CoreNet NYC's Special Interest Groups Foster Community and Conversation on Specific Topics

CoreNet NYC’s Special Interest Group Committees (SIG Committees) are industry-focused forums for members to convene over targeted topics, while networking and sharing best practices. These Groups consist of a Law SIG; Financial SIG; Technology, Advertising and Media Industry SIG, as well as Workplace SIG. Exclusive to corporate end-users within the appropriate industry sector, participants discuss current issues, brainstorm and help develop measurable real estate solutions. CoreNet SIG Committees are led by well-known end-users in commercial real estate and their members are comprised of trailblazers in the industry.

On October 11th, the Finance SIG hosted a group dinner at Craft Restaurant. The goal of the intimate gathering was to provide a space for end-user commercial real estate professionals to openly discuss business and ideas. They discussed their responsibility to educate their own organizations on the design and purpose of their potential future space. When done correctly, this allows internal departments to strategically utilize their office space to stimulate business growth and development. Specific topics of discussion included open-plan offices, connection in the digital world, collaboration in the workplace and the future of office wellness programs.

“The intimate group had a productive discussion on relevant issues pertaining to our specific end-user professions,” said Mark Brooks, Co-Chair of the Finance SIG Committee. “The Finance SIG is comprised of a great group of innovative professionals and I always leave meetings with new knowledge, guidance and perspectives on the real estate industry.”

“We discussed interesting issues at this meeting’s group dinner,” said Melissa Marsh, Senior Managing Director at Savills Studley. “The industry is rapidly changing, and we evaluated if new methods, such as open-office space and integration of technology, have a negative or positive influence on traditional practices. It is always refreshing to get another new perspective on topics that can be incorporated into many aspects of my role.”

“It can be difficult to keep up with the transformation of the real estate industry in the digital era,” said Vito Bacarella, Managing Director, UBS and Chair of the CoreNet NYC SIG Committees. “The Finance SIG meetings present the perfect opportunity to sit and critically analyze subjects outside of the office. Furthermore, it is a great way to catch up on what other businesses are doing to stay up-to-date with trending topics and technologies.”

CoreNet NYC’s Special Interest Groups provide an opportunity for members to make connections, learn and grow in an environment that results in a true sense of belonging. These sub-committees help professionals develop their careers within tight-knit groups that consistently support one another. To learn more about the Special Interest Groups and other CoreNet NYC committees, please click here.

CoreNet NYC’s Young Leader Committee Raises Money For Breast Cancer Research

One of the CoreNet NYC Young Leader Committee’s initiatives over the past several years has been to provide community service opportunities to CoreNet members. This committee has been partnering with other non-profit organizations to serve and make a positive impact in the wider community outside of the corporate real estate industry. This community service initiative now has more than 50 CoreNet members participate in over fifteen community service events throughout the year.

The Young Leader Committee itself is dedicated to serving the educational and networking needs of each member under the age of 35 in the corporate real estate industry by offering professional development, networking and community service opportunities catered to the interests of this age group.

One of the most recent community outreach partnerships has been with The Pink Agenda, an appropriate partnership with the CoreNet Young Leaders Committee as The Pink Agenda focuses on raising funding for breast cancer research and support to other young professionals who are affected by this disease. The Pink Agenda believes that tomorrow’s cure starts with today’s action.

To support increased awareness and help raise funds for The Pink Agenda, the Young Leaders Committee organized a Ride for Charity Event on October 3. The event sold out with close to 50 riders and 21 corporate sponsors resulting in $16,356 raised that will directly support breast cancer research. The ride was an engaging and fun way to raise awareness for this cause and gave attendees an opportunity to focus on their own health and wellness. After the ride, riders caught up with industry colleagues and networked over smoothies and healthy snacks; many remarked it was a welcome atmosphere change from the typical corporate networking over cocktails.  

“The ‘Ride for Breast Cancer Research’ enabled CoreNet to draw attention to a disease that affects the lives of many people,” said Zachary Vaughn, Senior Associate of Enterprise Real Estate Advisory at WeWork. “In addition, it helped educate the younger generation about health risks they need to be aware of and some of the resources for prevention. We look forward to continued involvement with The Pink Agenda and organizations doing similar important work.”

In addition, several members of the CoreNet Young Leaders Committee also attended The Pink Agenda Gala on October 11 to further support this organization and the work they are doing. The Pink Agenda was very thankful for the volunteer hours and work that went into the event to make the ride so successful. The funds raised will cover 327 hours of breast cancer research.

The CoreNet Young Leaders Committee also partners with The Special Olympics and Streetwise Partners to provide opportunities for additional community outreach that is open to the entire CoreNet New York Chapter community to participate in. You can find more information about how to get involved by following this link:

The CoreNet NYC Coro Leadership New York Program Announces 2018 Scholarship Recipients 

The CoreNet NYC Chapter is pleased to continue its partnership with Coro, an organization with a mission to shape the City’s future. Coro New York is the premier leadership training organization that delivers the skills, knowledge, and network to lead change. Over the last 18 years, more than 2,500 participants have gone through the NYC Coro Civic Leadership Program which equips each participant with the necessary skills to implement change in New York City and beyond. Coro aims to train ethical, diverse civic leaders nationwide and has notable alumni including city Council members, Commissioners, executive directors and entrepreneurs.

The Coro Leadership Program puts an emphasis on teaching and implementing change within the public sector. Participants are encouraged to learn the landscape of NYC’s government structure and raise their personal political awareness. From there, they learn how to ask insightful questions and facilitate productive conversation. Upon competition of the program, participants are equipped with the skills to create meaningful change in their communities. Coro is proud to have a network of thousands of alumni that return year after year to help educate its new participants, two of which are receiving this year’s scholarships.

The 2018 CoreNet NYC Coro Leadership scholarship recipients are Alison Kwiatkowski and Alexandra Sutherland-Brown. Both use their deep understanding of how the City works to lead change in their communities and respective organizations. We are pleased to highlight these women below:


Alison Kwiatkowski, Vice President, Project and Development Services, Deutsche Bank for JLL

As a Vice President with JLL, Alison Kwiatkowski serves as the Americas Project and Development Services Team Lead for the Deutsche Bank Account. In this role, Alison guides strategy and project delivery throughout the North and South American real estate portfolio. She holds a Master of Science in Real Estate Development from New York University and a Bachelor of Arts in Architecture from the University of Pennsylvania.

Alison is driven to shape New York beyond just her employment. She believes in an interdisciplinary, human-centric approach to real estate and her civic duties and is motivated by her sense of responsibility and desire to create a positive impact. She applied for the Coro Leadership New York program to build a greater understanding of the landscape of the City and improve her skills sets to make a difference. As she moves into the next chapter of her life, Alison is determined to move towards a more community-focused career. She sees the Leadership New York program as a great opportunity to help guide that transition.


Alexandra Sutherland-Brown, Senior Consultant, Karp Strategies

Alexandra Sutherland-Brown joined Karp Strategies as an urban planning strategist with demonstrated expertise in urban and graphic design, communication strategy, and stakeholder engagement. Formerly at the NYC Department of City Planning, Alexandra is a physical planner and communications professional who is sensitive to the human experience of cities and neighborhoods. She has worked extensively to build connections among communities and project teams by creating innovative outreach and communications strategies in urban planning contexts. She delivers clearly articulated narratives through a combination of graphics and writing. Ali is known for her empathetic, efficient, and collaborative approach to multi stakeholder projects.

Alexandra applied the Coro Leadership New York program because she strives to amplify diverse voices in her professional and personal life within the City. Through the program, she plans to explore how she can use her power and privilege of her business position to most effectively drive critical conversations that affect mental health outcomes for all. She is an avid believer that the built environment directly impacts individual mental illness and seeks to create healthier environments through her work. In addition to this, she hopes the skills she will develop through the program will positively influence the growth of her small firm.

Congratulations to our 2018 Coro Leadership Program Participants. 

For more information on Coro New York, please visit:

2018 CoreNet NYC Annual Meeting Chapter Award Winners

Following our 2018 CoreNet NYC Annual Meeting, we caught up with our award winners, Daniel Fishbein, Head of Global Real Estate at CIT and Corporate Executive of the Year; Laurie Hutner, Executive Vice President of WB Wood and Service Provider of the Year; and Chris Kelly, Co-Founder, President & CEO of Convene and the Young Leader of the Year. They discussed CoreNet’s effect on their professional lives and shared how they are successfully navigating the commercial real estate industry.


Daniel Fishbein
commented that CoreNet is ideal for those who want to understand business trends in a way that makes them ‘big picture’ thinkers that contribute to companies beyond execution of transactions and projects. “I use ideas, information, and contacts gained from CoreNet participation in my job almost every day,” he said. “For example, if I hadn’t didn’t have exposure to workplace strategies being deployed by other CoreNet members I couldn’t have guided my company through a period of rethinking our strategy. CoreNet offers an opportunity to ask my peers how they handled any number of topics such as organizational changes, location decisions, and technology improvements.” 

When it comes to professional success and leading as a Corporate Executive, Dan’s advice is to take a step back sometimes and understand the motivations of people with different experiences and objectives. He adds that personally, he has made it a point to observe people who are particularly successful at motivating other people. Looking forward, he understands that the only certainty in life is that things change, and he plans to embrace it. As building design and operation is challenged with growing expectations for vibrant “experiential” work environments, adapting new technologies will be integral to success. For now, Dan has some long-term projects from which results may be three years off, and he says he will always seek projects which are new to him, like the Bank of the Future project his team kicked off several months ago. 

“I’m also still a real estate person at heart. Sounds funny, but I’ve always derived great satisfaction from closing a ‘good deal,’ and those will certainly continue.  In the more distant future, I’d like to teach college students.”    


Laurie Hutner sought out CoreNet in the 90’s when she was looking for organizations that would assist her in networking and gaining further insight into the Real Estate Community. Former CoreNet President Gina Rizzo from Herman Miller advised her that CoreNet would be a great option. The organization has assisted Laurie in learning about her clients’ interests through the many programs that are offered, and in turn, educated her so she can speak eloquently with them. In addition to the programs that CoreNet offers, she was able to meet many contacts that could assist her and that, likewise, she could assist in their careers.

“One of the most memorable experiences I had was volunteering to be a CoreNet Mentor,” she said. “My mentee was literally from a competing firm, but my mentoring was all about assisting her in advancing her career both in stature and compensation. Laurie thinks the Mentoring Committee is a major plus for CoreNet as it truly highlights one of the goals of the organization. Another experience was assisting in the launch and continuation of the New Member reception held every spring.” The event offers new members the opportunity to receive an overview of the NYC Chapter and feel welcomed.

“Assisting people in their careers is part of my DNA, and it truly gives me so much satisfaction to lend my time in helping people advance in their careers and build self-confidence,” she said.

Her advice on making the most of networking organizations like CoreNet is COMMITMENT. The only way for any member of any organization to benefit both the organization and themselves is to volunteer and participate.

Chris Kelly was an industry outsider and just 27 years old when he and his partner Ryan Simonetti started Convene. The idea of doing business with Fortune 500 companies felt very intimidating to him at that time; being a member of CoreNet shrank the corporate real estate industry so it felt like a trusted network of advisors instead of an unapproachable club of big companies.

As an entrepreneur, he believes that where there’s change, there’s opportunity. His connections through CoreNet paired with curiosity, clarity, and ‘GRIT’ enabled him and co-founder Ryan to build Convene from idea to reality. 

“Our vision was informed by plotting observable trends into the future and imagining talent-centric workplaces in tenant-centric buildings,” he said. “This led us to paint a very clear picture of what we thought the office building of the future would look like, and we executed that vision through practicing ‘GRIT’, which we define as ‘passion and perseverance in pursuit of long term goals.’ We also honor a commitment to improving the company to be one percent better every day.”

When it comes to continued professional success, Chris has observed that most established businesses are laser focused on short-term results and protecting their existing assets, leaving the door wide open to smaller, faster moving, more open-minded players to own the future. “Build a thesis around where you think the world is headed and position yourself ahead of it,” he said in closing.

A special thank you and congratulations to our exceptional award winners for their continued involvement and commitment to the CoreNet NYC mission.

For more information on learning and volunteer opportunities visit:

June 2018 Young Leader Spotlight of the Month

Meet Chelsea Flaim, M Moser Associates. As a member of the CoreNet NYC Young Leader Committee, Chelsea is committed to ensuring that future real estate leaders have access to educational resources and networking opportunities with their peers, as well as senior professionals, to support their professional development and growth.


We caught up with Chelsea for a Q&A to learn more about what makes her a leader in today’s real estate industry. Check it out!

Meet - David Mock, Milrose Consultants. As a member of the CoreNet NYC Young Leader Committee, David is committed to planning unofficial networking events for our group called “Off the Records”—where we basically invite the under 35 year old portion of membership out to happy hours. 

We caught up with David for a Q&A to learn more about what makes him a leader in today’s real estate industry. Check it out!

Women's Group: A Conversation with Erin Loos Cutraro, Founder and CEO of She Should Run

After the resounding success of CoreNet Global NYC Women’s Group event with Erin Loos Cutraro, Founder and CEO of She Should Run, held on Wednesday, May 2nd at Viacom, we decided to catch up with our guest speaker for a quick recap of some of the evening’s major themes and to get her input on actionable solutions businesswomen and their allies can implement today.

Why did you start She Should Run?

Erin Loos Curaro: I started She Should Run in 2011 after working in politics for a number of years with active candidates running for office across the country because what I found, cycle after political cycle, was that despite all the talent and resources allocated to help women get elected, there was still little progress being made in terms of the overall percentage of women serving in elected office. It felt like there had to be another way to address the problem because using the traditional playbook was not going to create gender equality in our lifetime.

The research is clear that when women run for office, they win at the same rate as men, but there just aren’t enough women who are at the table in politics. She Should Run was born as a simple idea, where we created an online tool where anyone could submit information about a woman they knew who should think about running for office. Our team would then reach out to those women, and from there it took off. This tool is still active on our website today and continues to be the #1-way people come into the She Should Run community.

What is the mission of She Should Run?

Erin: Our mission is simply to encourage women to run for office in the United States and our goal is to encourage 250,000 women to do so by the year 2030.

Was there a specific moment in your life that spurred you to get involved in politics? How was the idea of being politically active demystified for you?

For me it was a hunger for learning and having a wider purpose. I found my way to politics through volunteering, so it was completely outside of my professional role at the time. I started getting to know different causes that were very particular to my community and spent a lot of time talking to folks in the neighborhood about what issues mattered to them and had an “ah-ha moment” of the change that is possible when policy is involved.

As I saw what was possible in politics, I started following some local and federal races and got to know more people who were involved in political circles. Then one day a friend reached out to me who knew I had an interest in being around really smart people who were getting things done in their communities, and asked me to consider joining a campaign staff that was forming for a state-wide race in Missouri. At first, I thought it was crazy because I had a secure job, so leaving it to go work for very little money seemed out of question. However, as I thought about it, I knew it was something I needed to try, so I joined the campaign and that was my entry into politics.

During the presentation you mentioned that women often do not run because they do not see themselves as qualified. How does She Should Run actively work to counter these perceptions? What programs or exercises do you recommend in shifting women’s attitudes toward themselves as leaders?

Our flagship program is the She Should Run incubator and it is a free, virtual program that is a self-guided series of resources women can access. It helps women become more aware on multiple fronts. First, it encourages self-awareness of their own qualifications as a candidate as well as how the women in the She Should Run community can be helpful to those who are also thinking of running for office. This is so important because women are often not only hard on ourselves when questioning whether we have what it takes, but we also are hard on one another – even if unintentionally. Therefore, the SSR community asks women to recognize when they are holding themselves to too high of a standard, and when they might be doing so for others as well.

My highest recommendation for shifting attitudes is to always be encouraging.

You cited an important reason we need women in office is because they bring unique experiences that inform policy, and that we cannot have the best, most comprehensive policy making decisions if there is not proper representation. Is there a specific example of how you’ve seen this play out?

The examples of this are countless, but perhaps one of the most obvious examples would be the numerous occasions when policies are being crafted that will have a huge impact on working women in our country without any working women at the table.

I also want to be careful in saying that women don’t bring just one perspective to the table, they bring a variety of perspectives that should be represented when any policy decisions are made. Any and all policies in our country have a high likelihood of impacting women just as much as they will men, but we can’t arrive at the smartest and best solutions if we don’t have women at the table, and a variety of women at that.

What excites you most about the next generation of female leaders and the way they approach being politically involved in the age of tech and information sharing?

With this next generation there is a natural and enthusiastic ability to break down barriers and connect people with others that they may not have been able to before. I’ve also seen that young people are less and less likely to identify with political parties – they don’t need those labels to make a difference, but they are purpose driven and want to make a difference, so I think that will contribute to a healthier democracy in our future where people are more informed and engaged.

Any there any other thoughts or ideas you would like to share with our CoreNet members?

I just want to make it clear that while some people may think they couldn’t possibly get involved in politics and balance their current careers, there are in fact so many ways for a person to get involved, and it does not have to be an either/or. Beyond running for office in a part-time or volunteer role, you can choose to help someone else who is already running, or leverage your position of power within your current organization to help a social cause. Champions within private sector organizations who have figured out how to leverage their existing circles of influence are the most helpful to our mission. Everyone can play a role.  

CoreNet 2018 Annual Dinner Design Spotlight

The CoreNet 2018 Annual Dinner, hosted aboard The Intrepid, featured two exhibitions for this year’s Design Spotlight. The first, titled, “Transcender” was a collaboration between AFD Contract Furniture and Banco Popular. The second, “Where is the Cloud?” was by Scott Brownrigg and Crown Architecture & Consulting, D.P.C. Both designs explored the dinner theme of “Blurring the Lines,” and each team was given four tickets to the CoreNet Golf Outing. Descriptions of each concept for the submissions are detailed below and illustrated by corresponding photos.


“When you enter this "box" you'll be looking at transparent walls with photos and tiny mirrors attached, reflecting your image in multiple fractions. The images that will accompany your reflections are of people and objects that, one way or another, participated in the creation of Transcending. As you enter, you'll also become a participant, changing the object and giving it purpose. This interconnection will create a new, virtual reality, blurring the lines of space and time. You may sit on the stool and rotate with it, continually altering the reflections as you go. Like today's reality, in a global world, where lines that used to clearly define and limit, exist no longer and the boundaries are blurred forever.”


Where is the Cloud

“In addition to the ephemeral social dynamics of culture, class, race, and power, our world today is increasingly influenced by invisible digital forces. The most relevant, of course, is how our data is computed, moved, stored and shared, represented by the abstract “cloud.” With lights, a projector, and a cloud, we create a conceptual data cloud model. The model will allow people to come together and think deeper about what and how data is moving around them even though they can’t physically see or feel it, and to contemplate how their lives have changed since the dawn of the Digital Age.”


IN THE SPOTLIGHT:  CoreNet NYC Women’s Community Mentorship Program

A Series of Interviews With Mentors and Mentees 
Part II: Progress Report

CoreNet NYC Women’s Community, chaired by Debra Cole (HLW) and Shelly Bloch (Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom), sponsors an annual Mentorship Program that runs from September through May each year. Headed by Ellen Herman (JLL), Pat Hildebrant (JFK&M Consulting Group, LLC) and Lisa Speltz (Angelo Gordon & Co.), the mentorship program partners professionals at any stage in their career with seasoned professionals to facilitate their personal growth and professional development.  

With the fourth year of the program well underway, we’re checking back in with our two featured pairs of mentors and mentees as they continue working their way through the program. As a reminder, below are the featured pairs who graciously agreed to be interviewed throughout this year’s program, offering us their insights and experience:

Pair #1:

Mentee: Annemarie Fleming, Business Development at MovePlan

Mentor: Tracy Kelliher, Corporate Real Estate industry leader, most recently at American Express

Pair #2:

Mentee: Ben Mullen, BMDC Development & Construction

Mentor: Stephen Peca, Managing Director, Concourse Realty Group

In the first segment at year-end 2016, we heard from each interviewee about their expectations going into the program.   For this next round of interviews, we asked each participant how the program is going, in light of initial expectations, and what they have found to be challenging.

Q: Has the mentoring program met your expectations? How so or why not?

Tracy: “Yes. Actually in some ways it has exceeded my expectations.  I think they did an excellent job pairing individuals who have both complementary background and similar goals.  I also think the group meetings are working to bring everyone together and establish a sense of community.”

Annemarie: “Yes, the CoreNet Mentorship program has exceeded my expectations.  Not only am I learning from my mentor Tracy Kelliher, we have become friends, too.”

Stephen: “I think this is a question to be better asked of the mentee. As a mentor, I am in a position of providing a service.”

Ben: “Overall the program has met and exceeded expectations. It set me up with a good mentor. The time commitment isn’t tremendous which allows both of us to concentrate on our jobs and focus on what I want to get out of the mentorship program when we do meet. Though my expectations were different when I first joined due to a different job at the time, the program still works great for my new position.”


Q: What is challenging about maintaining regular check-ins or any other aspect of the program?

Tracy: “We are good about scheduling phone check-ins and getting together before or after CoreNet functions/meetings. Because we come from different locations, it's a bit challenging to set up regular in-person meetings. I think that is just the reality of NYC commuting."

Annemarie: “In the new year, Tracy and I decided to set a weekly check-in call.  Every Monday morning we speak and check in on the goals that we have set for the previous week and use this time to discuss any additional points of interest. This approach has brought us more structure and increased the benefit of being a mentee even more.”

Stephen: “The challenge of meeting is simply scheduling. We always find time to meet; it just may not be as soon as hoped.”

Ben: “Yes, it has been challenging. My mentor does a lot of traveling and I have been very busy in the new year with work. Carving out some time does prove a challenge, but we do keep in touch regularly through email.”


Q: Have you been able to put any new perspectives gained from your mentor/mentee into practice?

Tracy: “Yes, just the other day my mentee and I were talking about how to ask for what you want in business settings, and it reminded me to do just that.”

Annemarie: “Getting to know and work with Tracy as my mentor has been a great experience. She brings so much insight from her vast and diverse experience in both Real Estate and Business Operations. She challenges me to think of new approaches and this has been a very positive experience for me.”

Stephen was more curious about how his mentee would respond to this question, as “his situation is different than most mentees. I think he has received useful information and direction.”

Ben: “Yes, many suggestions from my mentor I have reviewed and started putting into practice.”


2016 Scholarship Winner Profiles

Anthony Feenick 

I am currently a second year MBA student at Columbia Business School and prior to that worked in J.P. Morgan’s Private Bank for 5 years in Chicago and New York. In Chicago, I worked with a team that underwrote structured loans to the wealthiest of the bank’s clients and families, while in New York, I worked on a team that created custom analytics and modelling for business owners and corporate executives.

I became interested in real estate at J.P. Morgan through my work with real estate executives, and was drawn to their desire to change neighborhoods and communities through their investments (in addition to generating returns!) I’m heading to Tishman Speyer – where I interned this summer – when I graduate and hope to focus on office and residential development in and around New York City.

Changing my career trajectory while at Columbia Business School was challenging from the start. I came in with no direct experience and knew that I had to learn as much from my peers as I could to make the transition successfully. Luckily for me the alumni, faculty and students, with whom I worked were ready and willing to help me achieve my goals. If I could give one piece of advice to students seeking a career in real estate, it would be to network! This is an industry in which relationships matter and people want to help. As a new member of CoreNet, I hope to meet even more accomplished real estate professionals across sectors of the industry and attend upcoming conferences. I’m particularly excited to learn more about how real estate decisions are made in different industries; every company touches real estate in a unique way and I’d love to learn more about how those decisions affect the bottom line and customer experience. It’s an amazing community and I can’t wait to be a part of it.

Outside of my activities at school, I love exploring and playing at the outdoor basketball courts of NYC, reading as much as I can and running. I’m lacing up for my 3rd marathon this spring in Los Angeles and hope to beat my best personal time.

Arthur Doyle

I have been working as an Environmental Consultant for nearly ten years with the firm of JLC Environmental Consultants, Inc., a twenty-person-firm located in Chelsea. My work involves hazardous materials identification and management. As the head of the  Asbestos Management Division at JLC, I am involved in fielding inquiries from architects, property managers, construction managers, and engineers, concerning asbestos testing and management. I help my clients manage and mitigate asbestos risk through removal of the material or monitoring of the material in-place.

I graduated from Wesleyan University in 1993 with a degree in biology but without knowing what to do with the rest of my professional life. My interest in writing and research led me to work as a paralegal for a major NYC law firm. While I was able to apply my research skills and to some extent my love of writing, I did not get the full sense of accomplishment and fulfillment, for which I so desperately yearned. So I searched within myself and ultimately discovered that I wanted to use my science knowledge and interest to help people on a basic level. I started with JLC in the spring of 2007, and found the work to be a natural professional fit. I am able to use my writing and analytical skills consistently. I am also able to see, sometimes almost instantaneously, the positive impact of my efforts.

However, I had recently explored opportunities in Construction Management and Development. This was  a natural cultivation of an interest that stems from the ties to my clients and colleagues in the construction and real estate fields. This interest has led to me to pursue a
Master’s degree in Construction Management at New York University Schack Institute of Real Estate. My ultimate goal is to develop management skills and knowledge for use in a growing and exciting field, in which I can concurrently apply my science background.

CoreNet presents an extraordinary opportunity to build my network and to develop rapport with real estate and construction professionals. As a construction management student, I will learn much more about the complexity and diversity of the real estate industry and will stay on top of the latest trends through my networking.

My advice to up-and comers in the construction and real estate fields is to have an open mind and be persistent. The next great career change will be possible by building and maintaining a viable professional network, staying on top of the trends in the real estate field, and keeping your resume and credentials up-to-date.

Finally, I would consider my hobbies to be the study of meteorology, reading of inspirational literature, and writing. I also love to fish occasionally!


Like Nowhere Else: Design NYC

"Everything is more expensive in New York, and that coupled with tight square footage requires designers to be more creative. Europe’s been doing more with less for a long time, and New York is following Europe’s example with the use of remedies like benching in office and commercial design.” — Ginger Gilden

One glance at the NYC skyline reveals to even  a casual observer that many minds and much talent created this amazing island. Design plays a key role, and while styles have clearly evolved over the years, on occasion they’ve come full circle. We had the opportunity to talk this fall with two individuals who are intimately involved in New York’s design community. Benjamin Prosky is the executive director of The Center for Architecture and AIA New York, which is the country’s oldest and largest chapter of the American Institute  of Architects; and Ginger Gilden is president of the  New  York Chapter  of IIDA, the International Interior Design Association’s 800-member chapter. She is senior designer and associate at IA Interior Architects. Both interviewees relished the chance to talk about design in NYC and both consider NYC a world leader in trends and innovation. 

New York City’s high density necessitates creative spatial solutions. “It requires a lot of designers to create transportation systems and comfort- able places to live and work in such a densely developed urban core,” said Prosky. Tearing down historic edifices is not always the answer. As many of New York’s beloved older buildings become outdated,architects are seeking ways to revitalize and preserve them.

Rather than demolish them, New York architects are quenching their constant thirst for innovation in retro- fitting and repurposing the city’s older buildings for contemporary uses. And this innovative thirst, according to Prosky, is part of what makes New York’s design globally competitive. “In fact, at The Center for Architecture we devoted our fall 2016 exhibit, Authenticity and Innovation, to exem- plary projects that creatively adapt old buildings for new uses.”

