Meet Matt Hoffman, Senior Planner
I hail from Detroit—Birmingham to be exact. If you ever want to engage in a long conversation about Detroit history, I’m your man. I now live in West Seattle with my wife, Sarah, and two girls, Sophie (eight years old) and Juliette (six years old).
What do you do at MFA?
I’m a senior planner at MFA in title, but what I do, in a nutshell, is assist clients in creating plans that help unlock underutilized land (often due to contamination or some other stigma). I often use redevelopment economics as a tool to help identify the hurdles to reuse and then with that knowledge create a road map. I love taking dirty dirt and seeing it put back to use, especially in communities that could use a boost.
What’s rewarding about your job?
Number one is helping clients unlock “problem” areas in their jurisdiction, and number two is the joy I get from collaborating with equally passionate coworkers and partner firms.
Why is what you do important?
What MFA and I do is important because we help clients reactivate vacant or underutilized properties. This helps generate new jobs, provide land for new housing, and/or improve quality of life.
What skills do you bring to your work?
A blend of technical skills (real estate fundamentals, valuation, pro forma modeling, Tableau, GIS, and relational databases) with strategy (transactional structures, planning nuts and bolts, and good old-fashioned experiences).
What do you like to do off the clock?
Most of my free time is spent goofing off with my family and doing a fair amount of living vicariously/projecting through/on my kids. Things like hiking, soccer, skateboarding (okay, watching my daughter skateboard), and simple household science experiments. If it weren’t for them, I’d do more reading, puzzles, and household repairs (which I enjoy).
If you were not a senior planner, what would you be?
A historian, but one who doesn’t just explain the past. One who works to ensure learnings from the past are applied—oh, and one who goes on great adventures to uncover the past like Indiana Jones.
What’s on your bucket list?
Within reach . . . a trail marathon. I love running through the woods. It’s just a matter of finding the time. I’d also like to take a dog-sledding tour in Alaska.