and Building at the University of Technology Sydney and leads research into regenerative urbanism, housing affordability, and property economics.

Jason was designated a LEED Fellow by the United States Green Building Council in 2014, and he was named a Next City Global Urban Vanguard in both 2015 and 2017. Jason is also an appointed Champion and adviser to Nightingale Housing in Australia.

Love for NYC

Jason was born just outside of Philadelphia and grew up on the east coast.  He then moved to Columbia, Maryland, before he moved again to a suburb outside of New York City, during high school.  Where Jason grew up shaped his passion for the built environment and his desire to transform it.

My father worked in New York, and I think I grew up hating the suburbs and the monoculture status to it of car dominant environments.  I think experiencing New York City as a young adolescent and teenager really introduced me to tolerance, diversity, language, ethnicity and all these different things and I just fell in love with the city.” – Jason Twill

September 11, 2001

Jason fell in love with architecture and construction.  He was working in New York for an architecture firm and was planning to go to school at Columbia.  In 2001, Jason was working for Mass and Duffy in the World Trade Center during the attacks and barely escaped.  He postponed going to graduate school due to the aftermath of 9-11.

Shifting from Architecture to Real Estate

Jason began to gravitate towards real estate development.  He wanted to be a change agent around sustainability, social responsibility, and development in cities.  Jason was pushing people to get affordable housing.

I remember a lot of us getting made fun of. There was a cluster of us that we’re incubating the urban green, the green building chapter of New York City, and just kind of fighting to have a voice to educate the building industry, the architects, and the engineers.– Jason Twill

Urban Apostles Founder

Jason is founder and Director of Urban Apostles, a start-up real estate development and consulting services business specializing in regenerative development and deliberative housing models for cities. Urban Apostles’ work focuses on the intersection of the sharing economy and the art of city making.

He is a co-founder of both the International Living Future Institute and Green Sports Alliance as well as an originator of the Economics of Change project. In 2017, Jason founded and launched the City Makers’ Guild, an education, advocacy and research group promoting more equitable and inclusive cities.

Book Recommendations


The Geography of Nowhere:  The Rise and Decline of America’s Man-Made Landscape by James Howard Kunstler

Dark Emu:  Aboriginal Australia and the Birth of Agriculture by Bruce Pascoe

Guns, Germs and Steel by Jared Diamond

1491:  New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus by Charles Mann

The Well Tempered City by Jonathan Rose

Garrison Institute

Tune into this podcast to listen to the rest of Jason Twill’s amazing journey in this podcast hosted by Charlie.

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Announcement:  Starting on January 1, 2019, GBMS will begin rolling out it’s new membership community.  Members will be given access to some of the guests on the podcasts that you can ask project questions to, if you are preparing for an exam there will be more insurances that you will pass your next exam, you will be given cliff notes if you are a member and so much more.

If you truly enjoyed the show, don’t forget to leave a positive rating and review on iTunes.  We have prepared more episodes for the upcoming weeks, so come by again next week! Thank you for tuning in to the Green Building Matters Podcast!

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