Gilden cited the need for flexibility in design because of density. “Everything is more expensive in New York, and that coupled with tight square footage requires designers to be more creative. Europe’s been doing more with less for a long time, and New York is follow- ing Europe’s example with the use of remedies like benching in office and commercial design.”

Prosky discussed the need for flexibility and cited work sharing as an example. He also stressed the need for efficiency in design. Architects are designing more spaces for multiple uses, a trend that clients are heartily embracing.

While green building is becoming an outdated buzz phrase, many older buildings are ideal for retrofit and can become quite sustainable,  according to Prosky.  “We  took  seriously  Mayor deBlasio’s 80 x 50 Challenge.”  This  program encourages the city to accelerate  efforts  to make buildings and vehicles significantly more energy efficient and to achieve the goal of zero  waste to landfills. Most people assume that the majority of emissions come from automobiles, but in fact, three quarters of emissions come from buildings. “AIANY has created a task-force to work on guidelines, including tax credit proposals and new construction processes, to make net zero viable,” said Prosky.

As the next generation considers career paths, do architecture and interior design hold promise for good- paying jobs?

In architecture, the educational costs can leave students $200,000 in debt, with starting salaries ranging in   the
$40,000 to $50,000 range. “Starting salaries are sometimes less than entry-level teachers,” said Prosky. But there’s an upside. “Our AIA  New York Emerging New York Architects Committee is supporting a bill for reimbursement of student loans through  community   service,   and we will also be working to increase scholarship funds.”

Both careers have also stepped outside their traditional borders. “Interior designers have broadened their talents to offer new services like change management, workplace strategy,  and  project  management,” said Gilden. “It’s our job to get our clients to push the boundaries, to get them to think about flexible workspaces and ergonomics.”

During the recent economic downturn, many architects couldn’t get work and pursued other jobs. “Architects are great problem solvers, and those skills can be applied elsewhere,” said Prosky. In the early 2000’s, fabrication and architectural research started to become integrated into design practices. Some architects have even begun to design websites for their clients in order to promote the buildings they are also designing.

According to Prosky, with technology enabling  the   profession  more  every year, the skills of an architect will continue to expand. Though technology cannot design, it can enhance outcomes. 3-D printing, for example, has impacted how architects work through the design process and plan construction.

For Gilden, interior design is more  than a career. It’s a way of living. “Designers are always researching their environments for new possibilities,” she said. “In today’s world, staying current is one of our biggest design issues.”

“Architects are optimists,” Prosky said. “They  are  up  to  the  challenge of building a  better  world.”  One  of the biggest challenges  for  NYC is  the coastline, where resiliency issues have transformed access and pushed designers to new heights. “We’re lining up realities with possibilities,” Prosky said. “The coastline has always been a primary asset, but it’s also now one of New York’s  greatest dangers.”

In an effort to respond to rising sea levels and super storms,  designers must create more adaptable designs. And resiliency has affected New York City’s building codes. After Hurricane Sandy, for example, flood-prone neighborhoods now require HVAC and other systems to be placed on roofs where they won’t be impacted. “It’s our responsibility to consider resiliency on every project,” said Gilden. “I  was working for a firm in the World Trade  Center, and our servers were in the basement, so we obviously lost them all. Now, we’re building disaster recovery into our projects at the outset.”

Looking forward, one of the biggest questions is how to design, repair, and maintain the old structures like bridges, highways, and transit systems that comprise New York’s deteriorating infrastructure. But New York being New York will make the difference. The support of Governor Cuomo has been a big boon. Prosky concluded, “New York has always been a design leader, and the  governor  is  looking to reinforce our infrastructure as an example for the rest of the country. Our design community has responded to say we are up for the challenge.”


Legendary Journalist Bob Woodward Captivates CoreNet Global Audience in Discussion on The Presidency, 2017 Outlook and Trump

The New York City Chapter of CoreNet Global’s Programs Committee recently welcomed the world-renowned two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and author Bob Woodward to host “The Age of the American Presidency – What Will 2017 Bring?,” a riveting discussion during what seems to be a pivotal moment in American history. 

Woodward, who has authored 18 bestselling books, has dedicated his legendary career to unlocking the secrets of the presidency from Nixon through Obama, as well as exploring centers of power in Washington, including the Supreme Court to the CIA and Congress. During the program, Woodward detailed the lessons learned from failures and successes of the past, as well as what voters can expect – and should demand – from President-Elect Donald Trump in 2017.

“As we go into the Trump era, we have to understand the centrality of the Commander-in-Chief’s authority and leadership,” said Woodward. “Whether for good, bad or in between, Trump is going to determine so much.”

Woodward also spoke on his fears for the future and optimisms alike. “My chief worry is a secret government. The people in government have increasing levels of power, the messengers have more power to manipulate and people have the power to wall themselves off. A judge said, ‘Democracies die in darkness.’ If we don’t know what’s going on and secret government prevails, we could partake in that darkness.” Woodward continued, “An act can’t be fully understood if the intentions aren’t taken into account and I don’t think Donald Trump’s intentions are to screw up the country—they’re ‘I want to fix things.’ He contradicts himself on that, for sure, but you have to give him the benefit of the doubt because he has stunning levels of power.”

Woodward concluded the event with a book signing of his famous title, “All the President’s Men.”



An Interview with Mark Benhar, President of Benhar Office Interiors

Q: What is one thing that no one knows about you?
A: I started my Sales career selling trade directories and mailing lists.
Q: What is the biggest challenge you’ve overcome?
A: Building a successful business from the ground up has been the biggest challenge I have overcome.
Q: Disruptive Innovation, what does it mean to you?
A: It happens everywhere, if you aren’t going to do it, someone else will – and don’t be surprised.
Q: What do you see five years down the road for the commercial real estate industry in New York?
A: Our world is changing so fast. I believe efficiencies with the use of new technology will be ubiquitous in all facets of the commercial real estate industry.



CoreNet NYC Women’s Community Mentorship Program
A series of interviews with Mentors and Mentees 
Part I: Expectations for the Program

CoreNet NYC Women’s Community, chaired by Debra Cole (HLW) and Shelly Bloch (Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom), sponsors an annual Mentorship Program that runs from September thru May and recently kicked off its fourth year with 30 participants. Headed by Ellen Herman (JLL), Pat Hildebrant (JFK&M Consulting Group, LLC) and Lisa Speltz (Angelo Gordon & Co.), the mentorship program partners professionals at any stage in their career with seasoned professionals to facilitate their personal growth and professional development.  

In this interview series, we’ll feature two pairs of mentors and their mentees as they progress from initial expectations at the start of the program to final reflections after the closing Graduation ceremony in May 2017. First, let’s meet the interviewees, who graciously agreed to allow us insights into their experience throughout the program:

Pair #1: 
Mentee: Annemarie Fleming 
Business Development at MovePlan 
Mentor: Tracy Kelliher 
Corporate Real Estate industry leader, most recently at American Express 

Pair #2:

Mentee: Ben Mullen
BMDC Development & Construction
Mentor: Stephen Peca
Managing Director, Concourse Realty Group

Some participants are new to the program while others, like Tracy Kelliher, looked forward to participating for a second time. The pairs were first introduced at the kick-off breakfast earlier this fall and have since begun to meet individually and/or at optional monthly gatherings hosted by the program.   For the first segment of our interview series, we asked each mentor and mentee to explain why they decided to participate in the program and what they are looking to gain from the experience.

Q: What motivated you to join this mentoring program?

Tracy: In addition to a colleague recommending that she look into the program, Tracy was also looking for ways to get more involved and connected with others in CoreNet. What was especially appealing was the structure of the program, which provides regular prompts to connect.

Annemarie: “In my current role, I work with clients who are preparing to move into newly constructed or renovated offices” so she joined the program to “gain a more global and holistic view of the corporate real estate function.”

Stephen: “I have been a mentor for the NYU Stern graduate degree programme and led the NYU Schack graduate degree internship for credit programme for a number of years… I like being a mentor; similar reason why I teach in graduate degree programmes and deliver executive education programmes.”

Ben: “In the past I have had tremendous managers who took me under their wing and were mentor’s to me. A couple of them did so inadvertently and a couple did so  with very specific intentions but both ways allowed me to learn and ask questions. These weren’t specifically mentorship programs as much as colleagues, so it did limit some of the questions I could ask. The chance to be in a more structured mentorship program with a mentor who is not a colleague or a manager removes any of those limitations. Additionally, the chance to meet a mentor from within the industry but a different sector allows for a fresh point of view on some of the questions that I may have already had answered.”

Q: What do you hope to take away from this experience?

Tracy: "Mentors get as much out of it as the mentees... a lot of people think that the time commitment is going to be excessive and that's really not the case. The program allows you to structure it into your schedule… You get the opportunity to build a relationship with another person who's in a different place than you, who you wouldn't necessarily get through another event or activity." 

Annemarie: “I want to gain insight into what a corporate real estate leader thinks about beyond just that moment of planning a relocation.  Of course, I hope to develop a fulfilling relationship with my mentor and meet others in this program along the way.”

Stephen: “My overall goal is to ensure that my assigned mentee has his or her questions answered. That is, any questions about career, job search, current employment issues and so on. I want to be a professional resource for my mentee.”

Ben: “I hope to be able to gain knowledge from a mentor who has experienced some of the same challenges I am going through starting my own company. I hope to be able to give back to the mentor a sense of satisfaction that their time and energy in helping me is useful and appreciated.”

Q: What was the importance of choosing CoreNet as the vehicle for your mentorship?

Tracy:  Beyond the structural benefits of the program, it also “focuses specifically on corporate real estate industry and people, so it’s immediately relevant. You already have similarities and shared experiences or perspectives.”

Annemarie: “There is no better organization to connect with to gain insight and build relationships with Corporate Real Estate leaders.”

Stephen: “I decided to work with the CoreNet mentoring programme last year after receiving an email invitation to do so… The CoreNet mentorship intrigued me since I would be working with a mentee that has been in the workplace for a number of years as opposed to a mentee seeking his or her first or second professional role.”

Ben: “CoreNet is a great vehicle for this mentorship because it brings a lot of people from the same industry together but all from different sectors within that industry. It’s an environment that forces you to see how many different segments are in this industry and how each group values different steps more or less importantly than I would.”

Q: What are your observations after attending the kick-off breakfast meeting?

Tracy: “There was good energy in the room… seemed like participants were engaged immediately.”  She stayed longer with her mentee, Annemarie, just chatting after the event had already ended, so it seems like a good match from the start!

Annemarie: “Tracy Kelliher and I got off to a great start immediately starting the morning of the kickoff breakfast.  We have met for lunch to discuss our approach to the mentoring program and to get to know each other better.  I think this is going to be an outstanding experience for us!”

Stephen: “The mentorship programme is well organized and thought goes into matching the mentors with the mentees so the mentee can best exploit the relationship. I have never had the experience, but I have heard that there have been - albeit rare - mentor/mentee mismaches in mentorship programmes.”

Ben: “I thought the kick off breakfast was very well run. Definitely refined and could tell it had been prepared for properly. It was good to speak to a few other people who had been mentees in the past and were back to continue to learn and grow in the mentee/mentor relationship.”



Can you increase workplace wellbeing while decreasing office footprint?
By Enara Yusufova, LEED AP BD+C, Marketing & Workplace Strategy, Waldner’s Business Environments


This is the question Waldner’s Business Environments was faced with at the start of 2016 in talks of rebranding our company and refreshing our three locations in Long Island, Manhattan, and Rye. As a family owned business of over 77 years specializing in office furniture, it was only natural that our office of 17 years on 215 Lex was screaming for a makeover. In the midst of suspenseful New York City lease negotiations and talks of relocating to another “prime” location, the Waldner’s team decided to bear down and do what we do best: re-imagine, re-configure, re-invigorate. 
In recent years the company underwent significant restructuring into a more collaborative and decentralized culture. Our existing high panels, dated color palette, among other attributes weren’t reflective of the way we worked anymore. In addition, as a response to client needs Waldner’s added a technology team and suite of integrated technology services that the existing design did not have the capacity to depict. Consequently, our principal Jay Waldner and our Design Team Leader Nicole Hall decided to design a new, open, synergistic office space that would also act as a showroom to our nearby city clients. 

Existing Conditions:
•Existing Space was 13,000 Sq Ft. 
•(39) Workstations, (5) Private Offices 
•(3) Conf. Room, (1) Material Library 

The existing design and furniture layout had definitely warn out its welcome. There were high panels which blocked the windows, an outdated beige color palette, and spaces that were not functional for collaboration.
The input of all company staff was integral as employee wellbeing was a priority to the success and future of the company and its team members. We conducted a survey with all employees to help determine the ratio of personal to collaborative space needed and to generate our workstation typicals.

Results of the Survey:
•Bright color palette 
•Low panels 
•Storage Ped with cushion for collaboration 
•Height Adjustable Tables to support each individual. Our design team generated a number of different typicals that helped analyze the needs of our employees. 

Our renovation downsized our existing square footage from 13,000 Sp Ft. to 9,000 Sq Ft. This created certain challenges that stressed the importance of creating a multi-functional space. The scope of our new office was to include large team spaces that could double as touchdown areas and meeting spaces for clients. Due to the advent of digital libraries and increased digital capabilities there was no longer a need for a large library or extensive storage cabinets. We also had to include a wide variety of products because our space was to double as a showroom. Integrating different product lines within the same space helped create a cohesive balance throughout. 

The finished design resulted in two conference rooms to accommodate large and small project group meetings, 40 workstations, 4 private offices, a scheduling system and the latest in high-end audio visual control systems allow for seamless shared experiences. Private offices no longer line the perimeter of the office and have now led way to permeate sunlight, to be enjoyed by everyone throughout the space. Natural elements add to the biophilic effect in the space with the use of a repurposed 100 year old barn as columns and live edge wood slab tables. A “townhall” space in the middle of the office has greatly increased opportunities for organic collaboration and flow of ideas resulting in small daily innovations and problem solving. We are able to experience a new “way of life” at work which accommodates personal work, teamwork, learning, and social interaction. A myriad of furniture and technology products in the space can be viewed by clients and is used by employees allowing us to offer honest and timely feedback to our community.



A New Age of Virtual Reality

By Theodora Hennessy, Marketing Associate, Lane Office


The ultimate display would, of course, be a room within which the computer can control the existence of matter. A chair displayed in such a room would be good enough to sit in, handcuffs displayed would be confining and a bullet displayed in such a room would be fatal. With appropriate programming, such a display could literally be the Wonderland into which Alice walked.” – Ivan Sutherland

Ivan Sutherland, who is often referred to as The Father of Virtual Reality, described it most similarly to the Virtual Reality we know today, with the idea being that one could change the world they know to be real, along with the one they do not. Virtual Reality has served many purposes, from flight simulation and military training to getting entranced in a video game.

Myron Krueger, another Virtual Reality visionary, was earning a Ph.D. in Computer Science during the early 1970s when he developed some of the technology that laid the groundwork for what we are seeing in 2016. He created the “glowflow,” which was a virtual environment controlled by a computer that had a response to those inside it. From there, he went on to develop Metaplay, which was the combination of “visuals, sounds, and responsive techniques into a single framework.” His work is groundbreaking for many reasons, most importantly that it makes Sutherland’s hopeful allusion to the “Wonderland into which Alice walked,” a reality.

Sutherland and Krueger are two of the most influential in the field but in the past few years, we have seen something that has ventured into new territory. At DIRTT, we see how mixed reality, a hybrid reality that combines augmented and virtual realities, changes interior design. With mixed reality, a virtual world is placed on top of the real world in order to create a singular experience. In 2014, we saw the release of ICEvr™ (virtual reality) at DIRTT Connext, which is just another picture of the ICE experience with its vivid visuals, real-time changes and instant pricing. In 2016, the release of ICEreality™, built upon ICEvr and can be considered the beginning of mixed reality at DIRTT. It allows clients to experience what the space will look like, while also keeping to their vision, both aesthetically and monetarily with a 3D design placed into a space that already exists. Barrie Loberg, VP, Software Development and co-founder of DIRTT is the inventor of ICE software. His take on ICEreality is that, ‘it’s not just participation. You can be productive.”

ICEreality is in research and development at the ICElabs and is always evolving, with new hardware and software equipment arriving frequently to test and play with. At 2016’s DIRTT Connext, R&D ICEreality was shown, a positive change in how construction is planned and the experience the customer gets before starting a project. With the new version of ICE released in summer of 2016, there is integration with virtual reality and support for the Oculus Rift headset. This is the start of something revolutionary in DIRTT’s approach to building. 


A New Mindfulness for Waste Reduction & Recycling
By Members of the Sustainability Committee
Nadine Cino of Tyga-Box Systems, Inc., Guy Cleveland of WB Engineering & Consulting, Amanda Dammarell of Patcraft Commercial Flooring, Kaneez Darbar of Exemplis, Heather Groff of Ware Malcomb, Alexis HornJohn Maiolo of Tandus-Centiva, Dan Maldonado of Skanska, Dmitriy MorozovThomas O’Halloran of Structure Tone, Inc., Drew Schechtman of BNY Mellon, Lisa Speltz of Angelo Gordon and Co., Enara Yusufova of Waldner's Business Environments, Inc. and Tracy Kelliher

This is the third in a six-part series resulting from the committee's spring round table.

Mindfulness, the state of active and open attention to the present moment, seems counterproductive to waste reduction/recycling.  Living in and enjoying our days, as they come, is the path to contentment, but applied to waste reduction and recycling, looking to the future is the only way we will save our planet.

The statistics are staggering.  Feliks Bezati, PhD., Environmental Sustainability Manager from Tarkett, a worldwide leader of innovative and sustainable flooring, provided a bleak picture of our world if we don’t immediately start making some drastic changes to reduce waste and recycle. 
In short, we are running out of resources.  As inhabitants in the U.S., China, and India continue to populate exponentially, we can look forward to needing three earths to maintain the necessary resources at our current rate of consumption. According to Bezati, we live in a linear economy, recycling only 10 percent of our waste.  In the U.S., we have a long-established habit of extracting, using, and disposing of our waste.  This will prove disastrous to our future.

Our mindfulness about waste reduction must shift from linear to circular, where we extract, use, and then recycle/reuse, if we hope to leave a fit world for future generations.  Individuals can and should adapt their environments to this mindset, and corporations must build in recycling/reuse in their manufacturing processes.
Additionally, “We need to change the culture from disposable products to products that are made to be recycled and reused safely utilizing renewable energy sources,” said Bezati.

NYC is responding to Bezati’s plea.  Mayor de Blasio invited hotels, arenas, food wholesalers and manufacturers, and other large waste-generating businesses to join the NYC Mayor’s Zero Waste Challenge (ZWC) - a voluntary program that challenged businesses to track their waste stream over four months.  From February 15, 2016, to June 15, 2016, the goal was to reach a minimum of 50 percent diversion of waste from landfills and incineration through methods such as donation, recycling, and composting.

Thirty-one companies rose to the challenge, many of which included E-waste (computers, printers, faxes, and batteries), which are historically some of the most difficult items to dispose of.  Building on the city’s ambitious goal of sending zero waste to landfill by 2030, these businesses were recognized by the Mayor’s Office as leaders in environmentally sustainable waste management. ZWC participants were also required to donate leftover edible food to local charities to help end hunger in NYC.

Sara Currie-Halpern, Senior Policy Advisor of the NYC Mayor’s Office of Long Term Planning and Sustainability, described two new laws, which will be enforced beginning January 2017.  The first is the new Commercial Recycling Law, requiring all recyclable materials to be recycled, and the second is the Commercial Organic Material Law, which requires all arenas with 15,000+ seating, hotels over 150 Rooms and restaurants in hotels, food manufacturers and wholesalers, to separate organic material (food) from other waste and compost it. This material is then sent to Long Island Compost or farms in New Jersey.

The Mayor's Office is also working with a not-for-profit company that finds homes for old office furniture, putting together donors with companies looking for furniture, thus keeping the old excess furniture from landfills.  Ms. Currie-Halpern is the contact for any company looking to find a home for their surplus or older furnishings.  You can reach her at:


It’s a Tug of War between ROI and Sustainability
By Members of the Sustainability Committee
Nadine Cino of Tyga-Box Systems, Inc., Guy Cleveland of WB Engineering & Consulting, Amanda Dammarell of Patcraft Commercial Flooring, Kaneez Darbar of Exemplis, Heather Groff of Ware Malcomb, Alexis HornJohn Maiolo of Tandus-Centiva, Dan Maldonado of Skanska, Dmitriy MorozovThomas O’Halloran of Structure Tone, Inc., Drew Schechtman of BNY Mellon, Lisa Speltz of Angelo Gordon and Co., Enara Yusufova of Waldner's Business Environments, Inc. and Tracy Kelliher

This is the second in a six-part series resulting from the committee's spring round table.

Top senior executives' titles tend to start with the letter C, for chief.  As a group, these executives comprise a C-suite. These are the brass whose lifeblood depends on staying abreast of the trends, and they keep a keen eye on real estate.  Today, we’re talking about LEED, whose trend status is waning. 

LEED, or Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, changed the way we think about how buildings and communities are planned, constructed, and maintained. Projects pursuing LEED certification earn points across several areas that address sustainability issues. Based on the number of points achieved, a project then receives one of four LEED rating levels: Certified, Silver, Gold and Platinum.

But while companies formerly embraced LEED, they are now pulling away from it as a necessary certification.  LEED had lessons to teach, and the CRE community learned those lessons, then took what they learned and are moving forward without the heretofore obligatory LEED stamp of approval.  LEED did an amazing job of getting the ball rolling on sustainability, but is it necessary for the next phase?

Current measures like creating healthy workplaces, resource use, and operations are driving the commercial real estate industry toward broader indexes like the Bloomberg Index, which draws on Bloomberg’s world-class data.  

As companies factor sustainability into their spending, they are increasingly including considerations for health and wellness because the fact is that ROI is higher when the primary goal is employee satisfaction.  Financial returns through loyalty, productivity, and attraction/retention are difficult to pass off as incidentals when bottom lines are significantly impacted. New, healthier work environments create new questions for real estate investors.  For instance, how many treadmill desks are required, and how much square footage is necessary to create a healthy food bar?

Seems that all the puzzle pieces are happily falling into place. Investors are shifting their thinking from bottom line to value added; the regulatory environment is increasing its coverage to include everything from energy efficiency to supply chain; and social equity is having a field day as companies buy goods and services from businesses in their neighborhoods. 

Meanwhile, the real estate industry grapples for metrics to substantiate the numbers for increased productivity and reduced absenteeism.  With LEED touching only one aspect, sustainability, the industry is moving toward GRESB, the leading data provider for environmental, social and governance (ESG) performance of real assets.  The new data from GRESB shows that real estate companies and funds are improving across all aspects of ESG performance and are putting greater focus on occupant health and well-being.

Have we reached the point where ROI actually trumps sustainability?  Every year, more than $22 trillion is spent on sustainability improvements, yet most companies are only willing to invest just enough to be competitive and to be deemed sustainable.
It’s clear that investors need accurate parameters for ROI versus sustainability, and the real estate industry can and should be the harbinger of education.  With real estate leading the charge, will climate change become the unifying force that incites and cements a culture change in this ongoing tug of war?


Why Opt for a High Performance Workplace?
By Members of the Sustainability Committee
Nadine Cino of Tyga-Box Systems, Inc., Guy Cleveland of WB Engineering & Consulting, Amanda Dammarell of Patcraft Commercial Flooring, Kaneez Darbar of Exemplis, Heather Groff of Ware Malcomb, Alexis Horn, John Maiolo of Tandus-Centiva, Dan Maldonado of Skanska, Dmitriy Morozov, Thomas O’Halloran of Structure Tone, Inc., Drew Schechtman of BNY Mellon, Lisa Speltz of Angelo Gordon and Co., Enara Yusufova of Waldner's Business Environments, Inc. and Tracy Kelliher

This is the first in a six-part series resulting from the committee's spring round table.

The groundswell for creating high performance workplaces has all the numbers solidly stacked on the plus side of the column. Where employers’ eyes once glazed over from costs associated with retrofitting old spaces and providing employees with more aesthetically-appealing and collaborative work environments, the rise in productivity has sealed the deal.

High performance workplaces are quantifiable.  Through employee surveys, which measure satisfaction, plus statistics on reduction in absenteeism and sick days, it’s more than clear that improvements to the work environment are worth the cost.  Employers are also finding that healthy, happy workplaces attract high-quality staff.

When we asked our roundtable participants to define a high performance workplace, they had no problem assembling the parameters.  Efficiency scored high, as did design that focuses on innovation, collaboration, and creativity, with natural light, fresh air, a fitness center, and an on-site cafeteria offering high quality, healthy food.  Everyone agreed that high performance workplaces ramp up employee satisfaction.  At GlaxoSmithKline’s new facility at the revitalized Navy Yard in Philadelphia, for example, some employees poised to retire actually reevaluated their exit plans because of the appealing new work environment.

Sure, there have been road blocks.  Landlords are notoriously, and understandably, reluctant to incur costs for tenants, and tenants resist a substantial investment in space they don’t own.  Even employees resist change because, hey, it’s change.  Multi-generational differences in work styles would seem to indicate that the millennials are winning.  Rather than shutting themselves away from the action, they have helped usher in a new era of activity and engagement.  The need for people to own and control is retreating, replaced by the desire to connect and share.  The millennial work mantra? Take down the walls and eliminate the cubicles.

In a perfect world, many companies would opt for a clean slate.  They’d prefer a new building designed to create an ideal workplace for productivity and satisfaction.  Of course, this isn’t a perfect world, but the good news is that there are many retrofits that can accomplish a high performance environment without exorbitant costs.  

Let’s start with the infrastructure.  Improving the heating/air conditioning (HVAC) climate is a way to bring the outside in, encouraging employees to reduce stress levels with deep, cleansing breaths of fresh air.

As the lungs expand, what better time to get the legs moving than by providing sit/stand desks?  Or, going a step further (no pun intended), employees can work and walk at the same time on treadmills with mini desks.  Other options include a fitness center (or at least, rebates for a gym), healthy snacks, and a nutritionist.

With a goal in mind, research begins.  Utilization studies, developing ROI templates, and benchmarking other high performance workplaces will provide the necessary background to muster the troops and move forward.

The key is buy-in, and as usual, that needs to start at the top.  From there, all stakeholders, from human resources through information technology and real estate must be gathered into the fold, with everyone keen on employee satisfaction.  As an executive from GlaxoSmithKline summed it up, “Happy, smiling employees equal great results.”

Member of NYC Chapter John Vasquez Named CoreNet Global Corporate Real Estate Exec of the Year

Congrats to the CoreNet Global 2016 Corporate Real Estate Executive of the Year John Vasquez froour NYC Chapter. The CoreNet Global North American Summit took place October 16-19, 2016 at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia.


John M. Vazquez (pictured at right) is the SVP of Global Real Estate at Verizon. John’s work at Verizon has been described as truly transformational for the Global Real Estate organization, the people at Verizon, the firm and the real estate industry. John transformed the workplace for our employees while monetizing and optimizing the Verizon portfolio (over 110M SF with over 6,000 buildings). The employee experience created a frictionless workplace that supports productivity and attracts talent. This cultural change for the employees and executive team has elevated our stature as a forward thinking change agent with the employees and a good corporate citizen with the C- suite. John has also received recognition in the Industry as a thought leader with partners JLL, Gensler, C & W, CoreNet Global, CEB. 



