Technological Innovations: CARLA

Technological Innovations
Project Number:
Beverly Willis & Associates Architects
San Francisco, California
Project Name:
Technological Innovations: CARLA
CARLA, or Computerized Approach to Residential Land Analysis, is a proprietary software package developed in-house by Willis and Associates, Inc. Architects and Planners (WAI) from 1971. The rapid assessment tool was publicly introduced through marketing brochures in 1974 as the logical application of “space age” technologies. It was designed to address the complexities of large-scale suburban land development facing builders, developers, and environmental planners at the time.

For complete details on the development and use of CARLA, please see: CARLA.


  • “Carla (Computerized Approach to Residential Land Analysis).” World Cottage, Southampton, NY. 29 April 2000.


  • Wright, Gwendolyn. USA – Modern Architectures in History. London: Reaction Books, 2008: 208.
  • Willis, Beverly. “The Environmental Decision-Making Process,” in Ravinder K. Jain and Bruce M. Hutchings, eds. Environmental Impact Analysis: Emerging Issues in Planning. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1978.
  • MacDonald, Kenneth. “Case History I: Computer Aids in Project Design, Helps Allay Community Opposition.” National Real Estate Investor 19 December 1977: 26.
  • McGrath, David J. “A-E Firm Computerized Path to Large-Scale Housing.” Engineering News-Record 4 November 1976: cover story.
  • Willis, Beverly. “Pre-planning: Socio-economic Problems Facing Industry.” Coal Mining and Processing June 1976.
  • Willis, Beverly. “How a California Firm ‘Grew Up’ with the Computer.” AIA Journal January 1976: 48, 64.
  • Willis, Beverly. “Site Selection and Planning: Today’s Planning Dilemma.” Condominium World Winter 1975.
  • Willis, Beverly. “Development of a Methodology for Environmental Data Evaluation.” Western Building Design 12 December 1975: 9-10.
  • Willis, Beverly. “Site Selection and Planning: Current Technologies Can Ease Complexities, Speed Effective Decision.” Condominium World Autumn 1974.
  • “Architect Goes Easy on Bulldozer.” Washington Post 27 September 1975.
  • Allen, Sidney P. “CARLA Races to Get Job Done.” San Francisco Chronicle 7 September 1975.
  • Willis, Beverly and Ronald S. Graybeal. “Computerized Financial Analysis.” in Harry A. Golemon, ed. Financing Real Estate Development. New Jersey: Aloray, 1974.
  • Ryder, Sharon Lee. “Getting at the Issues.” Progressive Architecture June 1974: 82-87.
  • Carlston, Lon M. “New Approach Offers Savings.” The Sunday Tribune 28 April 1974.
  • “Space Age Land Planning.” Las Vegas Sun 14 April 1974.
  • “New Land Planning Techniques Change Condominium Approach.” San Francisco California Daily Pacific Builder 11 April 1974.
  • Turpin, Dick. “Condo-mania Keeps Growing.” Los Angeles Times 7 April 1974.
  • “Computer Moves Into Land Studies.” San Francisco Sunday Examiner & Chronicle 9 September 1973.
  • “Saving Seen in Planning by Computer.” Los Angeles Times 2 September 1973.
  • “Economic Probes, Key to Developer’s Success, Enhanced by Computers.” Building Design & Construction June 1972: 44-46.