In the past couple of years as the building industry has come out of the downturn, there’s been a flurry of displaced development and acquisition folks who’ve found equity sources to get new operations up and running.

Ed Easley, who ran JPI West for Dallas-based JPI from 1996 to 2003 and then started his own company, Carlsbad-based Crown Pacific Properties, is back in the mix again, with Carlsbad-based Urban West.

And, like former JPI vets Jim Butz, CEO for McLean, Va.-based JAG, and Pretlow Riddick, president and principal of Bedford, Mass.-based Criterion Development Partners, Easley has found financial backing.

Last month, El Paso, Texas-based Hunt Cos., a top 10 builder with a heavy focus in military housing, agreed to invest at the entity level in a new venture with Urban West. With that backing, Easley can focus on development and acquisition deals in Arizona, California and Washington.

For Hunt, the venture offers the chance to capture market-rate opportunities in the Western United States.