CoreNet NYC's Strategy & Portfolio Planning Committee Hosts Two-Part Program, "Autumn in New York"

CoreNet Global New York City Chapter (CoreNet NYC)’s Strategy & Portfolio Planning (SPP) Committee is pleased to announce that it kicked off Autumn in New York with a dynamic two-part program. Part one, “FASB: It’s Here; What Now?” took place on September 14, 2016 and part two, “GE’s Relocation: What, Why, How?” took place on September 15, 2016 at The Rockerfeller Group in New York City. 

Program 1, FASB: IT’S HERE; WHAT NOW? was moderated by SPP’s Greg Kraut of Avison Young, with an esteemed panel comprised of Marc Betesh, KBA Lease Services; Erik Lange, KPMG; Christopher McKenna, JPMorgan Chase; Richard Podos, Lance Capital; Alan Scott, Deutsche Bank.  

In discussing how the new Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) standards are affecting their respective real estate decisions, the panel opined that the new regulations will result in an increased need for lease administration services as tens of thousands of managerial contracts may now be brought into scope due to their "embedded leases,” and subsequently added to the balance sheet. All agreed that in the short term the transition will be onerous, but once completed the new FASB financial reporting offers benefits for everyone. Costs that were once considered expenses now have the option of being amortized, or alternatively, operating costs (like cleaning and maintenance) that were once part of the rent – can be separated, thus reducing one’s rent obligation and, in turn, the liabilities on the company balance sheet. The new standards can also benefit a single tenant at lease renewal time. With the lease now appearing as a liability on the balance sheet, an existing tenant has more leverage to negotiate a new contract with the landlord. Ultimately, financial positions will now be much more transparent, and companies will now have much more control over their assets. 

As evidenced by Michael A. Bell’s excellent article, Preparing for FASB’s New Lease Accounting Standard – Effective Early 2019, in CoreNet New York’s fall newsletter, FASB is an important and timely topic.  
SPP plans additional FASB workshops in the coming months. 

Program 2, GE’S RELOCATION, featured Harri Singh, Global Operations – Properties, Shared Services Leader for General Electric, sharing insights into General Electric’s motivation to move its headquarters from suburban Connecticut to downtown Boston.   

In contrast to many corporations, GE’s decision was primarily motivated not by potential real estate cost savings or tax incentives, but by a desire to follow the talent. As General Electric re-invents itself as a world class developer of cloud technology and related services, Boston represents the physical manifestation of what the 124-year-old company is trying to accomplish.  With 250,000 students engaged in higher learning in the Boston area, the city is matched only by London as a knowledge center and a magnet for venture capitalists.

New York was off the table, as Mr. Singh allowed as how with the sale of GE Capital, the company is no longer financially focused. And Silicon Valley was not considered for two reasons: 1) the Pacific Time Zone makes doing business with the Middle East difficult and 2) it doesn’t have enough people with digital cloud expertise (for which only Seattle and Israel rival Boston). Additionally, Mr. Singh shared that it was important for GE to be a big talent draw and an important part of the local economy. This occasioned GE to perform labor analytics to determine the longevity of the labor force over time.  Leaving Six Sigma at the turn of the century, the company now engages in Fast Fail: try it out; analyze the outcome and move on. As such, GE is looking for big thinkers and Boston has plenty of them. And to further evidence its focus on talent, GE has just hired an Employee Experience executive. 

SPP’s “double header” was planned to offer CoreNet members from the Tri-State area who might not attend a single event, a chance to plan business in the city around the back to back programs on two successive days. With two well-attended programs and a meet up, the strategy was deemed successful. 



CoreNet NYC Hosts Discussion Panel, "Disruption of the CBD -- Convergence of New Markets, Economies and the Quest for Talent"

CoreNet Global New York City Chapter (CoreNet NYC) is pleased to announce that it hosted “Disruption of the CBD – The Convergence of New Markets, Economies and the Quest for Talent” on Thursday, September 29, 2016 at the Hyatt Grand Hotel in New York City. 

  • Maxx Gross, Editor-in-Chief at The Commercial Observer, moderated a panel of leading executives, including: 
  • Sean Black, Executive Vice President of WeWork
  • Donna Clark, Senior Vice President of Real Estate at Time Inc.
  • Michael Ippolito, Chairman of Global Corporate Services at Newmark Grubb Knight Frank 

During this program, panelists examined how not since the 1970s’ wave of suburbanization has there been a significant shift in the landscape of job location in the New York region until now. “Technology has increased work/life balance,” said Ippolito. “At the same time, many professionals are spending more time at work, so they want to get home quicker and living in the city allows them to do that,” he continued.

Over the last five years, there has been a change led not by state incentive deals, but by demographics, life choices and new types of entrepreneurship. “Corporations, like Time Inc., are chasing after young talent, and young people are choosing to live in urban areas,” said Clark. 

This shift is creating new markets across our region, outside traditional corridors.  “Urban verses suburban is over and urban won,” said Gross. “Change management is a large factor in moving to emerging markets,” he continued.

Competitive companies must consider this shift when developing new office space. “When WeWork looks for potential space, we look for high IQ populated cities that value community. Community creates innovation and excitement, which creates connections,” said Black.

Not only is location important, but work environment and design have shifted gears as well. “When talking about competition of talent, attractive amenities are important,” said Gross. “Rooftop space, event space, health clubs and food service are just a few examples factored into decision making.”  

The panel was available to answer questions from the audience at the conclusion of the discussion. One guest asked, “What is going to happen to the suburban market?” Ippolito explained it as cyclical, suggesting demand will come back. Black continued, “There are lots of opportunities for change in the suburbs.” 


(From left to right) Sean Black, Executive Vice President, WeWork; Donna Clark, Senior Vice President of Real Estate, Time Inc.; Michael Ippolito, Chairman of Global Corporate Services, Newmark Grubb Knight Frank; Max Gross, Editor-in-Chief, The Commercial Observer; Jody Brown, Senior Director of Global Sourcing for Real Estate & General Services, Thomson Reuters, Programs Chair of the NYC Chapter of CoreNet Global


CoreNet NYC Women's Committee Heads Up Mentorship Program

CoreNet NYC Women’s Committee heads up a Mentorship program - chaired by Ellen Herman (JLL), Pat Hildebrant (Jacob Feinberg Katz & Michaeli Consulting Group, LLC) and Lisa Speltz (Angelo, Gordon & Co.) - to partner young professionals in corporate real estate with seasoned senior corporate real estate leaders. The program embodies the commitment of the CoreNet New York City chapter to assist corporate real estate professionals in their personal growth and professional development. By partnering mentees with mentors, professionals at all stages can gain career insight, new perspectives about the industry, and further expand their professional network.

Those interested in participating submitted a simple application this past August to outline their work history, educational background, special skills and interests, which enabled the Mentoring Committee to match a mentor’s background with a mentee’s career aspirations so that the partnership is as relevant and beneficial as possible. The program recently kicked off its 4th year with an Orientation Session on September 13th. Mentees and mentors are asked to meet face to face on a monthly basis; an informal optional monthly gathering is also available to all present and past participants to provide an opportunity for networking and info-sharing. Two additional group sessions – one in the fall and one in the spring – will be scheduled for all participants to come together to discuss their experience and track progress.

Stay tuned for upcoming posts featuring interviews with two pairs of mentors-mentees as they progress from initial expectations and hopes at the start of the program to final reflections after the closing “Graduation” ceremony in May 2017!


Get Involved!

There is no better way to maximize your CoreNet membership than by being part of a committee. The CoreNet NYC Annual Dinner Committee is currently looking for a volunteer to spearhead our lighting, A/V and entertainment efforts. Critical to the overall success of the Annual Dinner Event is the ensuring that these things are seamlessly coordinated. We are looking for a team member that has experience in lighting design or audio visual equipment/design.
Responsibilities include:
·        Soliciting proposals from lighting & AV vendors (if required)

·        Reviewing proposals to ensure proper equipment is provided for our requirements/needs

·        Coordination with Venue, Décor & Logistics sub-committee on location of AV & Lighting equipment

·        On-Site coordination with vendors to ensure proper installation & location on day of event

·         Must be a CoreNet NYC member in good standing

·         Ability to attend monthly meetings & contribute a minimum of 3-4 hours a month

·         Must be able to work in a group/team environment

·         Must have excellent communication skills

If you would like to be a part of the team, please contact Samantha Tursi at

CoreNet NYC's Technology Community Hosts Discussion Panel, "Working in the Gray Space"

CoreNet Global's New York City Chapter was pleased to host “Working in the Gray Space” on Wednesday, August 3, 2016 at the social café of Brookfield Place in New York City. 

Ross Cole, Principal & Founder at BAM Architecture Studio, moderated a panel of leading executives, including: 
Bob Balder, Executive Director, Cornell University’s College of Architecture, Art & Planning
Gonzalo V. Cruz, ASLA Principal, Landscape Architecture & Urban Design Studio Leader
Eric Stride, Vice President, Emerging Technologies at Root9B 

During this program, panelists examined how many of us spend a portion of each work week outside the traditional confines of “the office.” Gray space is defined as those places where people get work done when they’re not “at work.”

While New York City is at the forefront of Gray Space, Cole asked the panel about the implications it may have on real estate strategy, company security and logistics, as well as where it may be taking us tomorrow. 

Stride discussed how it is important to be cautious when using free WiFi. “Your data may not be safe,” he said. He explained how it is important to consider the confidentiality of information you are working on when using unsecured hot spots or public internet connections.

Cruz explained the way Gray Space has blended the black and white of leaving work at work. While people often take their work to parks to enjoy the outdoors while being productive, it is forgotten that parks were originally for relaxation. “Madison Square Park will be installing charging stations in the near future,” Cruz said. Working in the Gray Space is wide spread and we are adapting.




An Interview with Corgan Senior Associate Virginia Castillo, IIDA


Q. What is one thing about yourself that is unknown to most?
A. Most people don’t know this, but my co-workers are finding it out now. I can be intense when it comes to cleanliness at home and work. We recently expanded and renovated our Corgan NYC office.  As you can imagine, it has been anything but neat and tidy as we continue with business as usual.  As the senior designer and project manager for the space, I have been obsessed with keeping things in order and therefore, driving my co-workers crazy!
Q. What is the biggest challenge you’ve overcome?
A. I’ve had various hurdles in my career, but the biggest challenge that I routinely deal with is maintaining a professional life with all the expectations and demands that come with it - while balancing a hectic home where my husband and I are raising two young boys. This means soccer games, school events and so on.  I’m very fortunate for the support at home and support of my colleagues, as Corgan works with me by allowing a flexible schedule, enabling me to juggle it all.  
Q. “Disruptive Innovation” is CoreNet Global’s theme for 2016. What does Disruptive Innovation mean to you?
A. I greatly respect innovative thinkers. Disruptive Innovation, to me, is literally displacing or replacing established market leaders and their alliances. To be successful, businesses are going to have to embrace new technology and find new markets and customers. Examples of some disruptive innovators that come to mind are Amazon and Uber. Companies need to stay nimble to stay successful.
Q. What do see 5 years down the road for the commercial real estate industry in New York? 
A. Flexibility in work styles and home-like settings is becoming the trend to collaborate.  More companies will be offering employees the flexibility of working somewhere other than their desks. Open collaboration areas are necessary but can be distracting.  Clients will continue to look for more intimate, quiet and unique “focus areas” that allow for “heads down” work. 


"Working in the Gray Space," A Panel Discussion

Join CoreNet's Technology Community for "Working in the Gray Space," a panel discussion, on August 3, 2016 from 6:00-8:00 p.m. Speakers are Bob Balder, Executive Director of Cornell University's College of Architecture, Art and Planning; Gonzalo V. Cruz, ASLA Principal of Landscape Architecture & Urban Design Studio Leader; and Eric Stride, Vice President of Emerging Technologies at root9B. Registration is now open at 


Did You Know that 1 Billion Gallons of Drinking Water are Delivered to NYC Every Day by the New York City Water Supply System?

To learn more about New York's water, join CoreNet's Sustainability Community Wednesday, July 20 from 5:30-7:30 p.m. at 4 Times Square for a panel discussion with CoreNet's Sustainability Committee about the complex linkages between sustainability and water. Speakers are Christina Copeland, manager of disclosure services at Carbon Disclosure Project; Diana Glassman, CEO at Integration Strategy, Inc; and Taylor McDonald, Environmental Specialist at Tandus Centiva. Register now at 


CoreNet NYC Raises $35,000 for ACE Mentor Program at 2016 Golf Outing

CoreNet Global New York City Chapter (CoreNet NYC) is pleased to announce that it hosted its annual CoreNet NYC Golf Outing on Monday, July 11, 2016. The event was held at two courses—Century Country Club and Old Oaks Country Club in Purchase, New York. A portion of the proceeds benefited ACE Mentor Program of America.


Advancing Opportunities for Students in the Integrated Construction Industry

The outing brought together prominent corporate real estate professionals to raise funds for the ACE Mentor Program for the second year in a row. The program helps mentor high school students and inspires them to pursue careers in architecture, construction and engineering by pairing them with professionals in those fields. CoreNet NYC has a strong relationship with the ACE Mentor Program, with many of CoreNet NYC’s members serving as jurors for the program. The outing generated robust support and raised more than $35,000 to support ACE Mentor Program’s mission.


About ACE Mentor Program of America

The ACE Mentor Program is the fastest-growing high school mentoring program focusing on careers in the integrated construction industry. It was founded by the principals of leading design and construction firms, to introduce high school students to career opportunities in the industry. The mission of the organization is to engage, excite and enlighten high school students to pursue careers in the design/build construction industry through mentoring, and to support their continued advancement in the industry through scholarships and grants. ACE especially focuses on reaching students who otherwise may not become aware of the challenges and rewards of a career in the design and construction industry. For additional information or to find an ACE Mentor Program in your area please visit


Social Media Contest Winners Announced

Congratulations to the winners of our Golf Outing social media contest, Ryan Eisner from Eagle Transfer Corp. and Sadaf Sattarzadeh from 52XConsulting. We would like to thank Sadaf, Ryan and all of the other volunteers for their help in making our Annual Golf Outing a success! Please contact to claim your prize. 


CoreNet NYC to Host Panel Discussion: "Why You Should Be Thinking About Water" on July 20, 2016

CoreNet NYC is pleased to announce that its Sustainability Community will host a panel discussion on the complex linkages between sustainability and water on July 20, 2016 at 4 Times Square from 5:30 p.m.-7:30 p.m.

CoreNet NYC’s Sustainability Community will be joined by the panel’s speakers, Christina Copeland, Manager of Disclosure Services at Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP); Diana Glassman, CEO at Integration Strategy, Inc.; and Taylor McDonald, Environmental Specialist at Tandus Centiva.

Along with temperatures, changes in water patterns are often a result of, and a means of gauging, climate change. From water scarcity to rising water levels, companies are increasingly more vulnerable to disruptions in their operations, supply chains and logistics. Its inextricable connection with energy further escalates water’s business impact. Managing water-related risks – and identifying opportunities – is increasingly important to CEOs and sustainability and real estate professionals.

To register for the event, visit or contact CoreNet Global New York City Chapter at 212.867.7660 or


Thank You to All Who Came to Yesterday's Annual Golf Outing

CoreNet Global NYC would like to thank all members and guests who came to yesterday's Annual Golf Outing at Century and Old Oaks Country Clubs in Purchase, New York. We had a great time in support of our charitable partner, the ACE Mentor Program.



Add Us on Snapchat

For live updates of Monday's Annual Golf Outing, add us on Snapchat!


Why You Should Be Thinking About Water - A Panel Discussion

Join CoreNet's Sustainability Community Wednesday, July 20 from 5:30-7:30 p.m. at 4 Times Square for a panel discussion with CoreNet's Sustainability Community about the complex linkages between sustainability and water. Speakers are Christina Copeland, manager of disclosure services at Carbon Disclosure Project; Diana Glassman, CEO at Integration Strategy, Inc; and Taylor McDonald, Environmental Specialist at Tandus Centiva. Register now at . 



CoreNet NYC Congratulates Annual Award Winners


CoreNet NYC gathered for its annual meeting Tuesday, June 28th, awarding members in the categories of Commercial Interiors Projects of the Year, Service Provider of the Year and CRE of the Year. Congratulations to all of our nominees and a special congratulations to our winners. Without further ado...

2016 CoreNet NYC Commercial Interiors Project of the Year (Under 150,000 RSF)

Teach for America
Team/ Architecture Interior Design: HOK
Size/ 132,000 RSF
25 Broadway, New York, NY 10004



Team/ Architecture Interior Design: Ted Moudis Associates
Size/ 70,000 RSF
90 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10011

The Marshall WACE Project
Team/ Architecture Interior Design: Ted Moudis Associates
Size/ 11,000 RSF
350 Park Avenue, New York, NY 10022


2016 CoreNet NYC Commercial Interiors Project of the Year (Over 150,000 RSF)

Time Inc.

Team/ Architecture Interior Design: STUDIOS Architecture
Size/ 700,000 RSF
225 Liberty Street, New York, NY 10281


Team/ Architecture Interior Design: Cannon Design
Size/ 170,000 RSF
One North End Avenue, New York, NY 10282

Condé Nast
Team/ Architecture Interior Design: Gensler
Size/ 1,300,000 RSF
One World Center, New York, NY 10007


2016 Service Provider of the Year

Dale Schlather, Vice Chairman, Cushman & Wakefield
Dale joined Cushman Realty Corporation in 1986 as National Director of Financial Services based in Los Angeles. In 1991, Mr. Schlather founded the San Diego office of Cushman Realty where he was a Senior Broker for three years. In 1994, Mr. Schlather relocated to the New York City office of Cushman Realty where he was Senior Managing Director. In 2001, following the merger of Cushman Realty  with Cushman & Wakefield, Mr. Schlather joined the midtown office of Cushman & Wakefield as Senior Director. In 2012 Mr. Schlather was promoted to Vice Chairman and was the Top Producing Broker for Cushman & Wakefield. In 2015 he was the number two producer for Cushman & Wakefield and the top producer in NYC. During his 30 year career at Cushman & Wakefield, Mr. Schlather has been responsible for the financial structuring, analysis and negotiation of major corporate and institutional relocations involving the assessment of current leasehold interests and the feasibility of lease/equity transactions, development opportunities and joint venture partnerships. He has played an integral role in the structuring, analysis, and implementation of over 30 million square feet of lease transactions in over thirty five cities across the United States and internationally, as a tenant representation broker.


Greg Burke, President, Lane Office Furniture

Todd DeGarmo, CEO, STUDIOS Architecture

Peter Miscovich, Senior Management Consultant, JLL


2016 Corporate Real Estate Executive of the Year

John Vazquez, SVP, Global Real Estate, Verizon
John M. Vazquez, is the SVP, Global Real Estate at Verizon. John’s work at Verizon has been described as truly transformational for the Global Real Estate organization, the people at Verizon, the firm and the real estate industry. John transformed the workplace for our employees while monetizing and optimizing the Verizon portfolio (over 110M SF with over 6,000 buildings). The employee experience created a frictionless workplace that supports productivity and attracts talent. This cultural change for the employees and executive team has elevated our stature as a forward thinking change agent with the employees and a good corporate citizen with the C- suite. John has also received recognition in the Industry as a thought leader with partners JLL, Gensler, C & W, CoreNet Global, CEB.

Phil Bottega, A.I.A., Head of CRE or the Americas

Donna Clark, SVP of Real Estate, Time Inc.

Jeff Elie, VP of Real Estate, Kaplan


Young Leaders Committee Attends Mock Interview Event


CoreNet NYC's Young Leaders Committee Celebrated a successful Mock Interview event on Friday at the Grace Institute. 


Technology Is Changing the Dynamics of How We Work 

By Saeid Garebaglow, RA, MCR, vice president of Corporate Real Estate for Faithful+Gould

(As published in The LEADER)

Today’s worker is more mobile and more connected than ever before, which means that businesses can operate anywhere. Especially in mature urban centers, the pushback against increasing real estate leasing and ownership costs is escalating.

While telecommuting may not be a viable option for all companies, or even all employees within a company, many organizations have utilized remote work models with great success. This is reducing the amount of office space needed to accommodate employees, and it is changing the dynamics of what constitutes an ideal—read expensive—location.

The distributed work model itself is not new. Health insurer Aetna has used remote work as an employee retention tool for more than 20 years, and more than 31 percent of the company’s employees telework. Through telecommuting, the company has reduced its office space by more than two million square feet, resulting in an approximate annual savings of $78 million. The company also closed and demolished its 1.3-million-square-foot building in Middletown, Connecticut, which was praised as the 'office park of the future' when it was built in the 1980s.

So why all the buzz now? These are just a few technology-focused factors:

Innovations in cloud-based information storage security

Improved functionality of enterprise software such as Microsoft SharePoint and OneDrive

Rising reliability of communications applications such as Skype and GoToMeeting

Greater coverage and relative decreases in the costs of wifi, cellular and high-speed internet access

Online marketplaces such as Behance, Fiverr, Upwork and hundreds of others facilitating connections between workers and employers around the world

Working in concert with one another, the convergence of these factors and the ever-present pressure for companies to streamline costs, is making remote work viable for a wider array of knowledge workers than ever before. According to, 2014 saw a 26 percent increase in remote job postings over 2013. This directly translates to smaller footprints of traditional office space that companies need to lease, purchase, or build.

While companies like Aetna have made telecommuting a part of the company culture, other companies, like Yahoo! have shifted away from home-based work, bringing their employees back together. In 2013, when the company announced it would be ending work-at-home opportunities, then head of Human Resources Jackie Reses said, "Some of the best decisions and insights come from hallway and cafeteria discussions, meeting new people, and impromptu team meetings." 

Therefore, companies are looking to innovative, flexible, and adaptable office designs to help inspire and facilitate these impromptu team meetings. Instead of floors full of cubicles, which often sit empty while meeting spaces are overbooked, shared workspaces, meeting spaces, social areas abound—often enabled with video conferencing, smartboards and other virtual collaboration technologies. 

When GlaxoSmithKline relocated from its former location in a leased office space in downtown Philadelphia to the historic Navy Yard, the company used the principles of communities to create an open, vibrant and collaborative work experience. As a result, it was able to relocate the entire population of 1,300 employees from their former location in downtown Philadelphia while reducing their office space by 600,000 square feet. While the services provided have had numerous benefits for GlaxoSmithKline’s bottom line, the move also spiked the percentage of unleased space in the Philadelphia urban core. 

Collaborative workplace organizations, such as WeWork and Workspring, are also knocking down the literal and figurative “walls” and changing commercial real estate dynamics. These shared office spaces provide various options for companies that either lack the capital or want to divest themselves of the real estate, furniture, services, etc. that were previously non-negotiable. These shared spaces are ideal for hosting meetings, as well as for both on-demand and long-term space for satellite employees, mobile workers and independent professionals.

In addition to reducing the amount of office space a company needs, and re-imagining how that space is used, technology is also bringing down barriers between potential tenants and real estate owners. Developments in cloud computing combined with mobile and social media are resulting in cost-effective and real-time property information, which means many leasing activities are happening online.

As technology continues to develop and these trends gain more traction in the market, I foresee the following developments:

In the most mature real estate markets, such as New York or London, rents may have peaked. Landlords are already reducing rates to attract tenants to Midtown Manhattan, for instance, in reaction to migrations prompted by untenable real estate costs.

Co-location and space sharing will increase for smaller companies, and shared services across companies could become the norm.

“Location, location, location” will remain a key factor for several sectors that rely on talent, transportation, and ease of access to other companies. Businesses with distributed real estate models will reduce their assets to token sales office presences in the metropolitan areas.

Because technology is ever-changing, the challenge for traditional commercial office environments - to keep pace with cabling, power, and other infrastructure requirements - will continue.

With further consolidation of real estate data on the web and the rise of smart buildings, the role of broker will change to advisor. More and more owners will embrace online services for engaging tenants, sidestepping brokerage fees - similar to the way Airbnb is transforming the hospitality market. This only stands to increase transparency and serve the tenant’s interests, both by exposing them to a wider array of properties and by making it easier to cost-compare.

Social amenities of urban center will continue to draw young talent willing to sacrifice living space - even opting for dormitory-style apartment sharing. The live/work space in the Brooklyn Navy Yards is just one example. As millennials establish families or desire more space, less congestion, and different community features, retreat to suburban and exurban homes will not limit professional options as greatly as in the past - I predict that companies that telework will outpace those who are reining it in.

The work-life divide has been blurred for at least a generation. Ease of communication and access has distorted what were once 'normal business hours' to the point that employers are recognizing the counterintuitively negative effect on productivity. In response, forward-thinking companies are instituting 'work free' hours and mandating that employees switch off work devices at home. Once the “Work-Life Merger” cultural phenomenon finds its equilibrium, the need for separate social spaces vs. office spaces will increase.


25 NYC Facts About NYC Water

By Carlie Hozza, Innovant & Sonya Verny, Serraview

1. One billion gallons of drinking water are delivered to NYC every day by the New York City Water Supply System.

2. 110 million additional gallons are delivered each day to one million people living in Westchester, Putnam, Ulster and Orange Counties.

3. NYC's surface water comes from a network of 19 reservoirs and three "controlled" lakes in a nearly 2,000 square-mile watershed, about the same size as Delaware.

4. The NYC Water Supply System is made up of three individual water supplies: the Catskill/Delaware supply, the Croton supply and a groundwater supply system in southeastern Queens.

5. The Department of Environmental Protection disinfects its water with chlorine and ultraviolet (UV) light.

6. DEP also treats the water with food grade phosphoric acid and sodium hydroxide.

7. Phosphoric acid is added to create a protective film on pipes that reduces the release of metals, such as lead, from household plumbing.

8. Sodium hydroxide is added to raise the pH and reduce corrosively, which also leads to a reduction in potential exposure to lead.

9. DEP has been treating its water with fluoride since 1966, for "consumer dental health protection." On Feb. 14, 2012, after receiving authorization from the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, DEP reduced the target dosage.

10. Water demand is down 30% since the 1990s, despite population growth.

11. The average single-family household in NYC uses approximately 80,000 gallons of water each year.

12. Some living organisms can be found in the NYC water supply, including copepods, a crustacean that's a distant relative of the lobster.

13. Researchers have compared sea level and storm surge heights from 850 to 1800, before significant human influences on the climate, to the period from 1970 to 2005. The average flood height increased by about 4 feet in New York between the two time periods and with continued warming, larger and more extreme storms along with even higher sea level is likely to cause more frequent and intense flooding.

14. Over 27 billion gallons of raw sewage and untreated storm water flow into New York Harbor annually.

15. 92% of New York City water access points sampled by community scientists failed to meet EPA criteria for safe swimming in 2014.

16. New York City is home to the largest engineered water system in the nation. 

17. New York has 30,000 miles of aging sewer and water treatment systems that will require significant investment in repairs and upgrades during the next fifteen years.

18. NYC DEP in Numbers:

  • Approximately 7,000 miles of water mains, tunnels and aqueducts bring water to homes and businesses throughout the five boroughs.
  • 7,500 miles of sewer lines 
  • Nearly 6,000 DEP employees in NYC and upstate NY
  • 96 pump stations 
  • 14 in-city treatment plants

19. DEP has a robust capital program, with a planned $14 billion in investments over the next 10 years that will create up to 3,000 construction-related jobs per year. 

