Frolic is a mission-driven development company seeking to fundamentally change the way cities transform as pressure for development increases. They are grounded in a belief that thoughtful development can lead to creating just, equitable, and kind cities. They specialize in urban cohousing with projects designed to foster community and be financially accessible to a broader population than is currently supported by the homeownership market.
Their model uses a cooperative financing structure which enables crowd-investing and a decoupling of share ownership and tenancy. This allows residents to act as tenants of the project without requiring a large upfront down payment. They can then own as much of the project as they can afford and desire to own. It also allows others in the neighborhood to buy shares in the project and invest in a community asset. Over time, low-income residents can purchase more shares and build additional equity in their home. The Frolic model links land owners who want to age-in-place and middle-income first time homebuyers. Partnering with land-owners to co-develop their property, Frolic allows them to avoid displacement and financially benefit from redeveloping their lot.
For a more detailed description of the model visit the following thesis they co-wrote for their masters programs in City Planning and Real Estate Development. https://tinyurl.com/y5ekxvgf
Tamara Knox graduated from MIT in 2019 with Master in City Planning and Master of Science in Real Estate Development degrees. She graduated from Stanford University with honors in 2012 majoring in Urban Studies. Her honors thesis measured the land value impact of rail focusing on the Red Line in Los Angeles. Between her studies, she worked for an urban economics consulting firm in Berkeley called Economic and Planning Systems where she analyzed the impact development projects have on cities and assisted cities on their affordable housing policies. She also worked for a development firm in Los Angeles specializing in wholesale commercial kitchens called Civic Enterprise. During her time at MIT, she won first place in the 2017 Federal Home Loan Bank of Boston Affordable Housing Development Competition. This was an interdisciplinary team project comprised of architecture, real estate, public policy and planning students from MIT and Harvard. At MIT, she focused her studies on alternative financial housing models and explored how to incorporate holistic urban planning values and human-scale design in thoughtful development.
Joshua Morrison is a landscape architect and urban planner educated at the University of Copenhagen (MLA), the Massachussets Institute of Technology (MCP), and Brown University (environmental design). As a designer, he specializes in community design and public space, with a particular interest in how built form encourages social interaction. He regularly facilitates participatory design processes and has worked with communities in South Africa, Sweden, Denmark, and the U.S. in co-creating public realm. As an urban planner, he works with the relationship of transportation and housing in creating just, diverse, and kind living environments. Before co-founding Frolic and completing his masters degree at MIT, he had 8 years of experience working as an urban designer at Fundament, the World Bank, the U.S. Department of Transportation, and Gehl Architects. He deeply enjoys teaching and is a faculty of urban studies and architecture at DIS, Copenhagen, where he has taught courses in bicycle urbanism and urban design. He has also been a guest lecturer at Brown University and MIT.