Our Story

Steven Pontes, Avi Ben-Zaken, and Eric Cress founded Urban Development + Partners in 2006, leveraging their combined experience in real estate acquisition, construction, and management along with their shared interest in adaptive reuse projects. The partners also shared a vision for a sustainable business model—one in which the interests of management would be aligned with the interests of investors, tenants, the local community, and the environment. 

With those values in mind, over the past decade, UD+P has developed and acquired 28 properties—raising the bar for green building practices, ethical investing, customer service, and community outreach along the way. UD+P currently controls and manages over 390,000 sq ft of real estate across 16 properties. As a vertically integrated company, we shepherd each project through the full lifecycle: finance, design, construction, and management. Our expertise extends to a range of property types including adaptive reuse, mixed use, residential, and office.

Steven Pontes passed away in early 2008. He was a visionary businessman, a dear friend, and a constant inspiration. Steven had a passion for real estate, and creating UD+P was the realization of a dream for him. We are dedicated to making UD+P a company that would make him proud.

Our Approach

For UD+P,  a great real estate opportunity is one that benefits communities, tenants, neighbors, local businesses and the environment. We live in southeast Portland and have a sincere interest in the character and vitality of the local community. We are committed to operating our business with the following values in mind:

  • Preservation of valuable artifacts and redevelopment of underutilized urban property.
  • Adaptive re-use and other sustainable building practices, transit-oriented locations, and land-use economy.
  • Ethical,  transparent business practices and unparalleled customer service.
  • Management standards that serve everyone’s needs with economic agreements that will always be honored.
  • A local company that will last,  with a long-term vision of 20 to 30 years and a commitment to making a positive,  lasting impact on the future for all stakeholders.

Our Team

+ Meet the Team


UD+P in the News

March 2017 - Transit Tech Company Moves To Renovated Space In Old Town Chinatown
- Bisnow

February 2017 - Represented: Oregon's Housing Affordability Crisis - Oregon Public Broadcasting's Think Out Loud

February 2017 - Portland Landlord Could Pay More Than $100K to Relocate Tenants - Oregon Public Broadcasting

January 2017 - Cool Spaces: Inside Moovel's Historic New Digs (Photos) - Portland Business Journal

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January 2017 - Moovel's New Portland Office Restores 125-year-old Fixture in Old Town Chinatown - OregonLive / The Oregonian

October 2016 – Central Eastside's Newest Coworking Space Opens Its Brand New Doors - Portland Business Journal

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May 2016 - No Vacancy - Studies Show Industrial Vacancy Rates at an All-time Low; Demand at Record High - Portland Tribune

October 2015 – CEO Roundtable: Affordability a casualty in Portland development boom – Portland Business Journal

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September 2015 – Will the MAX Orange Line be a real estate boon? We asked Division Street's top developer – Portland Business Journal

September 2015 – Metro money provides 'tipping point' for Northeast mixed-use project – DJC Oregon

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April 2015 – Eric Cress: The Man with a Vision for Division Portland Business Journal

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January 2015 – Construction set for Burnside Bridgehead's latest building – Portland Business Journal

December 2014 – Bike riders and bikeways loom large in Burnside Bridgehead development boom – Bike Portland

October 2014 – In-Demand Cities – Architectural Record 

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October 2014 – The List: Top commercial developers – Portland Business Journal

As the group expands its portfolio of community-oriented development projects, UD+P ranked #6 in Portland Business Journal’s 2014 list of top area real estate developers. The list is based on the number of square feet developed in Portland and projects planned for the upcoming years. NOTE: A subscription is required to view this article.

August 2014 – Burnside Bridgehead project’s design approved – DJC Oregon