20. Is NYC drinking water safe? Lead is the most common danger in NYC drinking water due to aging building pipes.  If you live in an old building that doesn’t have updated plumbing, let the water run for 30 seconds before using it. 

21. Know your terms: 

Combined Sewer Areas- Sanitary and industrial wastewater, rainwater and street runoff are collected in the same sewers.  The water then travels to the City’s treatment plants for cleaning.  60% of the City’s sewers are combined. 

Combined Sewer Overflow (CSO)- During heavy rain and snow storms, combined sewers receive higher than normal flows. Treatment plants are unable to handle flows that are more than twice design capacity and when this occurs, a mix of excess stormwater and untreated wastewater discharges directly into the City’s waterways at certain outfalls. 

Separate Sewer Areas- Sanitary waste and stormwater runoff are channeled in separate sewer systems: sanitary waste is carried to wastewater treatment plants while stormwater is channeled directly to local streams, rivers, and bays.

Unsewered Areas- Parks and wetlands where water is absorbed into the ground or channeled into waterways. 

Bioswales- Type of green infrastructure that DEP builds on City-owned sidewalks. They are designed to collect stormwater runoff that flows down city blocks when it’s raining. 

22. The NYC DEP has a free rain barrel program where 60-gallon barrels are distributed to property owners to lessen the impact of stormwater that causes Combined Sewer Overflow.  Owner’s position the barrels under their downspout to capture and store the water that falls on the rooftop. The water collected can be used to water lawns and gardens, or for other non-potable purposes.

23. There is a $1.5 billion initiative to ensure clean, reliable, and safe drinking water is available for New Yorkers for decades to come. As part of this initiative, DEP has begun a project to repair leaks in the Delaware Aqueduct that supplies roughly half of the city’s daily drinking water. In order to complete these repairs to the Aqueduct, the tunnel must be temporarily shut down in 2022. Ahead of the planned shutdown, DEP aims to reduce citywide water consumption by five percent.

24. Research and Development- Beginning in 2010, more than 30 green infrastructure source controls have been constructed and monitored as part of a green infrastructure pilot program.

25. Scientists found that maximum water levels in New York harbor during major storms have increased by nearly 2.5 feet since the mid-1800s. This rise in storm tide is in addition to the rise in local sea level of nearly 1.5 feet that has occurred since the mid-19th century, due in part to rising sea levels around the globe. The newfound rise in storm tides means that New York is at risk of more frequent and substantial flooding than was expected from sea-level rise alone.


An Interview with Bob Salvatelli, Director of Sustainable Water

Q. Each day an estimated 365 billion gallons of drinking water are used for non-potable purposes in the United States. Some of these uses include: flushing toilets, irrigation and landscaping, steam and power plants and cooling towers for air conditioning needs.  What is the best advice you would give to a building owner to prevent the use of their potable water source for these needs?

A. We started our business on the premise that potable water is not needed to flush toilets, for irrigation, or in a cooling tower.  Replacing potable water with reclaimed water from sources like storm water or better yet, sewer or black water will protect the valuable resource of potable or drinking water.  As much as 40% of a total building or campus footprint can be identified as non potable demand and can systematically be replaced with reclaimed water.  Building-based and campus-wide solutions are now available and can be retrofitted into existing buildings or incorporated as part of a new building’s original design.  Studying the water needs early in the design phase is preferred so that the plan can include dual piping for toilet flushing and a comprehensive irrigation strategy.  The decision to use water-based heat and cooling is also more environmentally friendly.

Q. What are the requirements for adding a non-potable water source to an existing commercial building? What risks and investments are involved? What are some of the immediate and long term benefits? 

A. Federal and State guidelines for use of reclaimed water are relatively straightforward. The standards for reclaiming water are clearly defined in the Water Reclamation and Reuse Standards published in September 1997.  It is important to emphasize that the treatment of reclaimed water falls just short of the treatment to create potable water.  Reclaimed water for non-human consumption and is clearly safe for utility applications like toilet flushing, irrigation, and cooling towers or steam boilers. A thoughtful engineering plan and study of building usage is the best place to start, since water projects have a longer return on investment (ROI).  Current utility rates and the volume of water/sewer are factored into the ROI modeling exercise. However performance contracting, allowing third parties to Design and Build, Own, and Operate and Maintain (DABOOM), is a creative way to solve the longer investment scenario. Typical construction improvements look for an ROI in the 3-5 year range based on size and scope of the project.  Water tends to be two times that and is usually value engineered out.  This trend cannot continue because it has proven to cost owners more in the long run. Our firm is betting on a change to this trend because our current infrastructure is stressed due to age and deferred maintenance. Water and sewer rates are on the rise across the country; the national average is 9% compounded annually.  The ability to hedge those rates has been a large focus on the energy side of the ledger, but now owners see that their water budgets are rising more rapidly than other utilities.  Retrofitting buildings after the fact with a dual pipe for flushing is often impractical.  Understanding that the addition of this purple pipe at time of construction is relatively inexpensive and typically adds only 10- 15% to the piping budget. This second source of water will be discounted and will enable savings over time.  Adding to the resiliency of the building by having a second source of water in the event of an outage, you have a thoughtfully planned building to operate.  Cities like San Francisco have made this part of their new building requirement over 250,000 SF and are leading the country in reclamation innovation.

Q. What are practical processes of treating and filtering water to make it potable? What forms of sustainable energy can be used in the processes? 
A. I think the concept of toilet to tap is still in the distant horizon.  The “ick” factor is very prevalent.  Even strategies around desalination of sea water are not perfected yet, so I believe that trying to displace potable water with reclaimed or utility water is a far better option. The County of San Diego is working with a project developer to build a large scale (50 MDG) desalination plant in Carlsbad, CA. The project cost is roughly $1.2 billion and is only going to provide 7% of county’s water supply.  It has a very large energy footprint but is an attempt to hedge against future drought and a growing population.  Coincidentally, the City of San Diego is also trying a wastewater to tap strategy for essentially the same reasons.  This is fairly small in scale to date but is clearly a sign of things to come, as supply is not keeping up with demand.
For our project at Emory University in Atlanta, we have been successful in reducing their potable water consumption by 40%, leaving more drinking water for the surrounding community.  We have also reduced their discharge to the municipal plant by the same percentage. This also lowers energy usage; 13% of the energy produced in the USA is dedicated to the movement and treatment of water. The concept of decentralized treatment and reuse will clearly preserve the precious resource of drinking water.  It gets even more attractive when performance contracting is the delivery vehicle, because the client can realize savings on day one with zero capital outlay.  Depending on volume and rates, millions of dollars can be saved over the life of the contract.
Q. We have alternative fuels to provide and create usable energy, but there is no alternative for potable water.  How can we prevent a critical shortage of potable water?

A. Conservation is the easy answer, but that will just not get us to where we need to be.  Aggressive strategies need to be explored to find a way to save us from ourselves.  Our firm is part of recent initiative from the White House (see below) to solve this pending crisis.  Similar to how the solar plan for the US was established to create a way to find renewable energies, this plan is to get the more innovative firms together with some of the brightest scientists in this country to attack the issue of preserving potable water.  I often hear speculation that the next major war will not be fought over oil but over water.  Water security, and the need for water to run a building, is not nearly as dire as the fundamental survival need for drinking water to stay hydrated. Nevertheless, building owners must begin to recognize the risk associated with outages to critical heating and cooling operations. No one worries about water until the well runs dry.

Working Together to Build a Sustainable Water Future
Water challenges are facing communities and regions across the United States, impacting millions of lives and costing billions of dollars in damages. These challenges are particularly problematic in predominantly poor, minority, or rural communities, where water inequality can go hand-in-hand with socioeconomic inequality. Recent events, including record-breaking drought in the West, severe flooding in the Southeast, and the water-quality crisis in Flint, MI, have elevated a national dialogue on the state of our Nation’s water resources and infrastructure. This dialogue is increasingly important as a growing population and changing climate continue to exacerbate water challenges. Accordingly, we must work together to build a sustainable water future—one in which everyone has access to the safe, clean, and affordable water they need, when and where they need it.
That’s why, as part of World Water Day, the White House is hosting a Water Summit to shine a spotlight on the importance of cross-cutting, creative solutions to solving the water problems of today, as well as to highlight the innovative strategies that will catalyze change in how we use, conserve, protect, and think about water in the years to come.
In addition, following the White House’s call to action issued in December, more than 150 external institutions are joining the Federal government in announcing new efforts and commitments to enhance the sustainability of water in the United States by managing our water resources and infrastructure for the long term. These efforts and commitments include needed steps to accelerate development, demonstration, and deployment of innovative technologies; support critical research; enhance data collection, access, and usability; conserve water and water basins; raise public awareness; and deliver tools and technologies so that we can ensure that future generations have access to safe and reliable water resources.
The commitments being made include the following:
Nearly $4 billion in private capital committed to investment in a broad range of water-infrastructure projects nationwide. This includes $1.5 billion from Ultra Capital to finance decentralized and scalable water-management solutions, and $500 million from Sustainable Water to develop water reclamation and reuse systems.
More than $1 billion from the private sector over the next decade to conduct research and development into new technologies. This includes $500 million from GE to fuel innovation, expertise, and global capabilities in advanced water, wastewater, and reuse technologies.
A Presidential Memorandum and supporting Action Plan on building national capabilities for long-term drought resilience in the United States, including by setting drought resilience policy goals, directing specific drought resilience activities to be completed by the end of the year, and permanently establishing the National Drought Resilience Partnership as an interagency task force responsible for coordinating drought-resilience, response, and recovery efforts.
Nearly $35 million this year in Federal grants from the Environmental Protection Agency, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the National Science Foundation, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture to support cutting-edge water science;
The release of a new National Water Model that will dramatically enhance the Nation’s river-forecasting capabilities by delivering forecasts for approximately 2.7 million locations, up from 4,000 locations today (a 700-fold increase in forecast density).
Moving forward, the Administration will continue to carefully examine and take action in areas where further effort is needed to protect our Nation’s water resources and build a sustainable water future.

Working Together to Build a Sustainable Water Future

A Press Release from the White House

Water challenges are facing communities and regions across the United States, impacting millions of lives and costing billions of dollars in damages. These challenges are particularly problematic in predominantly poor, minority, or rural communities, where water inequality can go hand- in-hand with socioeconomic inequality. Recent events, including record-breaking drought in the West, severe flooding in the Southeast, and the water-quality crisis in Flint, MI, have elevated a national dialogue on the state of our Nation’s water re- sources and infrastructure. This dialogue is increasingly important as a growing population and changing climate continue to exacerbate water challenges. Accordingly, we must work together to build a sustainable water future—one in which everyone has access to the safe, clean, and afford- able water they need, when and where they need it.

That’s why, as part of World Water Day, the White House is hosting a Water Summit to shine a spotlight on the importance of cross-cutting, creative solutions to solving the water problems of today, as well as to highlight the innovative strategies that will catalyze change in how we use, conserve, protect, and think about water in the years to come.

In addition, following the White House’s call to action issued in December, more than 150 external institutions are joining the Federal government in announcing new efforts and commitments to enhance the sustainability of water in the United States by managing our water resources and infrastructure for the long term. These efforts and commitments include needed steps to accelerate development, demonstration, and deployment of innovative technologies; support critical research; enhance data collection, access, and usability; conserve water and water basins; raise public awareness; and deliver tools and technologies so that we can ensure that future generations have access to safe and reliable water resources.
The commitments being made include the following:

Nearly $4 billion in private capital committed to investment in a broad range of water-infrastructure projects nationwide. This includes $1.5 billion from Ultra Capital to finance decentralized and scalable water-management solutions, and $500 million from Sustainable Water to develop water reclamation and reuse systems.

More than $1 billion from the private sector over the next decade to conduct research and development into new technologies. This includes $500 million from GE to fuel innovation, expertise, and global capabilities in advanced water, wastewater, and reuse  technologies.

A Presidential Memorandum and supporting Action Plan on building national capabilities for long-term drought resilience in the United States, including by setting drought resilience policy goals, directing specific drought resilience activities to be completed by the end of the year, and permanently establishing the National Drought Resilience Partnership as an interagency task force responsible for coordinating drought-resilience, response, and recovery efforts.

Nearly $35 million this year in Federal grants from the Environmental Protection Agency, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the National Science Foundation, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture to support cutting-edge water science.

The release of a new National Water Model that will dramatically enhance the Nation’s river-forecasting capabilities by delivering forecasts for approximately 2.7 mil- lion locations, up from 4,000 locations today (a 700-fold increase in forecast density).

Moving forward, the Administration will continue to carefully examine and take action in areas where further effort is needed to protect our Nation’s water resources and build a sustainable water future.

CoreNet - Student Feature

IN THE SPOTLIGHT: Carlie Finamore

Carli Finamore is excited to start her career in Corporate Real Estate just having graduated in May of this year with a Bachelor’s of Science in Civil Engineering and a minor in Construction Management from NYU Tandon School of Engineering, formally NYU Polytechnic Institute. She plans to live and work in the NYC Metro Area.

#1 How did you get involved with CoreNet?
Two summers ago, I interned with Syska Hennessy Group where I met Kristin Liu, a CoreNet member. I was inspired by her work ethic and industry involvement, and I turned to her during my career search to discuss potential options. Recognizing my
desire to network and grow as a young professional, she invited me to a CoreNet event, and I realized that CoreNet is such a amazing resource. Joining CoreNet allowed me to immerse myself with other industry professionals to obtain valuable insights before I start working full time.

#2 What events/programs have you been involved with since you joined?
I attended an intimate Student Event and the New Year’s Eve dinner. The Student mixer, my first event, was a great way to get introduced to CoreNet’s networking opportunities. I met a number of CRE professionals, one of whom will be my coworker at my new job. I had a fabulous night at the New Year’s Eve party and had the pleasure of spending a good portion of the night with the Young Leaders of CoreNet. They were so inspiring!

#3 How has your involvement with CoreNet helped you with your education/career?
To better prepare for my new job, I want to get more involved with CoreNet. Networking is a love of mine, and I feel that soft skills are of paramount importance. I am excited to have CoreNet connections already. I believe that a versatile set of resources and connections are the basis for innovative thinking, and CoreNet is the perfect platform for this!

#4 What do you hope to gain from CoreNet in the long term?
Through CoreNet I can meet many distinguished professionals, some of whom I would like to have as my mentors. I truly enjoy hearing about and learning from the experiences of others. Once I start working, I would love to use CoreNet to network with potential clients, and I would love to help CoreNet reach future students.

#5 What advice would you give to current students seeking a career in real estate?
The best advice I can give is to network! Go beyond simply attending Career Fairs and actually attend real industry events. Taking this initiative shows your willingness and eagerness to be part of the industry. CoreNet is a great way to get the in- side-scoop and to make valuable connections. Furthermore, making a positive first impression on some professionals could be helpful in your job search.


Testing the Tap

By Alexandra Betesh, KBA Lease Services
An interview with Frank Selamie, Consulting & Testing Services Inc. (Pictured below)

New York City is known for having some of the best tap water in the country. It comes from the watershed in southeastern New York State and is fed into reservoirs and lakes through a system of aqueducts and tunnels, where it awaits disinfection and distribution through service lines throughout the City. Although the water is fundamentally high quality, lots of work is required to keeping this water protected from contaminants.

Frank Selamie started Consulting & Testing Services, Inc. (CTSI)  almost 24 years ago to help protect New Yorkers (and people everywhere) from countless environmental  hazards. Today, it is one of the city’s top five environmental consulting firms. With close to 35 industrial hygienists, CTSI remediates various types of water contamination or hazardous materials in buildings. It also develops “proactive maintenance programs, safety audits and inspections, and training for water maintenance teams to prevent contamination before it occurs.” CTSI works with clients that include hospitals, universities, office buildings, and industrial and manufacturing facilities.

CTSI also helps its clients construct policies and procedures that are compliant with local and federal regulations. Agencies like the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) protect  water  distribution systems on a federal level, creating various rules and regulations. However, the EPA does not have a large enforcement arm throughout the different states and cities, so it relies on local authorities like the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and the New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to enforce these federal regulations. The DEP also creates local regulations and laws with the help of the New York City Department of Health (DOH) to control local water quality.

The New York City reservoirs are highly regulated by the DEP, which has inspectors and investigators who make sure the reservoirs are  properly  protected. They use disinfection methods such as chlorine, bromine, and UV sterilization to provide high quality water for distribution.

However, water can be contaminated elsewhere in the distribution process, including plumbing systems and cooling towers. Cooling towers, if contaminated, can spread bacteria (like Legionella) throughout the environment. Legionella contaminated aerosols from cooling towers can spread as far as one mile from the source air conditioning systems. Additionally, recent  cases of harmful metals, including lead, have been found in the water of some schools and homes. This is usually a result of lead found in solder, fixtures, and pipes that is absorbed into the water.

In light of these recent contaminants, Mr. Selamie explains that the DOH and the DEP have become “stricter as far as the type of inspections and testing that they are requiring,” developing additional rules and regulations that increase the frequency of water testing, mandate remediation plans, and require that specific maintenance teams and programs are established to prevent future contamination. The maintenance team, who will be tasked with overseeing all water related main- tenance, must consist of an engineer- ing firm, a plumbing firm, a water treatment consulting firm, and an environmental consulting firm (like  CTSI).

In response to the Legionella problem specifically, the “DOH now mandates that all cooling towers within New York State be registered and have frequent inspections. As of March 1, 2016, most buildings were forced to develop maintenance plans and identify how they were going to implement them.” Any person  who  performs  cleaning and disinfection must be certified. The inspection itself must meet several requirements, and a record of all inspection findings,  deficiencies, corrective actions, cleaning and disinfection, and tests performed must be available for at least three years.“There are not enough available certified laboratories to process the larger water testing demands,” according to Mr. Selamie. “As we speak right now, these laboratories are bombarded with lead samples and are backlogged for about a month.”

Although Mr. Selamie works predominantly with building owners, facility management companies and developers, he explains that tenants must also be attentive to their water quality. Typically, the landlord provides the tenants with the base-building water, and the tenants are responsible for their own construction. Mr. Selamie explains that “tenants are responsible for maintaining their own base plumbing and plumbing fixtures. Tenants face two main concerns. The first is the need for an effective post-construction flushing protocol to prevent contamination in newly installed plumbing systems. Far too often, we have encountered cases where metal filings and debris from construction build up inside the plumbing and aerators, leading to slime bacteria and discoloration. Also, tenants should be aware that water can remain stagnant for a long period of time within tenant spaces and this too can lead to bacterial growth.” Mr. Selamie suggests that the tenants create a maintenance program to ensure water safety and consult with the landlord to find qualified vendors to assist  in  the space.Although New York City is fortunate to have an excellent water supply,  it  is clear that the recent contamination problems have shown that we cannot take our water for granted. New regulations and laws combined with diligent water management programs are needed to ensure that the water that actually reaches our tap is clean and safe.


Water Worries

By Patricia Culligan

Like impending doom, environmental issues simmer until a crisis occurs. Such was the case in Flint, Michigan, when toxic levels of lead were detected in the city’s water supply, and suddenly, people everywhere wondered if their drinking water was safe.

A switch in Flint’s water supply chemistry caused the increased leaching in the antiquated lead pipes. Problems with lead in school water supplies have dragged on for years — aggravated by ancient buildings and plumbing, prolonged by official neglect and tight budgets, and enabled by a gaping loophole in federal rules that largely exempts schools from responsibility for the purity of their water.

Congress could easily have cracked down on lead in schools. In fact, it once did. The 1988 Lead Contamination Control Act required schools to scrap lead-lined water coolers, test drinking water and remedy any contamination they found. But a federal appeals court struck down part of the law affecting schools in 1996. And while some states have devised their own lead-testing rules, federal lawmakers have yet to revisit the issue.

Recently, we had the opportunity to talk about water issues with Dr. Pa- tricia Culligan, Professor of Civil Engineering and Engineering Me- chanics at Columbia University. She is also Associate Director of the Data Science Institute at Columbia and Co-Director of the Earth Institute’s Urban Design Lab.

New York City has been very aggressive in replacing lead piping in schools,” said Dr. Culligan. Officials have uprooted and replaced all lead pipes leading from water mains into schools, swiftly replaced equipment when tests showed high lead levels, and ordered weekly pipe  flushing at any school with a violation. All schools’ water is regularly tested. The result has been that only 1.3 percent of nearly 90,000 water tests have exceeded the city’s lead threshold.

Dr. Culligan’s expertise is ground water, from which approximately 25 percent of our drinking water is extracted. And we’re extracting it faster than it can be replaced. About 25 percent of ground water that has been extracted in the past 100 years occurred in the previous 10 years of our current century. Much of this water is used for irrigation of crops that are inappropriate for their environment.

As Dr. Culligan said, “We need to pay much closer attention to how we use our ground water.” Part of the solution is rethinking our food supply and being smarter about overwatering. So much of this world’s food is grown in climates where it becomes difficult to support all the water needed to reach harvest. The continuous pumping of irrigated water also requires energy, and this energy is subsidized, which compounds the problem.

“We’re lucky in New York City. Our average citizen will use less water because we don’t typically irrigate lawns, and we live in smaller spaces like 1,200-square-foot apartments, rather than in sprawling suburban homes. We have one of the cleanest city water supplies from draws like the Delaware Water Shed, and energy associated with moving water is mini- mal as it comes into the city,” said Dr. Culligan.

For the city’s part, much of the focus has been on storm water manage- ment. Rain water that falls in the city eventually drains to one central pipe, which doesn’t have the capacity to handle deluges of rain. This pipe sys- tem is more than 100 years old, and if it is too full, it discharges contami- nated water into local rivers. The city is aggressively addressing this issue with a 20-year project that is intro- ducing greenery back into the NYC landscape. This greenery is helping to absorb excess water and minimize runoff into the rivers.

On a state level, the Croton Water Filtration Plant Project began flowing water to taps in the Bronx and Manhattan last May. After seven years of construction, Croton water, which had always met contamination standards but had recurring problems with water color, is now providing quality water through low-energy gravity flow for today’s users and for future generations.

In terms of water consumption, downtown buildings have a watchdog in NYC’s Greener Greater Buildings Plan, which includes one of the first benchmarking ordinances passed in the US: Local Law 84 of 2009. This law requires private buildings over 50,000 sq ft and public sector buildings over 10,000 sq ft to report their energy and water consumption each year for public disclosure. LL84 gives building owners information about a building’s energy and water consumption compared to similar buildings, and tracks progress year over year to help in energy efficiency planning. Building owners are subject to a penalty if usage data is not submitted by May 1 every year.

One might think that commercial development is the largest user of water, but in fact, the data collect- ed basically indicates that housing uses more water per square foot than other entities. Our challenge in real estate development remains how we deal with older buildings and the antiquated lead pipes that are still in use.“Replacing lead pipes has to be a priority in retrofitting older buildings,” said Dr. Culligan.


How to Make Your Office a Den of Productivity

By Mark Benhar, President of Benhar Office Interiors
(As published on

No one ever designs an office space thinking, "This is going to be the least productive space possible." But when employees don't understand the best ways to utilize an office layout, their thinking can quickly and unintentionally turn this way. For example, take the debate over open-office plans that's been brewing on social media. It's a hot one, sparking strong feelings from people either defending or hating the space where they spend half of their waking hours. Employers who choose this plan, however, see its benefits clearly.

An open-office plan has the potential for a unique layout and a creative mix of spaces — both shared and private — that can have a huge impact on a company's creativity, innovation and collaboration. It enables people to easily brainstorm and chat with colleagues and makes employees feel that they are "in the know" on what's happening with the company. Moreover, the informal nature of this type of setup often gives younger workers the confidence to approach those more seasoned in their careers.
From a cost perspective, an open layout utilizes space more efficiently, saving companies money on their real estate footprint. The most perceptive leaders understand, however, that the real benefits come from the increased productivity and innovative ideas the open-office layout can foster, influencing the bottom line in a much more significant way than simply cutting costs.

Getting workers to understand all the benefits and best ways to use a space doesn’t require a complete reprogramming of how a company operates. At Benhar Office Interiors, we work with companies small and large to create the right, unique space for their culture and operations. But it doesn’t stop there. After an office design is completed, how do you get employees excited about it? Here are four approaches to help ensure your office becomes a den of productivity.
1. Openly discuss your workspace design
For leaders, one of the most effective and simple ways to help employees understand the benefits of a space is to discuss it proactively with them. Explain your vision and how you believe the space embraces — and impacts — the company's culture. Herman Miller, one of the world's largest office furniture manufacturers, suggests shifting away from using "my office" to "my workplace" to underscore the freedom an open plan brings. Open plans provide a flexible design platform, allowing for group spaces, informal areas, conference rooms and huddle spaces. People feel empowered when they have choices, so stress this benefit and create a culture where people embrace this freedom.

2. Be clear about and supportive of all modes and functions of work
Collaboration is important, but some modes of work, such as writing, require focus and concentration. At the same time, some job functions, such as HR, involve sensitive, private communications. Ensure that employees know they can find a private space, use a conference room or take a walk outside when private conversations need to happen. For times when workers need to concentrate without interruption or distraction, promote a culture of using signals that quickly let other employees know when someone needs to focus. This helps to maintain some personal space — and the ability to concentrate without distraction — in an open space.
Some signals include:

-Using headphones or earbuds

-Painted wood blocks in red, yellow and green to indicate when someone is free to talk

-Mobile whiteboards on casters can create a barrier with phrases such as "creativity in progress."

-Light signals placed on top of computer monitors can indicate when someone is busy to people approaching from front and back

3. Be sensitive to generational differences
Melding generations in the workplace brings a variety of viewpoints to the table, but also a variety of ideas on when and how to work. While it's important to be sensitive to generational differences, Herman Miller advises employers to beware of generational generalizing. Herman Miller's research on how generations work shows that an open plan can accommodate the face-to-face meetings that Millennials prefer, the focused concentration that both Boomers and Millennials seek,– and the flexibility and independence that GenXers strive for in their careers.

4. Listen to your employees
Finally, be open to change and address employees' concerns over time. Minor adaptations can provide increased acoustical or visual privacy if needed Minor adaptations can provide increased acoustical or visual privacy if needed, without significant cost or renovation to the space. Items like white noise machines can help quell distractions and offer more acoustical privacy. Stand-alone products such as Loook Industries' The Box Lounger, BuzziSpace's BuzziTwist or Haven Pods by Allermuir can quickly and cost effectively add more privacy to open spaces through sound blocking materials and visual barriers.

Communication is key to creating a den of productivity. Get employees excited about your vision by showing how a space is a direct reflection of your company's unique culture, and discussing how it will improve workplace productivity and creativity. Empower your employees to take advantage of the open plan's freedom of movement, and encourage them to openly discuss concerns. Celebrate your workspace's successes, and be open to adjusting when things aren't working for your company.

Ted Moudis Associates: 2016 Workplace Report


By Jamie Feuerborn, Manager of Workplace Strategy, and Judith Carlson, Workplace Analyst, at Ted Moudis Associates


As designers we spend most of our time researching and planning for change. Whether it’s a color on the wall or an entirely new business-driven strategy, the changes we propose affect our clients and their employees immensely. An effective and efficient office looks different for each client regardless of industry. So how can we assure that we are providing a comprehensive approach and a holistic design? It all starts with listening. Before a concept can be proposed we, as designers and strategists, must understand how the business works and what tools are required for employees to get work done. Our most important role is to identify the balance of trends that will produce a design that aligns business strategy with culture in the workplace.

There are, however, metrics to support the trends that drive workplace design for almost all our clients, from the start-up to the hedge fund. What exactly are they? We decided to leverage our benchmarking database at Ted Moudis Associates to both calculate real estate metrics and provide broader insight on the trends and strategies that are driving workplace design in 2016. In doing so, we quantified the commonalities in trends across industries. The wealth of data we collected for our report outlines current and future trends, such as the ever-increasing application of open plan workspaces, the shift toward more communal and amenity based work environments, and the rise of designated quiet space.

One of the common questions we are hearing from our clients is, “should we embrace benching, and if so, to what degree?” The right answer of course, depends upon the work culture and space needs of each organization. Interestingly, our findings have indicated that benching has become the prevailing solution for open plan, with 67% off all open workspaces now adopting this platform instead of a traditional workstation or “cubicle”.  Meanwhile, private offices account for just 11% of the more than 1,700 workspaces benchmarked, bringing the proportion of open plan workspace to an all-time high of 89%. Just a few years ago, it was considered “progressive” for a workspace to contain about 20% private offices. We believe this trend will continue going forward, as more organizations adopt 100% open environments and implement leveraged seating models. With the needle firmly shifted to more open and collaborative space, the need for quiet space for focus and heads down work has only gotten clearer. To this end, we find more and more companies providing rooms dubbed as “quiet cars,” “coding caves,” and “libraries.” As we look forward to the new year’s worth of data to be collected our expectation is to find the number of alternative seats assigned to these quiet zones increase. We encourage you to download the full report here and tell us what you think. Is your workspace aligning with these numbers? Do you agree with our predictions? We look forward to continuing our benchmarking and being able to share future data with our clients, colleagues, and fellow CoreNet members. 


What are Innovation Districts and How Can They Benefit Companies - A Workshop

Join us on June 16 at LMHQ at 150 Broadway for a special workshop with CEO of Industry City Andrew Kimball, Director of Intersection David Gilford and Director of Technology and Civic Innovation at Microsoft John Paul Farmer , as they reveal to the audience how corporations can leverage Innovation Districts to grow their businesses. Registration is now open: . 


General Registration for the 2016 CoreNet Annual Golf Outing Begins Today

Join us on Monday, July 11 at the Century and Old Oaks Country Clubs in Purchase, New York, for the 2016 CoreNet Annual Golf Outing Fundraiser. A portion of the event's proceeds will be donated to the ACE Mentor Program. Registration begins today. Register now at: 




Annual Meeting and Volunteer Appreciation Reception

Join us on June 28 at 11 Times Square on 8th Avenue and 41st Street for the Annual Meeting and Volunteer Appreciation Reception. The State of the Chapter Address will be given and the 2016 CoreNet NYC Chapter Awards Ceremony and Volunteer Ceremonies will follow the address. Registration is now open:


The New York Paradox - Authentic Innovation

Join us on June 9th at the Grand Hyatt on 42nd Street for a special discussion with President and CEO of the New York City Economic Development Corporation, Maria Torres-Springer, as she reveals how the EDC encourages inclusive innovation and economic growth through the built environment. Registration is now open:

Photo Credit: NYCEDC

CoreNet NYC is Proud to be a Partner of WORKTECH16 New York Conference

Please join us May 26-27, for this two day event at the Convene Conference Center at 730 Third Ave., to hear the biggest and brightest names in CRE debate, discuss and divulge in the latest thinking on the future of work and the workplace. Register here,

Upcoming Event: "The Business of Storytelling"

Learning how to use the power and influence of storytelling can be very beneficial to gaining consensus behind a shared purpose within your organization. Listen to Mike Saporito of SmartHabit speak at our workshop, “The Business of Storytelling” on Wednesday, May 4 at the Skadden office at 4 Times Square, to understand the impact of these skills. Registration is open now,


How Coworking and Flexible Workplaces are Impacting NYC


 By Cynthia Foster, Colliers Office Services, Colliers International 




WeWork. Regus. Serendipity Labs. LiquidSpace. These are just a few of the names that have staked their claim in the coworking landscape. With coworking and a desire for flexible workplaces on the rise, it’s worth considering the impact these kinds of spaces have had on New York City real estate, as well as what’s driving the increase in desirability.

In 2015, WeWork alone was responsible for 3% of all Manhattan leasing and 9% of all FIRE sector deals, leasing nearly 900,000 square feet in total according to Colliers Research. Considering WeWork’s 3-million-square-foot occupancy in Manhattan plus that of Regus with approximately 1.4 million square feet, when you add in other large players like Corporate Suites, Virgo Business Centers, Jay Suites and a vast host of smaller operators, the footprint of coworking/flexible space easily tops 5 million square feet. While that may seem a large number by some standards, when compared to the combined 504,737,604 square feet of office space in Midtown, Midtown South and Downtown, it is actually quite small.

While Midtown South has proven to be a well-liked submarket for many coworking and flexible office spaces—notably, WeWork’s headquarters is on West 18th Street—deals for these spaces have been turning up across the city. In Midtown, WeWork has taken 60,000 sq. ft. of former USPS space at 450 Lexington Avenue, on top of the 109,631 sq. ft. subleased from Colgate-Palmolive at 300 Park Avenue. Downtown’s absorption rate ticked up with a 235,000-sq.-ft. WeWork lease at 85 Broad Street, the former headquarters of Goldman Sachs; while Regus has also taken hold in former Goldman Sachs space at 77 Water Street. Regus also is extending its reach to a fourth borough, with a 32,000-sq.-ft. office and retail building on the St. George waterfront in Staten Island, announced in February.

The proliferation of providers is noteworthy. According to AlleyVoice, there are more than 50 coworking space operators in NYC, with those in Manhattan including Cowork|rs, AlleyNYC, BluePrint Health, Center4, Centre for Social Innovation, Collab, Con Artist Shared Workspace, FABWORKS, The Farm Soho, 500 Startups, 42West24, Fueled Collective, Impact Hub NYC, Grind, Hive at 55, In Good Company, Joynture, Micro Office Solutions, New Work City, OfficeLinks Hub, The Productive, Projective Space, SoTechie, Spark Labs, Studio Guild, Sunshine Suites, TechSpace, WECREATE, Wix Lounge, WorkHouse NYC, and The Yard. In accordance with supply and demand, the average monthly cost of a dedicated desk at a coworking space in Manhattan is $526 as indicated in a recent Prodigy Network publication.

So what’s driving this uptick in activity? Its growth can be attributed in part to technological advances, shifting work/life priorities, and an evolving economy that has redefined what many think of as traditional office hours and workplaces.

“The ubiquitous ‘coffee shop entrepreneur’ that migrates from their home-based office to the nearest cafe has largely given way to a new group of start-up oriented individuals and businesses that recognize the need for innovative and functional space,” notes Rebecca Green in “Collaborate or Compete: How Do Landlords Respond to the Rise in Coworking?” in the Cornell Real Estate Review.

The exceptional increase in coworking space continues to be driven by a surge of millennials entering the employment marketplace. The Brookings Institution estimates that by the year 2025, a staggering 75 percent of the workforce will be the so-called Net Generation. The expectations these employee cohorts have for their office environment—with flexibility being perhaps the top priority in many instances—have continued to rapidly evolve. The latest in workplace-strategy jargon is the ‘workplace of choice,’ which allows employees to choose how they want to work on a particular day. Choices range from a place to have privacy to a space for collaboration to breakout rooms. It’s part of the social experience; choice of social environment for working goes back to interaction. The idea is to maximize productivity and also to address how people work today.

But it’s not only millennials driving companies’ exploration into coworking and flexible office space. Freelance workers of all ages have taken to these kinds of spaces, realizing in some cases that the “working from home” fantasy held by many doesn’t always hold up its end of the bargain for everyone. To wit, according to a piece in The New York Times, Whitney Tingle, cofounder of organic-meal delivery company Sakara Life, found out that “there was no beginning or end to work,” after she began working out of her home. “I would get distracted by dust bunnies under the desk and end up vacuuming in the middle of the day, or look at myself in the mirror at 7 p.m. and realize I was still in pajamas.” The experience prompted Ms. Tingle and her business partner to apply to Neuehouse, a coworking space with locations in several cities that launched in New York City’s Madison Square neighborhood in 2013.

Further reflecting this societal trend, Fortune 100 companies are increasingly taking desks in temporary facilities, both as a cost cutting measure and as a bridge to attracting and retaining talent by providing environments that cultivate a mix of networking, training, team events, and ideation. WeWork is accommodating tenants with large numbers of employees by offering full floors and modifying space for security, reception, IT, etc.

This paradigm shift has had a considerable effect on the commercial real estate industry, on top of the aforementioned leasing activity. Recognizing the increasing desire by both individuals and organizations to seek out collaborative work environments, Colliers noted some of the key benefits of adapting a coworking mindset in its "How Coworking Can Improve Flexibility, Reduce Costs and Increase Employee Engagement" report. Positive takeaways include cultural alignment, creation of a more social environment, the ability to provide on-demand solutions and—perhaps the most compelling factor—a not-insignificant amount of cost savings.

With coworking and flexible office space continuing their ascent across the New York City real estate landscape both statistically and anecdotally, it's clear that these kinds of spaces have become a viable alternative to traditional office settings in the city.


And the Winners of the 2016 Annual Dinner Social Media Contest Are...

Amanda Carroll (@Ajcarroll183), Prutha Raithatha (@Dontshoeme), Sarah Brown (@Broncoschick80), Kristin Liu (@Magnficentkris) and Kimberly Allan (@mackimallan)! Congratulations! We loved seeing your photos, thanks for sharing!

Photo Credit: Prutha Raithatha

Tonight is the Night!

We can't wait to see you on the Intrepid tonight at 6 pm for our 2016 Annual Dinner. Don't forget to snap lots of photos throughout the event, post to Twitter and Instagram and tag #CoreNetNYC16 & @corenetglobalny for a chance to win free admission to a CoreNet NYC program of your choice. See you on the ship! 

'Tis the Week!

The week of our 2016 Annual Dinner has finally arrived! Just two more days until our inaugural Disruptive Innovation Design Competition is unveiled on the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space MuseumCheck out the 4th finalist! 

Interview with Alex Foster, Alto Saxophonist from Saturday Night Live to Perform at CoreNet NYC 2016 Annual Dinner

Interview by Kristine Scotto, Workwell Partners, and Sonya Verny, Serraview


A musical heavyweight, saxophonist Alex Foster has been a part of many of the world’s most influential sounds to date. Best known in recent years for his work as the alto saxophonist in the house band of Saturday Night Live, he has also shared the stage with numerous world-class performers in varying genres. Besides being a member of the SNL house band, he is also the musical director of the Mingus Big Band, Orchestra, and Dynasty and is currently completing his latest album featuring all original compositions.

What is one thing that no one knows about you?

“I fly to Athens, Greece a few times a year to visit my teenage daughter.  I also lived on East 52nd at one point in my life.”

You have shared the stage with numerous world class performers.  Who was your favorite?

“Miles Davis.  He inspired me since I was a kid.  There is a movie coming out about his life that I can’t wait to see.”

Who has been your biggest influence?

“My grandparents. I love them.”

Disruptive Innovation.  What does it mean to you?

“Disruptive innovation is anyone thinking at a higher level of norm.  Thought is a wonderful thing but you need to take action.”

Where can people find you in NYC to experience a great live experience?

“Most Mondays I am playing at the Jazz Standard on E 27th Street.  And of course you can always catch me on SNL in the corner!”


Wired for Wireless: The Future of the Wireless Building and Why You Should Care

The best apps are about mobility and ability to work anywhere” – Matthew Baldassano, Technical Director, Commscope. We received great insight into the effectiveness of wireless in office space today at our “Wired for Wireless” panel.


Let the Countdown to CoreNet NYC's 2016 Annual Dinner Begin

Just 10 days until the big reveal of the Disruptive Innovation Design Competition finalists at our 2016 Annual Dinner on the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum, Here is a sneak peek at the 3rd finalist’s work in progress. See the full displays on April 14th!


Excitement is building with another sneak peek of CoreNet NYC's inaugural Design Competition. 

The winning design firm will be announced at the CoreNet NYC Annual Dinner on April 14th at the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum


CoreNet NYC 2016 Annual Dinner Design Competition

Take a peek at the vision for Disruptive Innovation from 1 of 4 finalists. The full exhibit will be featured at our 2016 Annual Dinner on Thursday, April 14, 2016 at the Intrepid Museum.


Hi-Tech to Manufacturing: Small Industry in Brooklyn

Interview with Brian T. Coleman, CEO, Greenpoint Manufacturing and Design Center (GDMC)

We are here to make homes for good jobs,” says Brian T. Coleman, who is now entering into his 12th year as CEO of the Greenpoint Manufacturing and Design Center (GMDC). GMDC is a not- for-profit real estate developer that has rehabilitated seven manufacturing buildings in Brooklyn since 1992. Its mission is to develop and manage affordable industrial spaces in the outer boroughs for small manufacturing companies and their workforces. According to Coleman, “Small manufacturers create good middle-class jobs.”

Today, GMDC owns and manages five of these buildings, representing more than half a million square feet with over 100 tenants employing more than 500 people. “We have woodworkers, metal spinners, glass blowers and costume makers. We have model makers, new high tech companies, upholsterers and display makers. It really runs the gamut. Geico Insurance’s Gecko mascot was developed in our building,” he said. The tenants in the GMDC buildings typically do custom, value-added production. The scale is smaller and the space they occupy is customized to the size of the tenant’s operation. Yet, they are making a difference. The average salary for one of these jobs in a GMDC building is around $48,000 a year. Currently, 96% of GMDC tenant workers live close to their job.

“People are living in and supporting the community where they work— this is something that we are really proud of. What can be a better scenario than that?” interjects Coleman.

GMDC looks for multi-story buildings with good light and high ceilings. Most buildings then receive gut renovations. Coleman explains, “For our latest project at 1102 Atlantic Avenue, we added new heat, electric, plumbing, roofing, windows, an elevator, and solar arrays.”

GMDC also works hard to control operating costs. It entered into PILOT (Payment in Lieu of Taxes) programs with the New York City Industrial Development Agency on their last two projects, deferring taxes for at least a decade on these buildings. In addition, they have been a leader in solar energy use. “Initially we owned all the solar on our buildings. Now, we do power purchase agreements so that it does not cost us a dime.”

GMDC is nimble and has become creative in its operations. In their 810 Humboldt Street building for example, GMDC worked with a developer and operator to create Gotham Greens, the first urban hydroponic farm in the country. Due to its success, they have built another facility and are working on a third.

GMDC has almost $30 million in debt, so like all landlords it has to be sure that its tenants can pay their rent. GMDC works with very few start- ups. Coleman elaborates, “We want more dependable and stable companies that have proven concepts and proven businesses.”

As a not-for-profit, GMDC cannot technically lobby, but they report on the state of their industry, letting the media and government decision makers know what is beneficial and what is detrimental for small sector manufacturing businesses. “We let them know what is hurting our ability to expand and what we need from them in order to continue to make homes for these small businesses,” he said.

GMDC operates in a very competitive environment. Manhattan’s rents have increased over the years, forcing small manufacturing companies to migrate to Dumbo, Greenpoint, Williamsburg, and parts of the Bronx. Some of these areas have become more expensive as well, forcing developers like GMDC to become more creative and take on additional risk. Coleman explains, “The whole sector is under siege. There have been a lot of conversions, both legal and illegal, from residences to the type of loft buildings that we operate in.” GMDC even has some unconventional “friendlier” competitors, such as the Brooklyn Navy Yard and the Brooklyn army terminal. He adds, “They have access to a huge capital stream that we cannot compete with.”

Coleman is actively looking at buildings in the Bronx, Queens, Long Is- land City and East New York. Although these regions may be far away from their initial footprint, the market demands that they expand to these areas

GMDC promotes itself as a national model, encouraging others to replicate its mission. To make this possible, other developers should, in Coleman’s words, “learn to take more calculated risks on new technologies for their tenants. Don’t dismiss new ideas right away, be more receptive. People may think you are crazy, but doing real research and gaining some experience can help prove even the most risky concepts as viable and replicable. Look at [them] closely, go slowly, and develop a partnership with the tenant, and luckily it will all work out.”

Although there aren’t as many manufacturing jobs as there were 20 years ago, 50 years ago or even 75 years ago, GMDC is still committed to keeping manufacturing jobs in New York and encouraging their development.


Expert's Corner

Q: In considering a site in the outer boroughs of New York City, what types of state and local incentives are avail- able and how can organizations best manage the incentives once received?

Expert 1: Joe Lacy, Managing Director, Biggins Lacy Shapiro & Co.

A: As the Lower Manhattan market continues to strengthen, the outer boroughs become an attractive opportunity for economic development in New York City, especially considering the significant state and local incentives. One of the most potent incentives has been the City’s recently reauthorized Relocation Employment Assistance Program, known more commonly as REAP. Through REAP, the City is able to deliver a partially refundable tax credit (up to $36,000 per employee over 12 years) to companies relocating jobs from Manhattan (south of 96th Street) or from outside the City to designated areas in the outer boroughs. REAP has also been the City’s most effective response to the incentives developed by competing markets, such as the Grow New Jersey Program, that are aimed at attracting Manhattan based companies.

Beyond REAP, New York City and New York State employ a deep and broad arsenal of incentives intended to attract and retain jobs and capital investment to the outer boroughs, including: The largest incentive packages, however, are of little value if companies are unable to effectively manage the reporting and claiming process, once the incentives are approved. Typically, the absence of a designated internal or external administrator is the most common reason why incentives are left unclaimed. The administrative process often requires the marshaling of information from resources throughout a company, including payroll, tax, and real estate. However, the information gathering is rarely the responsibility of those departments. To greatly increase the likelihood that the full incentive value will be realized, firms should designate a single internal resource or engage an external incentive advisor to “own” the reporting-and-claiming process and to coordinate the data gathering and tracking. 

Expert 2: Tom Stringer, Managing Director & Service Leader - Site Selection & Incentives, BDO USA, LLP

A: While Manhattan’s real estate prices continue to soar, corporate users with an eye on the outer boroughs and reaches of the Tri-State area will find many opportunities to secure state and local business incentives to support relocation and ongoing operations.

New York

Office users considering a move to the outer boroughs may qualify for state tax incentives through the Excelsior Jobs Program, which offers refundable tax credits for job creation, capital investment, certain investment in real property, and R&D spending. Empire State Development may also provide cash grants for high impact projects competing with out of state locations. On the local side, New York City’s Relocation Employment Assistance Program (REAP) provides tax credit of $3,000 per employee for 12 years, refundable for the first five years of the project. Businesses must locate north of 96th Street in Manhattan or in one of the other four boroughs. New York City’s Industrial and Commercial Abatement Program (ICAP) provides property tax abatements for up to 25 years with enhanced benefits avail- able to businesses locating in the outer boroughs and certain targeted areas of Manhattan.

If incentives are critical and a New York location is desired, we recommend that our clients take a close look at Nassau and Suffolk Counties. Both are home to several aggressive Industrial Development Agencies (IDAs) and strong supply of Class A and industrial opportunities. Here clients can explore all the same state benefits and capture IDA savings as well, including property tax abatements, sales tax exemptions and mortgage re- cording tax exemptions. For the right project, these IDAs will reduce existing assessments and provide significant tax abatements going forward.

New Jersey

Manhattan-based office users considering the outer boroughs are likely to take a look at options in Northern New Jersey. The GROW New Jersey program, which recently replaced the Business Employment Incentive Program (BEIP), is hard to beat, offering generous credits for 10-year terms. Depending on the location, base credits range from $500 to $5,000 per job, with bonus amounts available for paying above average wages, achieving LEED Silver certification, or locating near a light rail station. Businesses in a target industry, such as financial services, need to create just 25 new jobs to participate. Certain investment targets apply, depending on the type of project. GROW credits may be sold or transferred for at least 75% of their value.

Securing Incentives

Wherever the business locates, state and local incentive programs require time consuming, often complex compliance efforts to ensure that all savings are fully realized, in some cases for 10 years or longer. Successful compliance requires participation from Finance, Human Resources, Tax and other departments. We strongly recommend that real estate professionals working on incentive negotiations collaborate up front with colleagues in these departments. Identify the reporting requirements early and ensure that a team is in place for the duration of the project to provide critical data and to satisfy filing obligations. Compliance tends to be most challenging in the first year but can run efficiently and survive employee turnover for years to come if a strong process is in place.


"Wired for Wireless: The Future of the Wireless Building and Why You Should Care"

Join us for this panel discussion lead by Matthew Baldassano, Technical Director at Commscope and Arie Barendrecht, CEO and Co-Founder at Wired Score on Thursday, March 31 at STATE Grill & Bar inside the Empire State Building. Register now, 



NYC's Outer Boroughs: A Destination in Their Own Right


By Vishaan Chakrabarti, Founder, Partnership for Architecture and Urbanism (PAU) 

Twenty years ago, up-and-coming Brooklyn was the affordable housing choice for Manhattan commuters.  That’s still true, though many areas of Brooklyn are now as expensive as Manhattan. But the game change in New York’s most recognizable borough is that Brooklyn is no longer a bedroom community to Manhattan. With two and a half mil- lion residents, it is a city in its own right where residents live, work, and play.

We recently had the opportunity to talk with Vishaan Chakrabarti, founder of the new firm, Partnership for Architecture and Urbanism, previous partner of SHoP Architects, and professor in the School of Architecture at Columbia University,  about what’s   happening in the boroughs and the future of real estate in Brooklyn and beyond.

In addition to the obvious reasons for Brooklyn’s renaissance, which began with the borough’s affordable hous- ing stock, Brooklyn’s technology base and its less buttoned-up culture have made this borough a more comfortable and easier place to conduct business.

“You don’t have to dress like Mad Men’s Don Draper in Brooklyn,” said Chakrabarti. “You can work in a different way and still be productive.”

And like the incoming tide, what started in Brooklyn is seeping into the sand in many directions. Sunnyside Yards, Willets Point, and Long Island City are poised for development, and Queens is close behind. “Queens will be exciting,” said Chakrabarti, “because it’s the most ethnically-diverse county in the United States.” Infusing new development into this multi- cultural mix should result in some groundbreaking business collaborations and innovations.

The Bronx, too, is experiencing resurgence with many new residential options. Affordability is part of the reason, but Chakrabarti also pointed to transportation access (the 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, B and D subway lines run deep into the Bronx) as a major factor in growth and the borough’s outstanding sports venues.

We’re all familiar with Mayor de Blasio’s new Housing New York Plan, which calls for an overhaul of housing programs and tax incentives to spur the construction of thousands of low-rent apartments for the poor, as well as benefits for teachers, firefighters and other lower-income workers priced out of escalating real estate prices and gentrified neighborhoods. De Blasio’s plan, which needs approval by the state legislature, would re- quire developers throughout the city to set aside 25 to 30 percent of a project’s apartments for poor and low-in- come residents in return for city tax breaks.

Aside from de Blasio’s plan, Chakrabarti said there are other over- arching urban plans, “but not in a top-down way.” The biggest issue he cited is in substandard infrastructure. “We have a huge  deficit in the subway system,” he said. “It’s designed to bring people to Manhattan, and not everyone is going to Manhattan.” Other transportation options must be considered. At this juncture, Mayor de Blasio is looking at the New York ferry system, and bikes are another viable and environmentally-friendly option for moving people around.

There’s no doubt that the outer boroughs are becoming a destination in their own right, according to Chakrabarti. With the Marriott Residence Inn opening in the Bronx (the Bronx’s first hotel) and numerous other hotels under construction, strength in the hospitality sector is at an all- time high. Projects like the Residence Inn at 125 rooms and four stories do not dominate the landscape, but vertical construction and greater density are also on the rise. High rises in Brooklyn, for instance, are inevitable, but Chakrabarti stressed that Brooklyn’s unique character and history of low profile buildings “shouldn’t be changed.”

As all the boroughs become more self-sustaining, will commuters still need to travel to Manhattan to work? “Yes,” said Chakrabarti, “people will continue to travel to Manhattan, but I hope to see more commercial space in Brooklyn and Queens.” That change will engender more borough-based employment.

Another factor that has influenced employment in the boroughs was the exodus from Manhattan of corporate headquarters following 9/11. Some of these firms opened offices in the outer boroughs, and then returned to Manhattan, leaving the borough offices to function as satellites. But Chakrabarti thinks the number of firms are less than some believe. “That’s not what they’re about,” he said. “It’s more about diversification. Jobs in the boroughs focus on creativity and technology.”

A prime example of urban renewal and job renaissance in the boroughs can be found at the Brooklyn Navy Yard. “What’s going on in the Navy Yard is terrific,” said Chakrabarti. It’s select manufacturing (high tech lighting, for instance). “The whole definition of manufacturing is changing. Is software manufacturing? Yes, and we have wonderful old buildings in the boroughs that are ideally suited for this type of   business.” Unlike traditional manufacturing that requires re-zoning, light manufacturing can take place anywhere

“My hope is that we become a network of local business districts in neighborhoods throughout the city,” said Chakrabarti. “New York is on the cusp of that kind of evolution.”

About Vishaan Chakrabarti: Vishaan Chakrabarti is the Marc Holliday Associate Professor of Real Estate Development and the Director of CURE., the Center for Urban Real Estate, at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning & Preservation. An experienced architect, planner, and developer, Chakrabarti has transformed the Masters of Science in Real Estate Development into a curriculum dedicated to smart growth policies locally, nationally, and globally, with an emphasis on training students to synthetically tackle the three pillars of urban real estate, namely, the financial, the physical, and the transactional. Previously a partner at SHoP Architects, Chakrabarti recently started his own architecture firm, Partnership for Architecture and Urbanism.


Join us Tonight for Our St. Paddy's Meetup

We are looking forwarding to seeing everyone at tonight's St. Paddy’s Day Meetup at 5:30 PM at Hurley’s Saloon! Click here for more information:



Navigating Political Waters Under Change

“People will want to work for you if you advocate for them and you will be more successful when good people want to work for you,” Michelle Ferguson – We received great insight from several industry leaders at our Navigating Political Waters Under Change panel discussion on Wednesday.


2016 CoreNet NYC Annual Dinner is Approaching

Registration is open and table and event sponsorship opportunities are still available for the CoreNet NYC Annual Dinner on Thursday, April 14 at the Intrepid Museum! Click here for further information,


CoreNet NYC Collaborates with CoreNet Mid-Atlantic and CoreNet London to Host Webinar: Adding Value to Mergers & Acquisitions with CRE Real Estate Strategies

The CoreNet NYC Chapter recently collaborated with the CoreNet Mid-Atlantic Chapter and the CoreNet London Chapter to host the webinar ‘Adding Value to Mergers & Acquisitions with CRE Real Estate Strategies’, which joined CRE and industry professionals from all around the globe to share case studies about the critical role of CRE in mergers and acquisitions. Speakers Stephen Dunn from CSRA, Inc., Kevin Frankenburger from Marsh & McLennan, Peter Van Emburgh from CBRE Global Workplace Solutions and Troy Humphreys from Pfizer Ltd., discussed the best practices, lessons learned, valuable due diligence insight and other trends during the pre-and-post merger acquisition transactions as it relates to commercial real estate portfolios. 


Navigating Political Waters Under Change 

Join us for our 'Navigating Political Waters Under Change' panel on March 9 at 4 Times Square to learn tactics and strategies effectively needed to navigate in a changing political landscape. Register here, 


Tour of HarperCollins Office

Join our Workshops Committee for a behind the scenes tour of the HarperCollins office at 195 Broadway this Thursday, February 11! 


The Changing Nature of CRE Strategic Broker Partnerships

CoreNet NYC's 'The Changing Nature of CRE Strategic Broker Partnerships' event on February 23, 2016 is just around the corner. Register here, hope to see you there!

 Why Is Commercial Real Estate Still Titled Against Women?

To uncover why this is the case, Commercial Observer explored why the industry is male dominated and offers solutions to this gender inequality equality. Read about it here:


2016 CoreNet Annual Dinner

Save the date for our CoreNet NYC Annual Dinner - Thursday, April 14, 2016 at the Intrepid Museum. We hope to see you there! 


CoreNet NYC 2015 Chapter Awards


HarperCollins – Environetics Architecture - WINNER

Initiative IPG – Ted Moudis Associates
MetLife – Studios Architecture



Brookfield Place – Brookfield Property Partners - WINNER

Javits Center – FXFOWLE

HP Customer Experience – HLW International



Richard J. Haray, Senior Vice President, Corporate Services, Interpublic Group WINNER

Jody Brown, Senior Director, Global Sourcing – Real Estate & General Services , Thomson Reuters

Thomas P. Reilly, Vice President, MBA, MCR, SLCR, Federal Reserve Bank of New York



Kent Holliday, Principal, Consulting Services, Cresa - WINNER

Erin Downing, Senior Project Manager, Project Management Services, Avison Young

Kenny Rodriguez, Co-Founder, New Vista Space (NVS)



The Project of the Year award serves to honor excellence in design and execution. For the 2015 awards, projects have to be sufficiently completed between January 1, 2014 and December 31, 2014. Firms were asked to provide descriptions, research, photos, videos and plans, as well as professional testimony to convey the complexities and innovations of their design. Based on the submitted projects this year, two award categories, one for commercial interiors and one for redevelopment, were established.

The seven-member, project-awards committee consisted of seasoned industry professionals from numerous disciplines, including engineering, architecture, administrative and facilities management, among others. The committee judged the projects considering their creativity, complexity and ingenuity of design, efficient use of real estate, environmental sustainability, connectivity to brand and company mission.  Furthermore, they inquired about achievement of customer satisfaction, employee wellness and productivity improvement.  The committee toured all six of the short-listed projects. 


In the commercial interiors category, MetLife’s innovation floor overlooking Bryant Park, IPG’s Initiative space atop Herald Square and News Corp’s HarperCollins space located in lower Manhattan were selected as the top contenders. Each project met or exceeded the award criteria.

The winning project is HarperCollins’ beautiful installation located at 195 Broadway, in lower Manhattan. HarperCollins was founded in New York City in 1917 and is one of the world’s largest and oldest book publishers. The company relocated to downtown Manhattan in 2014 after spending more than 20 years in a 240,000 square foot midtown office building, on 20 floors of discontinuous space. The publishing company sought to achieve a greater level of cohesiveness and wished to convey a stronger brand identity through their office space. The company felt strongly that their new office design should consider the future of “work.” This meant making many major changes, including taking almost 70% of their employees out of private offices and moving them into an open, collaboratively planned environment. They also wished to maximize their real estate costs per square foot and to condense their space into 185,000 square feet of contiguous space over four floors. Overall, the goal was to increase worker efficiency and productivity, while embracing a more relaxed, residential atmosphere. The floors are designed into unique areas that are expressed with lighting, furniture arrangement and light filtering glass partitions. Every one of the spaces allows for daylight and impressive, book-jacket worthy Manhattan views. Custom workstations create a visual foundation for a user-defined “color palette” by the integrated display of current books. The overall effect is that the books are the star of the space.

A major feature of the design of HarperCollins’ New York Headquarters includes an industrial monumental staircase that connects two of the four floors. Within the stairwell lives a custom, modular display system that unites artifacts from the company’s history as well as current publications from the many global locations of HarperCollins. The effect is eye-catching, imaginative, cohesive and beautiful. Most importantly, the display unifies the space in a way that is true to the vision that HarperCollins set forth to create. 


In the Redevelopment Category, The Jacob J. Javits Center on Manhattan’s far west side, HP’s Innovation Lab adjacent to the High Line in West Chelsea and Brookfield Place situated west of the World Trade Center Redevelopment site.

The winner in this category is Brookfield Property Partners’ Brookfield Place. The World Financial Center underwent a $250 million+ renovation and expansion in conjunction with the construction of a new east-west passageway which now links it with the World Trade Center buildings, transportation hub and memorial. The developer’s goal was to connect and unify the World Financial Center with the World Trade Center. This goal was achieved in part by recreating and reorienting the complex’s façade to make it more inviting and open. Following the expansion, the entire World Financial Center complex was renamed Brookfield Place.

Available space in the lower floors of the office towers of the World Financial Center have undergone major conversions and expansion to accommodate new retail including handpicked food purveyors, which have created an unsurpassed New York City food destination, including Dig Inn, Chop’t, Blue Ribbon Sushi, Black Seed Bagel and Little Muenster. A European-style marketplace with a dining terrace, Le District, has opened in grand style, as well.  The shopping experience at Brookfield Place is led by high-end fashion, including a new 300,000 square foot Saks Fifth Avenue department store, Hermès, Salvatore Ferragamo, Fendi, Bottega Veneta, Burberry, DVF, Gucci and Prada, among many other flagship brands. Other refined shops and amenities have been brought into the fold, including Michael Kors, Bonobos, Vilebrequin, Lululemon, Equinox, the Institute of Culinary Education and valet parking. Multinational corporations, such as Hudson’s Bay Company, Jones Day, Bank of New York Mellon and Time Inc., have completed the leasing of prime space at the property.

Today, Brookfield Place is the pinnacle of revitalization and excitement in redevelopment, but as recently as 2013, space was at a staggering 41% vacancy. With hard work and ingenuity, tenant attraction has increased to a vacancy rate of below 5% due to the conglomeration of new properties and unsurpassed access to transportation. Brookfield Place was developed as a catalyst to integrate and drive development in the Battery Park City area, as well as to provide a lifestyle of convenience for people who work and live in the area.


The winner of CoreNet NYC’s 2015 CRE of the Year award is Richard J. Haray. Richard J. Haray is Senior Vice President, Corporate Services of the Interpublic Group (NYSE: IPG), one of the world's leading organizations of advertising agencies and marketing services companies with over 450 offices in 120 countries worldwide. Mr. Haray began his tenure at Interpublic in 1996 overseeing real estate and insurance. He played a key role in centralizing this function and getting Interpublic on a path to better service and significant cost savings. In October 2005, Mr. Haray took on the additional responsibility of corporate-wide procurement efforts, including travel. From 1992 to 1996, Mr. Haray was a Vice President and Lease Counsel of Rockefeller Center Management Corporation.  Prior to Rockefeller Group, he held positions at both Shearman and Sterling and Willkie Farr & Gallagher as a Real Estate Associate. He is a lifelong resident of New York and currently sits on the board of the Bryant Park Management Corporation, Regional Plan Association and Fordham University President’s Council.  Mr. Haray actively works on behalf of several local charities, including the St. Francis Food Pantries, and scholarship foundations benefiting Fordham and St. John’s Universities. Mr. Haray received his B.A. from St. John’s University and his J.D. Degree from St. John’s University School of Law, where he served as Editor-in-Chief of the Law Review.


The winner of the 2015 Service Provider of the Year award is Kent Holiday. Mr. Holliday brings more than 20 years of experience as a planner and strategist to the Cresa Consulting Services Group. He has focused on balancing real estate and facilities strategies with the objectives of corporations, universities and government institutions. Mr. Holliday has provided consulting expertise to clients with a complex mix of facility types and real estate options. One of Kent’s specialties is identifying what is measurable and how to use that data to improve the way his clients do business.  His background in architecture paired with his understanding of data helps him provide quantitative results for all of his clients. Kent volunteers his time for the Consistory (Board of Directors) for the Collegiate Churches of New York, five unique New York City ministries in five distinct neighborhoods. All unified in social justice, affirmation, and spiritual growth.


Real Estate In Bliss While GDP A Miss

According to Forbes, signs may show slowing overall economic growth, but CRE is on an upward path. This year has seen strong and consistent leasing demand for industrial real estate, low vacancy rates for office buildings and rising equity and debt investment in retail. Learn more here,



CoreNet NYC 2016 New Year's Party

2016 is just around the corner and so is our annual New Year's party at the Rainbow Room! If you haven't already registered, you can register here, Hope to see everyone on January 7, 2016!


CoreNet NYC Hosts "The Power of Place: Exploring the Intersection of Sustainability and Workplace"

Over 50 industry leaders and CoreNet NYC members attended the sold-out presentation led by Mark Stefurak from Steelcase, to learn about the rapidly growing mobile workforce, the impact this trend is having on company growth and revenue and the six dimensions of employee well-being.


CoreNet Global NYC Chapter's Dino Piccini Becomes a Partner of Transwestern

Congratulations to CoreNet NYC Treasurer Dino Piccini on becoming partner of Transwestern's NY Office Tenant Advisory Services platform! Read the full story here 


Downtown Brooklyn's First New Office Tower in More than a Decade will Rise

This 400,000-square-foot commercial office tower at 420 Albee Square will be the first ground-up commercial project in downtown Brooklyn since the area was rezoned in 2004. Read more, here.

The Hudson Yards Hustle

What do Neiman Marcus, L’Oreal USA and Time Warner all have in common? They are three of many high-end and internationally recognized tenants moving into Hudson Yards this spring  via The Real Deal

8 Tech Trends that are Shaking Up the Real Estate Industry

How 3-D printers, bitcoin, virtual reality and other new technology are shaking up the real estate industry

Top 10 Trends Influencing Workplace Design

At any given time, about one-third of all knowledge workers in private and public sectors are working remotely. Only 30 to 40 percent of employees with assigned spaces are actually using them. Mobility is crucial to today’s workforce. In addition to their offices, employees are working in airplanes, in hotels, at client sites and at home. They need to be supported with technology and business processes that allow them to work effectively wherever they are. To learn more about how to create and maximize effective work space, Click here .


CoreNet NYC Hosts Discussion with Daymond John on Personal Success from FUBU to Shark Tank and Beyond on October 29

NEW YORK, NY—November 2, 2015— CoreNet Global New York City Chapter (CoreNet NYC) is pleased to announce that it hosted a special program featuring Daymond John entitled, “Daymond John’s Lessons Learned—Hard Won Insights into Business and Personal Success From FUBU to Shark Tank and Beyond” on Thursday, October 29, 2015 at the W Union Square in New York City.

Over 150 prominent corporate real estate professionals attended this sold out program where Daymond John, the founder, president and CEO of FUBU, the American clothing and hip hop apparel company, investor on ABC’s hit television show Shark Tank and CEO of Shark Branding shared insights gained over two decades as a cutting-edge business strategist. Mr. John discussed his experience creating a global fashion powerhouse and significant lessons learned in business, real estate and personal success. He posed thought-provoking questions to rising business professions such as, “Life is a series of pitches and that is what we have to master. What is in it for the person you’re pitching?” He also advised entrepreneurs to use social media and brand integration to grow their businesses and stressed the importance of adapting to the current technological advances saying, “If you apply the fundamentals of business to technology, you’ll be unstoppable.”

About Daymond John

Daymond John is a young entrepreneur, an industry pioneer, a highly regarded marketing expert, and a man who has surpassed new heights of commercial and financial success. Over the last 20 years, Mr. John has evolved from one of the most successful fashion icons of his generation to one of the most sought after branding experts, business, and motivational speakers in the country.

Mr. John’s creative vision and strong knowledge of the marketplace helped him create one of the most iconic fashion brands in recent years. FUBU, standing for “For Us By Us,” represented a lifestyle that was neglected by other clothing companies. Realizing this need in the marketplace, Mr. John created the untapped urban apparel space and laid the groundwork for other companies to compete in this newly established market.


Ellen Albert Featured in The Leader

Our very own chapter member, Ellen Albert, is featured in the latest issue of The Leader! Read more about her thoughts on 'real estate planning for today's reality' and her experience with real estate planning for Viacom on page 14.

 Displaying corenet insta.jpg

Industry News

Local artist and World Trace Center tenants secretly document progress being made at the World Trade Center reconstruction site. Read more here:

Six CoreNet NYC Members Were Featured Attendees at Trascent Management Consulting's 2015 Corporate Real Estate & Facilities Management Americas Conference 

NEW YORK, NY—October 15, 2015CoreNet Global New York City chapter (CoreNet NYC) is pleased to announce that six members were represented at the 12th Annual Corporate Real Estate & Facilities Management Americas Conference at Thomson Reuters Headquarters, New York City, Tuesday, September 29 to Wednesday, September 30, 2015.

This premier industry event brought leadership, market intelligence, best practices, and forward trends to a "by invitation-only" select group of top Corporate Real Estate (CRE), Facilities Management (FM), and Sourcing Executives. This year's event was attended by 30 leading global corporations representing revenues of over $1.2 Trillion. Six business executives who were invited to this year’s conference are members of the CoreNet NYC chapter, including Jody Brown, Senior Sourcing Director at Thomson Reuters, who was also a speaker at the event. Brown currently holds a leadership role in CoreNet NYC as the Program Committee Chair.

Other CoreNet NYC attendees included: Keith Cheatham, Vice President of Risk Management at Comcast Corporation and Senior Vice President of Corporate Real Estate at NBCUniversal Enterprise, Inc.; Bill Concannon, CEO of Global Workplace Solutions at CBRE who was one of four executives on a discussion panel at the conference; Steve Lefkowitz, Vice President of Global Facilities Management at Time Warner Inc.; Laks Natarajan, Chief Procurement Officer at Marsh & McLennan; and Pay Wu, Vice President of Global Business Services at American Express, who previously served as Chair on the CoreNet NYC Board of Directors and is now an Advisor. 


CoreNet NYC Annual Meeting, Chapter Awards and Volunteer Appreciation Reception

Thank you to all of our members and sponsors who came out on Wednesday, July 22nd to support the Chapter at its annual meeting, awards ceremony and volunteer appreciation reception. Over 150 guests from the corporate real estate industry gathered to hear Global and Chapter Leadership provide a “State of the Chapter” address.

Following the address, Lauren Nanna of General Atlantic and Vice President of CoreNet NYC introduced the awards ceremony. Vito Bacarella of UBS Financial Services, Inc. presented the Chapter Corporate Real Estate of the Year nominees (Jody Brown, Senior Director, Global Sourcing-Real Estate & General Services at Thomson Reuters; Thomas P. Reilly, Vice President, MBA, MCR, SLCR at Federal Reserve Bank of New York) and announced winner: Richard R. Haray, Senior Vice President, Corporate Services at Interpublic Group. Hillary Walter, Vice Chair of Public Relations for CoreNet NYC presented the Chapter Service Provider of the Year nominees (Erin Downing, Senior Project Manager, Project Management Services at Avison Young; Kenny Rodriguez, Co-Founder of New Vista Space (NVS)) and announced winner: Kent Holliday, Principal, Consulting Services at Cresa. Suzanne Carlson of NBBJ presented the Chapter 2015 Commercial Interiors Project of the Year Nominees (Initiative | IPG; MetLife) and announced winner: HarperCollins Publishers as well as the 2015 Redevelopment Project of the Year nominees (Hewlett Packard Customer Experience Center; Javits Center) and announced winner: Brookfield Place.

To end the presentations for the evening, Jason Aster of KBA Lease Services and Counsel for CoreNet NYC recognized fifteen CoreNet NYC Committee Volunteer Stars who devote countless hours to improving our chapter and enhancing membership experience.

To view photos from this special event, please click here.


Where Real Estate and Workplace Strategies Align (or Not?)


By Fran Ferrone, Senior Associate, Director of Workplace Innovation, Mancini Duffy

Despite the well-known industry fact that (after employee costs) corporate real estate is the second largest expense to an organization, executives continue to leave both money and opportunity on the table by failing to take a broader, more inclusive approach to portfolio and workplace planning. This topic was the focus of a panel discussion held last month at the new A&E Networks headquarters in New York, and sponsored by the Strategy and Portfolio Planning (SPP) Committee of the CoreNet New York Chapter. The evening’s discussion centered around the results of SPP’s recent survey exploring how technology, mobility and sustainability align in the service of creating dynamic and relevant portfolio and workplace strategies. Panelists Allyson Hajdu of Equifax, Brian Schwagerl of BGS Advisory Services and Denise Strong of A&E Networks (also the evening’s host) were moderated in turn by SPP Committee members Christine Barber, Gensler; Courtney Smith, JLL; Justin Mardex, Ted Moudis; Richard Podos, Lance LLC and myself.

 The SPP Survey

The genesis of the SPP Survey was the Committee’s 2014 Round Table on the multiple aspects of portfolio planning, in which it became evident that 1) both qualitative and quantitative metrics are essential to effective planning, and 2) that the softer, qualitative measures (like those pertaining to attraction, retention and productivity) can indeed have huge impacts on a company’s profitability and growth. Respondents were comprised of forty four C-Suite and Executive level real estate and workplace decision-makers drawn from CoreNet NYC Chapter membership and representing a broad host of industries, primarily finance, insurance, consulting and media. Most were responsible for portfolios of significant size and scope – one-third managed portfolios of five million square feet or greater, while nearly a quarter managed portfolios in the two million to five million square foot range.  In addition, SPP survey findings echo the results of recent reports from research giants such as Gartner (1) and Forrester, the latter reporting in recent research commissioned by JLL that only 28% of CRE executives currently consider themselves data centric. (2)

 Survey Findings

•The larger the organization the less integrated the real estate and workplace teams. This presents an added challenge to the combined 80% of respondents who reported plans to expand their portfolios in the US, Latin America and Asia over the next 12-18 months.

•Despite emphasis on the importance of building operational costs as it pertains to sustainability only 24% of respondents said their company currently uses technology to track building performance and resource consumption.

•Although 88% said that the company’s technology strategy was linked to employee productivity and 64% said they track sick days, only 36% use technology to track employee turnover and downtime.  

 Allyson Hajdu kicked off the discussion of how to align real estate and workplace by noting that because they inform each other, it’s important to have a flexible and inclusive process. Panelists agreed that the key to developing that flexibility is creating relationships with the businesses that enable you to understand how different entities within an organization work. Brian Schwagerl added that it’s incumbent upon real estate and workplace professionals to prove their value to the enterprise, stressing the importance of good listening and leadership skills in doing so.

 In terms of managing growth, Brian went on to say that regardless of the size of the portfolio, growth and change can best be managed with the help of service providers acting as extensions of the real estate team, along with a combination of hi-tech/low tech approaches - advanced technology and old fashioned “bed checks.” Additionally, emphasis was placed on the importance of bringing multiple disciplines together to review data regularly for the purpose of making better-informed decisions.

 On the topic of resiliency, the panel was asked about the interplay between sustainability and mobility initiatives and their ability to support resiliency. All agreed that while both are largely culture-driven, sustainability and mobility initiatives must be led from the top in order to succeed. Audience member, Chip Logan of BNY Mellon then addressed the panel, suggesting that the aftermath of Super Storm Sandy proved a need for resiliency around multiple, potential failure points in order to ensure business continuity.

 The evening’s final topic, performance metrics, was framed by Denise Strong in saying “ultimately, our role is to understand the voice of the customer.” Yet SPP’s survey results belied this approach, showing an emphasis on operational costs as key performance indicators. This suggests room for improvement might include balancing quantitative data with more qualitative human factors as future measures of success. Interestingly, this emphasis on quantitative measures -- at the expense or exclusion of qualitative metrics -- was a similar theme in last year’s Round Table. Which, borrowing from current popular culture, begs the question: If the Oscars can expand the best picture category from five to ten entries, might it not be time for portfolio strategy & planning to update its scorecard as well?

Key Takeaways

1) Despite the proliferation of technology, executives are still not taking full advantage of the multiple data sources available.

2) Performance metrics are still focused more on bricks and mortar and less on talent attraction, retention and productivity measures that truly impact profitability and growth.

3) As suggested by Dr. W. Edward Deming, the father of modern quality management, you cannot improve what you cannot measure, meaning that better-informed portfolio and workplace decisions will come from a more inclusive process that combines high and low tech sources into a holistic data set.   


(1) “The forces of mobility, information, the cloud and social collaboration are converging to create a consumer-driven ecosystem filled with emerging business opportunities and paradigm shifts. This convergence continues to have major implications for business and technology leaders delivering modern internal- and external-facing solutions. Indeed, this set of converging and mutually reinforcing forces is redefining the delivery not just of IT, but of business functionality across the enterprise. It has become a core driving force of rapid (r)evolution in corporate real estate (CRE) management and FM — the IWMS market — as well.” Magic Quadrant for Integrated Workplace Management Systems. Gartner, June 26 2014.

(2) "Mind The Data Gap: Aspiration vs. Reality In Corporate Real Estate," A Forrester study on the adoption of data analytics in corporate real estate commissioned by JLL. June 2014


Cyber Security: An Interview with Former New York City Police Commissioner, Ray Kelly 

In the dynamic environment of cyber security, companies need to be proactive, rather than reactive.

Recently, we had the opportunity to discuss cyber security with an expert, former New York City Police   Commissioner Ray Kelly, who is president of Cushman & Wakefield’s Risk Management Services. Once the city’s longest-serving police commissioner, having served two terms under different mayors, David Dinkins and Michael Bloomberg, he now heads the first comprehensive risk management service of its kind in the real estate industry.

Mr. Kelly’s tenure as Police Commissioner included the follow-up to 9/11 and Hurricane Sandy. He has served as a consultant and commentator to ABC News on law enforcement issues, and he is currently writing a book about his decades of public service.

During his first term as NYC Police Commissioner (1992-1994), cyber security was “barely a blip on the radar screen,” according to Mr. Kelly. The NYPD had rudimentary computer systems and few investigators who were tech savvy. His second term as Commissioner (2002-2013) saw a sea change in the importance of cy- ber security. As the NYPD itself be- came more sophisticated in its use of technology, it became a bigger target for cyber-attacks. The department logged tens of thousands of intrusion attempts each day.

“We also needed to develop investigative expertise in order to respond to the escalating number and types of cyber-crimes,” said Mr. Kelly. Today, cyber-threats come from many directions: state actors, criminal groups, corporate espionage, terrorists and hacktivists. The risks for corpora- tions are enormous. A sophisticated cyber-attack can result in crippling financial losses, extensive legal liability and long-lasting reputational damage. For the real estate industry, the loss of confidential client data is probably the dominant cyber- risk. Other pro- fessional and financial services firms face similar risks. “Trust is a key element of our client relationships,” said Mr. Kelly. “If sensitive client data is compromised, that trust is also com- promised.”

Boards have come to realize the sig- nificance of these risks and of their potential liability if they fail to take prudent measures for data protection. One way for boards to mitigate their risk is to commission independent risk assessments by qualified outside experts.

Security breaches at corporations like Sony, JPMorgan Chase, Home Depot, and Target, sent shock waves through the American psyche. Mr. Kelly point- ed to lessons learned from these high profile breaches. “One key lesson is that cyber security is about more than the protection of your own network,” he said. Major vulnerabilities can ex- ist through the way networks connect with vendors and other third party providers. “A small plumbing company’s computer system may not seem like much of a target,” said Mr. Kelly, “but if it links to your system, its importance has increased exponentially.” The data security chain is only as strong as its weakest link.

And the perpetrators are everywhere.
“We see large numbers of attacks coming from China, Russia and Eastern Europe, Brazil, Nigeria and Vietnam,” said Mr. Kelly. In most cases, apprehending suspects in these countries is unrealistic. Robust defenses and a well-trained workforce present a better option. Social engineering remains a productive option for cyber criminals. When one of your employees clicks on a suspect attachment in a phishing campaign and malware is installed, your investment in network defenses has been undermined.

Staying ahead of security as real estate firms expand globally is an- other challenge, though Mr. Kelly doesn’t believe that cyber-risks will derail global expansion. “Certainly there are some countries that present challenging cyber-environments for business, but it would be a rare case where firms decide to take a pass on growth opportunities,” he said. The solution according to Mr.  Kelly lies in conducting comprehensive risk assessments in advance of expansion and adopting reasonable mitigation measures that can pave the way to successful growth.

The risks of intellectual property theft can be reduced significantly by requiring a careful risk assessment of both physical security and informa- tion security. “Effective access control measures for office spaces need to be coupled with policies and procedures designed to make employees aware of their obligation to safeguard sensitive information,” Mr. Kelly said. “Matters of convenience (e.g. use of thumb drives and laptops with remote access) need to be weighed against their vulnerability to loss or theft. Terminated employees sometimes pose a threat to a firm’s intellectual property if they are able to download and export large amounts of data before their departure. Once risks are identified, prudent mitigation measures should be put in place.”

Going forward, improving security requires private companies to share intelligence, information on best practices and join together with government partners in various security  initiatives.

That’s why, as Police  Commissioner, Mr. Kelly established the Lower Manhattan Security Initiative. LMSI brings security personnel from Wall Street area firms together with NYPD counterterrorism officers in an area coordination center designed to share information and monitor conditions. Similarly, he began the NYPD Shield organization that brings private security leaders together with the NYPD in a detailed information and intelligence sharing forum. The Real Estate ISAC (Information Sharing and Analysis Center) is an excellent platform for disseminating important security information and often uses NYPD Shield as a source.

“CoreNet is an ideal forum for commercial real estate professionals to collaborate on security best practices. As the leading professional organization in the field, it has the credibility and reach to make a real difference in rais- ing the bar on security standards and practices,” Mr. Kelly said.

Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly is President of Risk Management Services at Cushman & Wakefield, where he focuses on helping clients identify potential vulnerabilities, as well as prepare for and manage risk across a number of critical areas. These include physical and cyber security intelligence, crisis management, due diligence/site selection, and emergency preparedness.


Tech Tips

By Sonya Verny, BDO, USA LLP and Carlie Hozza, Innovant, Newsletter Committee Members

Technology is a part of our everyday life. Whether we are sending an email, making a phone call or playing Candy Crush on the train, our technology is a constant presence in our day-to-day activities. By now you know that the Nigerian Prince emailing you is a scam,  but did you know you can make your information vulnerable by responding to a text or returning a call? The following tips are for protecting your private information while using technology.

Device Safety Always have password protection for your devices. Finger recognition is best, but PINs and swiped patterns are also options. Remember that it is possible to read PINs and swipes through phone smudges (grease patterns left by your fingers on the screen). Also, enable an automatic lock for when you haven’t used your device for a few minutes. • Understand your device’s privacy and security settings and which programs have access to your information. Data from the sites you visit, or even your location, can be included in the information you are allowing. • Not sure who sent you that text? Err on the side of caution and ignore it. Spam and phishing through text is becoming more prevalent. • Always keep your device software updated. System updates fix bugs and patch security gaps. • Only download apps from reputable developers and check the comment section for positive reviews. Malware can be installed through apps, but it is less likely when coming from well-known sources. • Back up your information frequently. Understand that backup systems, like iCloud, can do this automatically. However it also may back up information and images that you’d rather not. Internet Safety Turn off Wi-Fi and Bluetooth when not in use (bonus, it extends battery life). • Avoid submitting personal information over public Wi-Fi. Public Wi-Fi is not as secure, and people can capture your information. • Remember that an email can last forever. The Sony security breech not only com- promised employees’ identity, it also revealed offensive emails from executives. Think twice before sending emails that speak ill of others; it could come back to haunt you.   • Sites with and https:// have increased security compared to http:// • Beware of links and attachments. Do not open unless you know what they are, or were expecting specific information. Viruses spread by messaging the infected user’s contacts. Be cautious of short emails that include links or attachments. If someone hasn’t used your name and hasn’t signed it with their signature, the email might contain a virus. • Encrypt sensitive data. File encryption is easier now than ever, with free software available through Microsoft Windows and Apple Mac OSX. Social Media Safety Privacy and security set- tings exist for a reason. Learn about and use the pri- vacy and security settings on social networks. They help you control who sees what you post and manage your online experience in a posi- tive way. • Protect your reputation on social networks. What you post online stays online. Think twice before posting pictures you wouldn’t want your parents or future employers to see. Recent research found that 70% of job recruiters rejected candidates based on information they found online.

•Your online reputation can be a good thing: Research also found that recruiters respond to a strong, positive personal brand online. So show your smarts, thoughtfulness, and mas- tery of the environment.

•Keep personal info personal. Be cautious about the person- al information you provide on social networking sites. The more information you post, such as complete date of birth or address, the easier it may be for someone to steal your identi- ty, access your data, or commit other crimes such as stalking.

Know and manage your friends. Social networks can be used for a variety of purposes. Some of the fun is creating a large pool of friends from many aspects of your life. That doesn’t mean all friends are created equal. Use tools to man- age the information you share with friends in different groups or even have multiple online pages. If you’re trying to create
a public persona as a blogger or expert, create an open pro- file or a “fan” page that encourages broad participation and limits personal information. Use your personal profile to keep your real friends (the ones you know and trust) in touch with your daily life.

Be honest if you’re uncomfortable. If a friend posts some- thing about you that makes you uncomfortable or is inappro- priate, let them know. Likewise, stay open-minded if a friend approaches you because something you’ve posted makes him or her uncomfortable. People have different tolerances for how much the world knows about them. Respect those dif- ferences.

Know what action to take. If someone is harassing or threatening you, remove them from your friends list, block them, and report them to the site administrator.

Protect Yourself With These Tips:
Own your online pres- ence. When applicable, set the privacy and secu- rity settings on websites to your comfort level for information sharing. It’s ok to limit how you share information.

Make passwords long and strong. Combine capital and lowercase letters with num- bers and symbols to create a more secure password.

Unique account, unique password. Use separate passwords for every account helps to thwart cybercriminals.

Post only about others as you have them post about you.


Hacker Protection 101:
Interview with Adam Roth, VP of Technology at Virsig

 by Alexandra Betesh, KBA Lease Services, Newsletter Committee

How safe are we from hackers? Will the next breach occur in our industry? What about our personal information, is it safe on the web? New cyber threats are constantly emerging as technology changes at an incredibly rapid pace. Can the experts protect us?

“Everyone has their own definition of cyber security” says Adam Roth, the VP of Technology at a New York City-based networked technology and systems integrator called Virsig. To Roth, it’s “securing the connections that lead to your virtual world.” Since he was a kid, Roth has been fascinated by security. He was glued to movies like War Games, in which a whiz kid hacks his way into the government computer systems and accidentally starts a war.” Now with over 30 years of experience, Roth is an expert in physical and cyber security. He holds licenses in armed and unarmed security, and has over 50 individual certifications.

But, the risks are compounding. Roth explains, “Over the past 15 years, more people have access to the internet than ever before. The pipes or bandwidths are larger, and it is easier to have anonymity as a hacker.” With the ubiquity of mobile devices, people make less
of an effort to secure their smart phones than they do their computers. Roth asks, “Do you lock your cell phone? A lot of people don’t.” A hacker can send you a malicious email containing a link that accesses your mobile device and exposes your personal information. Massive amounts of data can be stolen relatively easily. With a fake account and coffee-shop internet, a hacker becomes anonymous.

As a cyber-security expert, Roth categorizes both the major types of hacking and their underlying motiva- tions. Generally, hacking consists of breaking into servers or workstations, breaking through net- work devices (firewall switches and routers), or sending out malicious code. Some of this code, often known as ‘kiddie scripts’, can be purchased relatively easily on the black market. It leaves vulnerabilities open to exploitation and lets any regular person become a hacker. To combat the cyber criminals, it is important to try to understand how they think. Their motivations behind hacking can typically be categorized as:

White Hat Hacker
Someone who wants to show a big organization that they are not 100% safe. Usually a white hat hacker  will  directly communicate with an organization, and will, in some cases, be commissioned to identify the organization’s infrastructure  weaknesses.

Grey Hat Hacker
Someone who wants to prove something. They often times can do damage to a network.
Black Hat Hacker
Someone who hacks with malevolent intent. These people can hold data for ransom, or they can be politically motivated. Governments employ this type of hacking as a part of warfare.

Can cyber-security firms adequately protect against these threats? Roth opines, “Cyber security companies have more limitations on them, as they have to act within the bounds of the laws. They have to be worried about the consequences on their actions.” Conversely, a lot of money has been spent by large organizations to hire some of the best hackers in the world and convert them into employees. These organizations use the knowledge of these hackers-for-hire to protect themselves. To Roth, cyber security includes both elements of physical security, which limits access to hardware (like modems or servers) that connects to your network, as well as online security, which prevents people from exploiting the internet.

As a first step, you should protect your basic data from being collected. A hacker  must  start  with a piece of information about you or your organization. Hackers need a target system, a target IP, a person to exploit. “It is imperative   that  companies everywhere invest in educating their employees so that they know how to secure their data,” Roth says. For example, someone may call an administrative assistant, attempting to collect a name or email address. Although they may only give out their own email, a hacker, who can access the administrative assistant’s system, effectively gains access to the boss’s information as well. Companies should mandate that their administrative assistants collect the name and information of the caller. As a general rule, do not give out private information.

For hardware investments, companies should buy the right equipment for the right reasons. Roth warns, “You do  not always need the most expensive and sophisticated system available.  If you do not know how to secure a very sophisticated system, you will leave holes open and not even realize it.” For example, many people use a Universal Plug and Play (UPnP) router, without realizing that it actually puts your data on the internet, making your computer accessible and vulnerable. Research the right device. Spend your money wisely. Do not buy an incredibly powerful server when you do not need it.”

Firms should employ antivirus, anti-malware, and patch management on end-user devices. Many companies continue to use legacy software or hardware, and security patches are used to protect these relatively antiquated devices from new methods of sabotage. Roth advises, “As a best practice, when an operating system is retired, you should stop using it. If you have a lot of custom code written on these servers, then find the right security patches for your operating system. There are plenty of organizations that can tell you which patches are good and which are bad.” For example, if you have an older iPhone and you are being asked to upgrade the operating system on it, sometimes it may cause unanticipated problems. Sometimes, the new operating system may cause  a quicker drain on your battery. This is an example of a poor patch management for a legacy device.

Finally, if something is not working properly, do not assume that it has been hacked. Disconnect the server and observe its behavior of- fline. Seek a professional to evaluate what happened. A hacker wants to get in, get your information, cover their tracks, and get out. If you think something was hacked, don’t get overwhelmed. Find the right people for the task.

Adam Roth has been working for Virsig since inception, only a few years ago. Virsig was started by 4 incredibly diverse and experienced individuals – one of whom is a former U.S. Navy SEAL. These individuals built an organization that is unique, leveraging their incredible backgrounds to consult for the government and Fortune 500 companies alike. They help Roththeir clients monitor and secure their network and teach best practices on how to keep their data secure. Virsig integrates both physical security and logical security where appropriate, keeping their clients’ data safe and secure so that they can have peace of mind.

Landmarked - Federal Reserve Bank of New York

 by Thomas Reilly, Newsletter Committee

Located between the steel and glass skyscrapers of Manhattan’s financial district, the 22-story Federal Reserve Bank of New  York  (New  York Fed) is distinctive for its palazzo design, reminiscent of the Italian Renaissance period. The building, completed in 1924, was designed to express strength, stability and security and to inspire confidence in the newly created Federal Reserve System. Ninety years later, the limestone and sandstone headquarters of the New York Fed remains an imposing and stunning architectural feat.

The building was  designed by York and Sawyer, which won a competition against six competing firms in 1921. Though architecturally out of sync with its time, Philip Sawyer’s design was commended for its simplicity, economy, and restraint. His design popularized an architectural style for banks that was repeated throughout the country.

Following the architectural competition, Samuel Yellin, an ambitious and talented  metal  worker,  approached York and Sawyer with sketches of ornamental, but functional, ironwork to complement  their conservative concept. The architects accepted the Polish-American artisan’s bid. Although Yellin was proficient in several styles, the designer employed an Italian technique consistent with the concept of the principal architect, Philip  Sawyer. Many  of  Sawyer’s  ideas  were  borrowed  from Florentine palaces that had influenced him while studying in Italy. Specifically, the New York Fed’s monumental size suggests the Pitti Palazzo, while the structure’s façade molding recalls the Vecchio Palazzo, and the building’s stonework, arches and ironwork reflect the Strozzi Palazzo.

By mid-1923, the stone  façade was in place. Though the period favored structures of uniform color, Sawyer elected to employ a multi-colored stone façade, which combined sections of Indiana limestone with those of Ohio sandstone. Sawyer’s reasoned that such a polychromatic facing would lend character to the building’s Renaissance style and break up the monotony of its walls, which are basically void of ornamentation. The decision was also economical as odd lots of unmatched stone were pur- chased for the job at a substantial discount. When completed in 1924, the New York Fed was the largest bank structure in the world, filling almost the entire block.

Landmark Status
The building was designated a New York   City  Landmark  in  1965,   and was listed on the State and National Registry of  Historic Places in  1980. Its beautiful rusticated ashlar facade with alternating blocks of limestone and sandstone is unique in New York City, and its monumentality and  solidity,  combined  with  architectural detail, convey an air of  permanence and strength. Besides making note of its impressive external architectural design and ornamental features, the commission drew attention to the grand entrance hall, vaulted ceilings, stone walls and ornamental ironwork in the public spaces of the Bank.

Recently,  the  New  York  Fed undertook a multi-year effort to restore and modernize the building, the first major renovation since the 1930s. The restoration provided necessary up- grades to the building infrastructure, addressed safety concerns (including asbestos abatement, fire alarm and sprinkler enhancements and ventilation systems), and upgraded the building’s technology and electrical systems to ensure proper modern-day bank business and operational efficiency.

The floor-by-floor modernization process was aimed at making the building more functional, safe and flexible. The floors were reconfigured and upgraded to include new electrical, telecommunication, data, cable, fire alarm, sprinkler, elevator, air conditioning and ventilation systems, some of which were necessary improvements from the antiquated  systems that dated from the 1930s. However, throughout the process, the  project team attempted to retain as much of the original design as possible.     Existing lighting fixtures and rare  artwork, original to  the building, were removed, refurbished, and reinstalled. Also, in an effort to balance  historic preservation with modernized and environmentally-friendly   facilities,  the New York Fed restored existing wood doors, paneling, and trim work.

University & External Relations Committee Sends Students to CoreNet Global ERS

 by Ashley Rigby, Education Specialist, Herman Miller, Inc.

As a millennial and young professional, I have had the opportunity to network with and learn from my peers, as well as with more seasoned professionals, since joining CoreNet Global nearly 8 years ago. In addition to the Young Leaders Community, the organization continues to seek out additional ways to raise awareness of the CRE industry and share how it’s positioned to support student and young professional members in a multitude of ways.

This past winter, a friend, business colleague and fellow CoreNet Global member mentioned that I should consider joining the newly-formed University & External Relations Committee. Immediately, I reached out to the committee chairperson and asked to get involved.  CoreNet Global has made strengthening its relationships with academic institutions around the world a priority, and the University & External Relations Committee has been tasked with supporting that mission on a local level.  Geographically, we are fortunate.  New York City and the surrounding area is home to some of the most sought-after real estate programs both at the graduate and undergraduate level.

Over the past several months, the External & University Relations committee members have reached out to select local colleges and universities, raising awareness and sharing with them organizational benefits and programs available to young professionals interested in (or perhaps not even aware of) careers in corporate real estate. Benefits include reduced faculty and student membership rates, scholarships and sponsorships in addition exposure to potential mentors, employers and business partners. Oh, and of course, the endless opportunities for professional development are not to be overlooked.

The Academic Challenge was the first of our programs to support and promote. The Academic Challenge is a global competition created to attract students from all academic disciplines to tackle key challenges facing the corporate real estate profession, and those that are top of mind of CoreNet Global members. The competition closes at the end of July and it will be interesting to how students interpreted the complex challenge of improving a fictional corporate real estate portfolio and while positioning the organization for the greatest flexibility and success, all through the eyes of a CRE executive.   

Most recently, we had the privilege of hosting a small group of students at CoreNet Global’s Eastern Regional Symposium in early June at Georgetown University in Washington, DC. We received over 30 applications from notable graduate-level programs, including those at New York University, Columbia University and Cornell University. The applicant pool was incredibly talented and which made whittling the list down to seven sponsored students challenging. Ultimately, the students awarded were selected because of their deep interest in corporate real estate, professionalism and academic achievements.

Over the course the two-day conference we had the opportunity to learn about the students, their professional interests and academic programs in a way that is not feasible simply by reviewing ones resume or reading a cover letter. It’s hard to believe, but they were more impressive in person than their applications conveyed.

The conference kicked-off with the Young Leaders Forum which took place over a beautifully-catered breakfast in the iconic Cosmos Club. Following that, they took advantage of a tour of the developing Capital Riverfront and the educational and inspirational sessions and speakers that followed. A highlight of the experience was an unplanned, but requested group dinner at Ray’s The Steaks, suggested by sponsored student, Chada Ngamwajasat. Over dinner the students shared personal and professional stories and chatted excitedly about opportunities to stay connected with CoreNet Global and one another as their careers unfold. 

Following the event, Chada shared with me her thoughts on the Eastern Regional Symposium, her first CoreNet Global event, "I had the honor of being the only Sponsored Student representing NYU's Schack Institute of Real Estate at Corenet's Eastern Regional Symposium.  While attending my first ERS, I had the benefit of interacting with real estate executives both in a formal and informal setting.  Beyond the interactions that I had with leaders in the commercial real estate industry, I was also fortunate to connect with other Sponsored Students from Columbia University, Cornell, and Georgetown.  I am so grateful to CoreNet and everyone that I met at the ERS for an amazing experience."

CoreNet Global and the New York City Chapter are smart to stay connected with the next generation corporate real estate executives. The student sponsors that were selected to attend the Eastern Regional Symposium clearly demonstrate that the future of this industry is incredibly bright. 

Connected World: Tech Trends from 2015 Global Sourcing & Cloud Summit

 by Jill Zunshine, Corporate Real Estate, Procurement, Supply Chain, and Operations Executive

I was delighted to attend the June 16-17 Global Sourcing & Cloud Summit presented by The World BPO/ITO Forum ( at the New York Athletic Club in New York City. 

Here is my takeaway on the Tech Trends discussed at the Summit.  I call them “Connected World.”  I grouped them into 6 Mega-Trends: Cloud, Big Data, Mobile, Disruptive Innovation, Growing Risk, and The New IT. 

#1.  CLOUD

“Total Cloud Market Cap up 7X since 2008, from $25 billion to $180 billion.”

– Chris Barbin, CEO & Co-Founder, Appirio

The market is concentrated, with the Top 10 Public Cloud Companies having 75% of the market cap.  The Top 5 are, LinkedIn, Workday, ServiceNow, and NetSuite.  And, the Top 10 include 6 players who weren’t in the Top 10 in 2008: LinkedIn, Workday, ServiceNow, Veeva Systems, Medidata Solutions, and Proofpoint.

“Customization ≠ Cloud.”

– Charles Phillips, CEO, Infor

Cloud dislikes customization.  It's much easier to move applications to the cloud when they aren't customized.


“IoT is here: 7.5 billion mobile connections, more than the number of people in the world.”  

– Mark Weatherford, Principal, The Chertoff Group; First Deputy Under Secretary for Cybersecurity, U.S.

Department of Homeland Security

What is 7,527,562,797?  It’s the number of mobile connections in the world at the beginning of this week, including Machine to Machine (M2M).  Watch the number grow in real-time at GSMA Intelligence (  That’s more than the number of people in the world, now approaching 7.3 billion.  To watch the world population grow in real-time, go to the U.S. Census Bureau (

“Data is the new oil.”

– L.N. Balaji, President, ITC Infotech (USA) Inc.

Big Data is a precious resource.  It fuels decision-making.  And, it has an economic value.


“Welcome to the era of the ‘ODD Millennials,’ On Demand Digital.”

– Chris Barbin, CEO & Co-Founder, Appirio

“Millennials love devices, e-commerce, online media, games, and wearables.”  Verhage, Julie (2015, May 22).  Bank of America: Here Are Eight Ways to Profit From Millennials.  Bloomberg Business.  Retrieved from

And, the ODD Millennials demand more and more minutes each day:


“With the ‘Uber for talent,’ we’re harnessing the emerging global talent cloud.”

– Matt Swanson, Managing Partner, Silicon Valley Software Group

What will 2025 look like?  A McKinsey Global Institute report examines “the current state of employment and the impact these digital platforms could have:” 

Online talent platforms could add $2.7 trillion, or 2%, to global GDP by 2025, while increasing employment by 72 million full-time-equivalent positions.

Up to 540 million people could benefit from online talent platforms by 2025.

Adoption of these platforms could increase the output of companies by up to 9% and reduce the cost of recruiting talent and of human resources generally by as much as 7%.

James Manyika, Susan Lund, Kelsey Robinson, John Valentino, and Richard Dobbs (2015, June).  A labor market that works: Connecting talent with opportunity in the digital age.  McKinsey Global Institute.  Retrieved from

“A photo of Tomorrow's call center, after robotic process automation.”

– Cliff Justice, Partner and U.S. Leader, Shared Services and Outsourcing Advisory, KPMG LLP


“Risk = Threat x Vulnerability x Consequence.” 

– Jim Noble, Summit Chairman; Former CIO of GM, AOL Time Warner, Merrill Lynch, BP, & Philip Morris

Risk can be thought of as an equation, where Risk is equal to the Threat, times your Vulnerability to the threat, times the Consequence if the threat became a reality.  To reduce Risk, reduce all three variables in the risk equation.

“The average Fortune 500 Company has 700 cloud applications, and IT is aware of 100.”

– Alan Guibord, Co-Founder & President, Cyber Security Integrators, LLC


“CIO: Chief Executive, Salesperson, Diplomat, Venture Capitalist, Product Manager, & Recruiter.”

– Jim Noble, Summit Chairman; Former CIO of GM, AOL Time Warner, Merrill Lynch, BP, & Philip Morris

A Chief Executive of your technology business supporting the demands of speed and agility.

A Salesperson engaging internal customers on their biggest challenges while attracting the best talent and suppliers.

A Diplomat interacting with Board Members as a trusted advisor to solicit their concerns and share your results.

A Venture Capitalist showcasing the “art of the possible” to internal customers with promising ideas.

A Product Manager assembling products through experimentation with customers and partners.

A Recruiter motivating and retaining the best talent.

  *             *             *

It was fun, any way you look at it.  I wanted to attend last year, but I couldn’t.  I’m glad I didn’t miss it this year.


CoreNet Global New York City Chapter Hosted Sold-Out Workshop: Perspective on Manhattan West

NEW YORK, NY—May 22, 2015—The New York City Chapter of CoreNet Global (CoreNet NYC) is pleased to announce that it hosted its sold-out Workshop: Perspective on Manhattan West at Brookfield Place.

Future Landlords and Tenants Gather at Sold-Out Workshop for Details on New Development
CoreNet NYC hosted its sold-out workshop entitled “Perspective on Manhattan West” that gave both prospective landlords and tenants an in-depth look into Brookfield’s Manhattan West development. Brookfield Property Partner presented details on the pending development and future plans for Manhattan West. Tenants who have committed to the project including R/GA and Skadden, Arps, Slate and Meagher & Flom LLP, also provided commentary on their hopes for the development and its future.

Manhattan West will be a 5,400,000 SF multi-use development by Brookfield Properties. The project will consist of two large office towers and two smaller residential towers with 1.5 acres of public park. The project is estimated to be completed in 2020.

<font "="" style="font-size: xx-large;"><font "="" style="letter-spacing: 0.200000002980232px; font-size: xx-large;"><font "="" color="#1377bb" style="color: rgb(19, 119, 187); letter-spacing: 0.200000002980232px; font-size: xx-large; line-height: 39.0400009155273px;">
Generations in the Balance

Baby Boomers…Generation X…Millennials. This unlikely trio of ages and values is competing and collaborating in today’s workplace. With divergent backgrounds and experiences, they meet daily in work spaces that are inherently comfortable for some and inherently awkward for others, but all must adapt.  Baby boomers, some still employed long past the traditional age of retirement, feel exposed with the loss of their private offices and cubicles. Generation Xers embrace flex time and long for employment that supports their team spirit. Millennials, raised on technology, thrive in collaborative work spaces but grouse about having to pay their dues to move up the corporate ladder.

Millennial speak: “Those baby boomers can’t keep up with technology.”  

Generation X speak: “We’re highly educated, and we have a new paradigm.  It’s not about the goal.  It’s about the team.”

Baby Boomer speak: “While younger workers bail, we understand economic cycles and have the wisdom to weather any storm.”

With these diverse mindsets, can consensus be reached?

We recently spoke with Suzanne Heidelberger, who is Senior Vice President of Global Real Estate and Workplace Enablement at American Express, about the role real estate plays in helping the generations coexist and thrive.  Heidelberger considers herself “a Generation X with a Baby Boomer soul.”  She said, “All three generations need to have a voice and contribute equally.”  When that happens, “solutions are robust, logical, and ultimately deliverable.”

The biggest difference in the three generational groups is technology.  “Baby boomers want to keep up with the Millennials,” Heidelberger said.  In terms of real estate challenges with burgeoning technology, she said, “It’s about managing expectations for technology and keeping up with the rate of change.  The organizations that are able to make the necessary investments in new technology have a competitive advantage.”

Statistics continue to support Baby Boomers’ predominance in the workforce, but while they’re working longer, they’re also reinventing themselves.  Boomers are acquiring new skills, and once they retire, seeking part-time employment.  It’s an interesting juxtaposition that as Baby Boomers approach retirement, “they start acting more like Millennials,” according to Heidelberger.

But let’s not skip over the Gen Xers.  While not nearly as large a demographic as Baby Boomers, they are older, more experienced, and, based on where they are in their careers, more likely than Millennials to be transitioning into leadership positions in corporate America.  

Gen Xers’ adherence to a team approach supports productivity according to Heidelberger because “people are allowed to work in ways and in spaces that make the most sense to them.”  Translating that need to real estate, “We look at providing spaces where people can be the most productive, which leads to more engaged employees and a better return on property investment.” 

A recent survey of 4,100 business executives in medium-to-large corporations by Accenture, a management consulting firm, revealed that for more than half of men and women, work-life balance — ahead of money, recognition, and autonomy — is the essential characteristic of a successful career.  The majority of employees surveyed believe they can have both a successful career and a full life outside work. Work-life balance is so important that more than half of those surveyed turned down a job offer because of the potential impact on their lives outside of work.

The work-life balance has a profound effect on both commercial and residential real estate.  With more employees taking advantage of flex time and working remotely, “you can put more people into less bricks-and-mortar real estate,” said Heidelberger. “It’s a mindset shift from simply being present to being focused on results.”  Enabling employees to balance work with lifestyle and exercise provides organizations with a magnet for attracting the best and brightest talent. The current trend to urban living certainly supports what workers expect in terms of flexibility and balance. Today’s cities provide most services and amenities, including culture, education, housing, and healthcare, within the urban core. Lower commute times further encourage living and working in the city.  Heidelberger sees this  trend continuing for all three generational groups.  

The demand for urban space has caused many to adapt.  For example, while fringe areas have always attracted creative types and the younger generation, many previous fringe areas are now in vogue and have increased significantly in price.  Heidelberger cited a warehouse area in Tribeca that was known for years as an artists’ colony. “With the rising cost of real estate, those artists have become developers,” she said.  

As generations transition, so has the conception of the American Dream, from owning a little house with a white picket fence to a McMansion, and now to a city loft.  But, whatever the dream, “we’re all trying to do the best we can,” said Heidelberger, “using our brains for good and developing tools that help us along the way.” 

Suzanne Heidelberger is a past chair of CoreNet NYC and is Senior Vice President of Global Real Estate and Workplace Enablement at American Express.

Ask the Millennials: Corporate Leader Interview

By Alexandra Betesh – KBA Lease Services and Thomas P. Reilly – Federal Reserve Bank of New York, Newsletter Committee Members

Baby Boomers, Gen X-ers and Millenials all have extremely distinct identities, reflecting their respective experiences in business and the world around them. Tom Vecchione from Gensler and Jake Merriman from Gen Y Catalyst share their experiences and opinions on how these generations are impacting our cities. 

The contrast amongst Baby Boomers, Gen X-ers and Millennials in the workplace is striking. Boomers, born between 1946 and 1964, are currently focused on their legacy. They are enjoying the last part of their life cycle in business, and are often perceived as extremely confident. X-ers, born between 1965 and 1979, present themselves as fiercely self-sufficient. They do whatever it takes to prevail, and are willing to pay their dues. In contrast, Merriman explains that Millennials, born between 1980 and 2000, think that they can “be and do whatever they want.” They have their fingers on the pulse of business and believe they can generate value. 

These differences create a challenge when the generations work together. Boomers and Xers need to learn how to stay current, collaborate, and be more nimble.  Millennials need to learn how to thicken their skin to the harsh realities around them, to hustle, and show up when they are supposed to.  Despite their youth, Millennials are starting to assert themselves, demanding hyper-connectivity, upward mobility, and a fair work-life balance. They seek mentorship and easy access to knowledge from their employers.  Merriman explains, “Millennials have been raised and reared to have a tribal mentality. They want to be around other people that think like them, act like them, and have aspirations like them.” 

Vecchione believes that urban living attracts Millennials because the inherent density, co-location, and adjacency nurture them. “Many attributes about how Millennials see life, career paths, cultural goals and hyper-connectivity are representative attributes of cities themselves.” Merriman further explains, “They want to be around the action, and that action is in the cities.”  Both Vecchione and Merriman expect that cities, and especially New York, are going to become bigger and denser, with rampant innovation as different businesses intersect. For example, in New York, the tech sector is embedding itself within fashion, media, healthcare and finance industries. 

While these cultural changes and developments are occurring, there will be a shift in New York’s real estate landscape. On the residential side, the strong culture of connectivity and collaboration is bringing about rapid gentrification. Vecchione explains that, “In the 70s and 80s it took areas in New York nearly 20 years to reinvent itself in contrast to Brooklyn and Queens, which have only taken 10 years.”  He sees “a very bright, dense, vibrant, and exciting city ahead of us – probably the number one city in the world.”  Vecchione adds, “We are neck-in-neck with London economically, but I think the global wealth markets will shift us and we will be in an unparalleled place like we haven’t been before.” Merriman believes “The collaboration exhibited in Millennial culture will transform New York from a place where ‘I am great,’ to ‘we are great’ and ultimately to a place where life is great.”

On the commercial side, employees’ needs are becoming more intertwined with real estate.  Real estate can play a large role in shaping their identity as an employee, and will become increasingly integral to employee productivity and retention. Vecchione thinks that this is a “wildly creative time” in the world of corporate real estate because, “if you can have something to do with how the population is shifting and who sits next to each other, you have an incredible amount of power.” Merriman agrees, “The workplace must be congruent with how they see themselves as a professional now and what they aspire to be. If corporate real estate can align with that, they are going to win.”

“In order to move forward, corporate real estate will need to collaborate with the business leadership and research the metrics behind performance,” says Vecchione. Furthermore, although some ventures will fail, Vecchione states, “We cannot be afraid to test the waters in sales or structurally shift certain things. Corporate real estate groups need to understand people and what they all do. They need to know what happens if all the rules are broken and we need to start with a completely different set of guidelines. Once they are less dependent on that structure, they will truly be able to add value. Just ask the Millennials.” 

Tom Vecchione “loves to build things.” Vecchione joined Gensler, the global design firm, 25-years ago after studying urban planning at Cornell, and is currently a design director and principal focused on workplace strategy and master-planning. He helps businesses and cities, “take their portfolio and environment, and align it with what is transforming in their business and culture.” Tom has developed an international portfolio of workplaces and corporate campuses for top performing companies working on projects in NYC, Boston, Tokyo, Dubai, Cairo and Zurich.

Jake Merriman is the founder and CEO of Gen Y Catalyst, a Millennial Entrepreneurial Think Tank. His primary focus is to help Millennials become high impact leaders.  He has helped hundreds of Millennials leverage their value in the marketplace. He believes that the biggest challenge today is help them “work together to impact the marketplace effectively and continue the growth of the economy.”

ArtSpace: From Artist Advocate to Real Estate Developer & Owner

Artspace started thirty years ago with a single person advocating for affordable housing in a warehouse district in MN.  This initial effort served as a catalyst for innovative P3 (public private partnership) collaboration and financing across the country, resulting in $582 million and 3,440,962 square feet in total development.  Working with community leaders, Artspace has creatively developed sustainable communities and preserved some of our nation’s historical and cultural heritage through adaptive reuse and ground up development.  Harlem’s El Barrio’s Artspace PS109 demonstrates how Artspace, the nation’s leading developer for artist live/work space, pioneered and now masters “Forever Affordable”.

Affordable housing in New York City has always been a challenge, but of late it has become almost intractable. This situation is fueled by a multi-generational swell in the city where older NYC residents are aging-in-place. Baby-boomer empty nesters are remaining in the city after their children leave. Young Gen X families are opting out of transitioning to the suburbs and staying in the city to raise their children.These trends,compounded with the millennium generation continuing to be drawn to New York City, are increasing demand for housing that is easily outpacing supply. In addition, the gap between wages and rent has widened. Over the past 20 years, wages have increased less than 15% while the average monthly rent in NYC has increased 40%, making it more and more difficult to find affordable housing. To address this crisis, Mayor DeBlasio launched Housing New York A Five-Borough Ten-Year Plan.

While the affordable housing challenge is daunting and complex, Artspace (who was cited in DiBlasio’s plan) holistically integrates affordable housing into historic and cultural preservation and community revitalization.

They are the nation’s leader for artist-led community transformations. Artspace’s latest project, done in partnership with the City of New York and El Barrio's Operation Fight Back (an East Harlem community development organization) is a historic and cultural preservation of Public School 109 (PS109). Originally built in 1898 in the Gothic Style by Charles B.J. Snyder, the property has been redeveloped through adaptive reuse to create an artistic community with 89 affordable live/work units, 10,000 square feet of commercial space and 3,000 square feet of common community art space. To preserve their cultural heritage, 50% of the units associated with this $52 million project are dedicated to those already living in the El Barrio neighborhood. Some of the goals for the project include:

Anchoring and further catalyzing El Barrio’s dynamic cultural mix and helping a changing community retain its identity
Facilitating economic growth during construction and operation
Engaging 1,000+ residents
Bringing an important historic building back to life

El Barrio, which is scheduled to be occupied in 2015, is the third project that Artspace has completed in New York; the first was the 60 unit  $17.6 million Artspace Buffalo Lofts, followed by the 45 unit $18 million Patchogue Loft complex in Long Island.

While their methods and results are unique and often considered magical, the beginning of the Artspace story is a familiar one. After witnessing artists being financially squeezed out of neighborhoods they created, Artspace founder Kelley Lindquist began advocating for affordable space for artists and arts organizations.  He became painfully aware of artists’ transient cycle of moving, settling into a raw venue, developing an infrastructure and a community, and then having to start all over again in a lower rent district. This cycle of constantly moving highlighted the fact that the problem was not just finding artists affordable live and work space – the problem was finding space artists could stay in year-over-year.

To break this cycle, Artspace realized that they needed to own and manage the space for artists. With no experience in real estate development, ownership, or management, but lots of passion and commitment from a core team, Artspace sought funding and started building relationships. In addition to funds specifically targeted for the arts, Artspace researched the newly introduced LIHTC (low income housing tax credits) and determined that this financial instrument could be applied to housing purposely built or restored for artist’s live-work space.   Since many of their future projects would likely involve renovation of historic properties, they also sought historical preservation funds.  Many private and public foundations and funds currently contribute to Artspace project funding.  

After initial success in Minneapolis, Artspace’s reputation grew. New projects are generally initiated by a community – not by Artspace. To create “forever affordable” and sustainable properties, Artspace understands that planning and due diligence are critical and  relationships are paramount. Projects range in size from 10 to 100 units,but despite the size of the project, all use a multi-year, multi-functional approach in which local artists, community leaders and town officials are active members of the planning and implementation team.   
Artspace's mission is to create, foster, and preserve affordable space for artists and arts organizations.  
Artists who live and work in an Artspace development are part of a “sharing economy.” Gallery space  as well as tools, supplies, and equipment are often shared, and common areas such as hallways, double as collaboration and exhibit space. Melodie Bahan, Artspace’s Vice President of Communications, suggests that these inspired environments create a platform where diversity is embraced and cross-genre and cross-generational collaboration is fostered. A sense of community is created where artists share in the overall leadership of the community and the management of the property. In general, each Artspace community has artist committees to manage exhibits and events to support “livability” and to select potential tenants. Few will argue the intrinsic value of “Creative Placemaking”, in which cultural assets are leveraged to strengthen the social fabric of communities, but Artspace has actually measured it. In a recent Artspace study entitled “Taking a Measure of Creative Placemaking”, 75% of tenants were surveyed across five projects. The responses indicate that living in an art space increased their productivity and income by approximately 30%.

Artspace designs their projects to suit the unique needs of artists. They often include features that may be more costly, such as wider doorways and higher ceilings. To keep artists continuously in-residence at their properties, Artspace does not “flip” their properties; instead they aggressively refinance and tightly manage their properties to make them “forever affordable”. The American dream of home ownership is not dead according to Bahan, but rather it is being redefined, personalized and customized for artists and others.

Originally started to focus on the needs of the under-served artist market, Artspace has demonstrated that artists are an under-leveraged community resource. When asked what New York real estate professionals can learn from Artspace Projects LLC, Bahan highlights how much Artspace learned from their New York partners. She stated that the keys to their success were listening and agility. They have a proven tool-kit and they remain committed to understanding and satisfying the unique needs of specific communities and preserving the cultural integrity of the neighborhoods they serve. Artspace projects generally take longer to plan, but through the power of multi-functional teams and collaboration, they achieve financial, social, and environmental sustainability.


<font "="" style="font-size: xx-large;" color="#1377bb">CoreNet NYC Hosts Women's Community Event - "Embracing Change: Communication Strategies in Turbulent Times"


NEW YORK March 24, 2015 CoreNet Global New York City Chapter (CoreNet NYC) is pleased to announce that it hosted a program entitled “Embracing Change: Communication Strategies in Turbulent Times” on Thursday, February 26, 2015 at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP in New York City.

Motivation Through Storytelling

Over 100 CoreNet NYC members and guests attended the presentation by Dr. Robert J. Bies, Professor of Management at Georgetown University, to learn effective leadership skills. In the first section of his presentation, Dr. Bies offered sound advice and personal anecdotes on how to use “storytelling” as a key communication tool to motivate people. Dr. Bies’ advice included some verbal do’s and don’ts: “Don’t say if, say when…Don’t say but, say imagine.” He also suggested changing up the pattern of speech to make a greater impact, “speed up, slow down, raise your voice,” and he reminded people of “the power of pause, of silence.”

Learning by Doing

In the second half of the program, Dr. Bies guided guests through a group exercise to help them practice motivating an audience by finding a focus in their communication. He asked them to “let the key phrase of what you want people to remember be the driving principle.” After the exercise, guests enjoyed a light reception and the opportunity to network and practice what they learned.

<font "="" style="font-family: Arial, sans-serif; letter-spacing: 0.200000002980232px; font-size: xx-large; line-height: 43.3777809143066px;" color="#1377bb">CoreNet NYC Discusses Preparation for Future Superstorms in the Wake of Sandy at Mohawk Showroom


NEW YORK March 10, 2015 The New York City Chapter of CoreNet Global is pleased to announce that it hosted a program entitled Resiliency: Are you Ready for the Next Superstorm? which was held on Wednesday, February 4, 2015 at the Mohawk Showroom at 71 West 23rd Street in New York City.

Hussain Ali-Kahn, Director of Strategy at CBRE, moderated a distinguished panel of speakers from highly respected companies:

  • Vincent Warner, Managing Principal of WB Engineers

  • Michael Sciara, Principal and Vice President of John W. Baumgarten Architect

  • Chip Logan, Director of Global Real Estate at BNY Mellon

The Devastation of Sandy

The panel discussed the threat posed by Superstorms in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, and how CRE professionals can best help prepare their companies and their communities for potential future disasters. Panelists recounted severe damages incurred by Superstorm Sandy, including loss of power to buildings such as hospitals and flooded basements. Said Mr. Logan, “No one thought a storm like Sandy would hit this City. No one was ready, and preparation was insufficient. I remember downtown Manhattan looking like a third world country.”

Next Time, We’ll Be Ready

Panelists lauded the resiliency of New Yorkers in weathering the storm. They offered several recommendations in preparation for potential future storms including the addition of submersible generators to critical facilities, greater quantities of materials to redirect water such as sandbags, and more sophisticated pumping systems.

<font "="" style="font-family: Arial, sans-serif; letter-spacing: 0.200000002980232px; font-size: xx-large; line-height: 43.3777809143066px;" color="#1377bb">CoreNet NYC Hosts Sold-Out New Year's Celebration at Newly Reopened Rainbow Room

NEW YORK January 16, 2014 CoreNet Global New York City Chapter (CoreNet NYC) is pleased to announce it hosted its Annual New Year’s Party on Thursday, January 9, 2014. This year’s event was held at the Mandarin Oriental in New York City, a larger venue that could accommodate record attendance for the association’s annual New Year’s event.

Over 350 CoreNet NYC members and guests from the corporate real estate industry gathered to celebrate the start of the New Year. While looking to the year ahead, the organization hopes to continue its momentum in 2014 after being recognized as the 2013 CoreNet Global Chapter of the Year. 

<font "="" style="font-size: xx-large;" color="#1377bb">CoreNet NYC Hosts Discussion with Arianna Huffington to Redefine Success

NEW YORK November 26, 2014 The New York City Chapter of CoreNet Global (CoreNet NYC) is pleased to announce that it hosted a special program featuring Arianna Huffington entitled, “Redefining Success: The Third Metric That Can Benefit Your Bottom Line” on Wednesday, November 12, 2014 at the W Union Square in New York City.

Arianna Huffington, the chair, president and editor-in-chief of the Huffington Post Media Group and one of the most influential women in the world engaged with CoreNet members and commercial real estate professionals in a discussion focused on health and wellness in a work climate where people are continually putting themselves at risk of over-working. Huffington demonstrated how the workplace can have a significant influence on employee productivity and success. Using her own offices as an example, Huffington added that many professionals may still be hesitant of accepting innovative ideas: "Nap rooms in the city that never sleeps? In the middle of a news room? There was a lot of skepticism."

Adding Happiness as a Third Metric To Define Success

Huffington cited her own collapse in 2007 as her wakeup call that led her to reflect on the true meaning of “success” and a “good life.” She began to question conventional wisdom: “We’ve been defining success by two metrics: money and power. But that’s like trying to sit on a two-legged stool. We need that third leg.” Huffington explained that the “third leg” is creating a sustainable and happy life and it begins with keeping stress under control: “75% of all healthcare costs and problems are attributed to stress in some direct fashion, while only 25% are beyond our control.”

Embracing Health and Wellness to Increase Success

She attributes a reliance on technology and unhealthy work habits as major contributors of stress: “We are actually taking better care of our smartphones than we are of ourselves…technology promotes burnout…and multitasking makes us less effective.” The solution, Huffington suggests, is meditation: “Very effective people meditate 2 times a day for 20 minutes – if this is a challenge, start small with 5 minutes and see the impact to your well-being.”

Huffington advocated for being aware of one’s health so as to avoid exhaustion and impairing judgment. She recounted: “Every hiring mistake I made was when I was tired,” adding “leadership is noticing the icebergs before they hit the Titanic, and it is harder to do in a tired state.” Huffington warned against using “busy as a badge of honor,” reminding the audience that it is O.K. to say “no” to work that you cannot do, stating “Learn to be ok with silence. No is a full sentence. Go be quiet.” Instead, she suggested using the time to build connections with other people such as co-workers, family, friends and acquaintances, who may otherwise be taken for granted.

Capital Liquity Sustains Recovery

It’s 2014 and the real estate recovery continues to gain momentum, but according to David Eyzenberg, Principal, Investment Banking (Real Estate Debt, Equity & Structured Capital) at Avison Young, a confluence of recovering market fundamentals and sustainable capital flows will be required to keep it going. 

Before the financial crisis (pre-2008), businesses boomed and people were flipping properties faster than pancakes at IHOP. But after the fall of Lehman Brothers and the bank bailouts, the door to credit slammed shut. Now that recovery is underway, has credit eased? 

“It’s partially true that access to financing has gotten easier, but the debt markets have also gotten better at funneling credit to where it needs to go on a risk-adjusted basis,” said Eyzenberg. “There’s tremendous li¬quidity for transactions involving core assets, at spreads on par or better than pre-2008. However, credit for deals with value added components in secondary markets continues to be disciplined.” 

Eyzenberg expects an increase in the availability of real estate credit from the five primary sources: commercial banks, insurance companies, commercial mortgage backed securities (CMBS), finance companies (including mortgage REITS), and fund managers.

Part of what David Eyzenberg does at Avison Young is to arrange debt for real estate transactions. “We have seen a sizable shift in our business from existing asset financing to de¬velopment transactions. Though we continue to work on acquisition and refinance transaction, we are finding it more advantageous to focus on sol¬id development transactions, where some form of structure is required.” 

Banks will continue to compete on price to put attractive paper on their recovering balance sheets. Addition¬ally, they have become more open to doing construction loans, though no¬where near pre-2008 levels. “A recov¬ering economy will help rationalize going out a bit on the risk spectrum, maybe not on a leverage standpoint but to weaker capitalized borrow¬ers and B quality assets in search of yield,” Eyzenberg predicts.

Insurance companies will continue to grow their books by focusing on high-quality, fixed-rate loans. It’s possible that a widening spread between corporate bonds and commercial loans may make lending less attractive but, with an expected increase in interest rates, that is not likely to occur. 

CMBS markets are not likely to return to their pre-crisis peak but are still expected to stabilize at healthy, sustainable levels. In short, private lending markets do not have enough capacity to handle the coming debt maturities, and a vibrant CMBS is of paramount importance to sustain the current recovery. 

The shadow banking market, composed of non-regu¬lated debt providers, will continue to make risky loans and will fill the gap created by any pull back from traditional entities (potentially because of over regulation). Mortgage REITS, finance companies and credit private-equity funds will continue to increase their stakes, as a recovering market is more forgiving to aggressive lending. 

Whether private equity or hedge, fund managers will con¬tinue to chase yield by providing gap capital. “Mezzanine financing, a loan where the collateral is the partnership in¬terest of the borrowing entity, will continue to be attractive on a risk-adjusted basis for longer term credit providers at reasonable leverage. However, those seeking to leverage con¬struction loans will find gap capital in shorter supply and more expensive when available.” 

Eyzenberg‘s practice also spans structuring joint ventures between private owner/operators and institutional equity providers. Right now, foreign investors “are bringing money in at breakneck speed.” 
He cited China and Canada as just two of the robust economies investing in the U.S. “It’s created liquidity for the markets.” Is it challenging for foreign investors to finance projects? “It depends. Many foreign investors simply acquire assets, all cash, thereby circumventing the financing process. When that is not possible they either turn to the local office of a do¬mestically domiciled lending institution or get financed via the local JV partner’s relationships.” 

Eyzenberg sees more competition from foreign owned firms to acquire properties. “Foreign capital is perceived as lower cost of capital, so they’re aggressive, and consequently, com¬petitive.”
Does he worry that the investment climate will spur over¬building? 

“It’s hard to overbuild due to the availability of information regarding new developments. The lending industry has become very efficient with self-policing. I don’t worry about supply. I worry about demand fluctuations due to unpredictable ex¬ogenous factors.” 

How has the Fed’s quantitative easing and zero interest rate policy affected the availability of credit? 
“When interest rates go up, I don’t see how much tighter risk premiums can rise,” said Eyzenberg. “If you look at the buyer who needs leverage, he gets hurt. Well capitalized in¬stitutions aren’t effected by interest rates like entrepreneurs. On the institutional level, there’s so much demand to deploy capital that small fluctuations won’t mean that much. They would have to go way up to make any difference in invest¬ment behavior patterns.” 

Bottom line? 

“I worry about any loosening of discipline,” said Eyzenberg. 
“Things are great until they’re not.”

David Eyzenberg is a Principal in the New York office of Avison Young, where he focuses on capital raising/
structuring for Avison Young’s CRE clients. Mr. Eyzenberg’s practice spans entity and asset recapitalizations, financing debt and property acquisitions/developments, as well as advising Canadian and domestic institutions on deploying capital into appropriate opportunities. Complementing his professional endeavors, Mr. Eyzenberg teaches graduate real estate finance studies in New York University’s Masters of Science in Real Estate program.

Mr. Eyzenberg previously served as Managing Director and head of commercial real estate for NewOak Capital, a New York-based financial advisory firm. There, Mr. Eyzenberg completed multiple property financing and CMBS/CRE CDO valuation assignments. His tenure at NewOak began in 2011 after its acquisition of the investment banking practice of Eyzenberg’s Prodigious Capital Group, where Mr. Eyzenberg served as President since 2005. There he led the firm in consummating over $350M in financing and advisory assignment. Prior to running Prodigious Capital Group, Mr. Eyzenberg was associated with several boutique real estate investment banks where he participated in over $650M of financing transactions. Mr. Eyzenberg began his real estate career on the buy side working for Merrill Lynch, Greenstreet Partners and Ramius Capital Group.

Mr. Eyzenberg is a graduate of New York University, where he received a Bachelor’s Degree and a Master’s Degree in real estate finance and investment. He serves as President of the NYU Schack Real Estate Institute Alumni Board and also sits on the Advisory Committee of the NYU Schack Real Estate Institute. Mr. Eyzenberg is an active member of ULI, ICSC, RELA, YMBA, Corenet, MBA, and is a frequent speaker at industry events.



<font "="" color="#1377bb">CoreNet NYC and Joe Azelby of JP Morgan Present Tips for Success  

NEW YORK – November 7, 2014 – The New York City Chapter of CoreNet Global is pleased to announce that it hosted a presentation entitled “Kiss Your ‘BUT’ Good-Bye,” which was held on Wednesday, October 21, 2014 at the Hippodrome at 1120 Avenue of the Americas.

The CoreNet Women’s Special Interest Group (CoreNet SIG) invited members and guests 
for a special presentation with Joe Azelby, Managing Director and CEO of JP Morgan Asset Managements’ Global Real Asset Group and co-author of “Kiss Your But Good-Bye: How To Get Beyond The One Word That Stands Between You and Success.” 

The presentation highlighted some simple and practical ways to overcome individual weakness 

to achieve desired career and personal relationships. “B-U-T is a very powerful word. It nullifies every word that comes before it and magnifies every word that comes after it,” stated Mr. Azelby as he urged the audience to find their individual “buts”—whether it’s a lack of skills, a distracting behavior or a personality quirk that interferes with achieving success.

The presentation took place at the newly redesigned and updated Hippodrome, boasting a new 
and expansive two-story lobby, operating the smartest building systems available and finished in classic Italian marble, limestone and silver leaf.

CoreNet NYC Presented Innovation Workshop featuring Big Data, Energy Efficiency and Sustainability

NEW YORK – November 7, 2014 – The New York City Chapter of CoreNet Global is pleased to announce that it hosted a workshop entitled “Innovation Forum,” which was held on Wednesday, October 22, 2014 at the Haworth Showroom.

A distinguished panel of industry representatives from big data, energy efficiency, sustainability, and the NYC New Local Legislation shared their ideas and products for corporate real estate and workplace management: 

• Andre Tuluca, RA, Vidaris Inc.

• Brian Lehon, Haworth

• Nadine Cino, Tyga-Box

• Nora Fay, Lucifer Lighting

• Jenna Tatum, Mayor’s Office of Long-Term Planning and Sustainability

• Jeffrey Lipitz, 3M Architectural Markets

Innovations in Commercial Real Estate: 

In presenting their latest products, the speakers discussed ways to improve idea generation and 


• Brian Lehon, Haworth – “Bluescape allows you to show progression of how things are 

getting done. A living document that an unlimited number of folks can log into and 

designed for today’s mobile worker. Facilitates fluid ideation and rapid interaction with 

uninterrupted idea flow.”

• Nadine Cino, Tyga-Box “An idea hiding in plain sight.”

• Jeffrey Lipitz, 3M “reuse, repurpose with limited downtime.”

The News Funnel Q&A: Michael Davidson, Head of Real Estate - Americas East & New York Headquarters, JPMorgan Chase 


As usual, New York City is currently at the forefront of discussions among real estate professionals from around the country, especially as it begins to generate additional momentum as a burgeoning hub for technology startups. In light of this, we spoke with Michael Davidson, the head of real estate – Americas East and New York Headquarters at JPMorgan Chase, about the convergence of technology and real estate, as well as the future outlook for the city’s real estate market moving forward, for this FunnelCast Q&A. 

FunnelCast: What is your background and how did you enter the real estate industry?

Michael: I went to Fordham University and graduated in 1994. I ultimately ended up in real estate through an introduction made by the dean of students at the time (now president of the university) Joseph McShane, who introduced me to David Arena when he was at Morgan Stanley. Oddly enough, I’m still working with him to this day at JP Morgan.

FunnelCast: What is your view on the future outlook for the New York City real estate market, especially Brooklyn, giving all of the attention it’s been receiving recently?

Michael: I don’t want to speak on behalf of JPMorgan Chase, I’ll just give you my view as a real estate professional. New York is the financial capital of the world. It’s a hub for business. It’s a hub for culture. New York has continuously evolved over the years as a melting pot, a home for all sorts of people. Bringing it back to real estate … all of that makes it a place where people want to live and work. I think the future prospects for New York, based off of all of this, is fantastic. To answer the second part of the question, I’ve heard the words “tech hub” and “tech triangle” assigned to Brooklyn and I think there’s a validity to that, because you can get more space for your money compared to locations like Midtown. The construction of buildings in Brooklyn also lends itself to the types of very open and collaborative work environments that young people are seeking. In the end, real estate always follows a trend in the ways people are living and working.

FunnelCast: How are technology and the real estate industry comingling right now?

Michael: Even with the advent of so much technology that is making us more efficient, faster and better, no one should forget that the actual location and work environment companies are placing people in are still just as important as the technological advantages they are equipping them with. There are three elements at play here: technology, people and real estate. Efficiency, and ultimately success, is determined by how each individual company manages these three elements.

FunnelCast: What role do you see technology playing in the commercial real estate industry in the future?

Michael: In terms of the use of personal technology, many companies are trying to spearhead the latest initiatives when it comes to clients. Part of the potential problem, though, is that there are so many different platforms, and I think we as an industry need to decide what technologies work best and what makes the most sense. Technology forces businesses and people to think more than ever about what it is and what they truly need. If a person or a company is rushing out every time they see something new, that’s a dangerous process to get into.

FunnelCast: Congratulations on being named Corporate Real Estate Executive of the Year by the New York City chapter of CoreNet. On that note, does CoreNet NYC have any events coming up in the near distant future?

Michael: Yes, we have a few really exciting events coming up this fall:

  • The Art & Science of Mega Moves—Tuesday, September 16, 2014

    • I will be speaking on a panel for this upcoming CoreNet NYC program to discuss how major office relocation initiatives are career defining projects for most CRE executives, whether it’s the relocation of an HQ function to promote brand or location strategy initiatives, repositioning a shared services center to leverage cost efficiencies, or the creation of a new R&D hub driven by talent markets. Gagan Singh, Vice President, Goldman Sachs, will moderate the panel and other panelists include Bruce MacAffer, SVP, Group Real Estate Americas, WPP and Keith Milone, Real Estate Portfolio Manager, Microsoft.

  • Securing the Smart Building—Tuesday, October 7, 2014

    • CoreNet NYC’s Technology Community will host a panel discussion on the cyber security concerns, breaches and remedies around the networked components of today’s modern “smart” building. Speakers will include James Whalen, Senior Vice President & Cheif Investment Officer, Boston Properties; Marc Petock, Vice Presidtent of Marketing, Lynxspring; Larry Bortstein, Esq., Partner, Bortstein Legal Group; and Jesus Molina, Independent Security Consultant

  • Arianna Huffington: How Do You Define Success? — Wednesday, November 12

    • CoreNet NYC will host a major presentation by Arianna Huffington, Chair, President and Editor-in-Chief of the Huffington Post Media Group, as she discusses her newest #1 NY Times bestselling book Thrive: The Third Metric to Redefining Success and Creating a Life of Well Being, Wisdom and Wonder.

Corenet NYC Hosts "How to Select a Career Coach
and Why You Need One!"

CoreNet Global New York City Chapter (CoreNet NYC) is pleased to announce that it recently hosted ”How to Select a Career Coach – And Why You Need One!” on Thursday, August 7, 2014 at the DORMA Design Center in New York City.


Leading commercial real estate professionals gathered to examine how to select the best career coach in today’s professional environment and explored the resources, risks, rewards and costs of career experts. Pierre Ratté, a Senior Manager at Pfizer, moderated the panel of career experts, which included:

  • Marc Betesh, President and Chief Executive Officer, KBA Lease Services
  • Steve Felix, Behavioral Presentation Coach, Felix/Weiner Consulting Group
  • Nina Fiddian-Green, Life and Leadership Coach, The Five O’Clock Club
  • Gabriella Jordan, Executive Coach and President, The Handel Group


Addressing the Challenges of Career Moves in Modern Business

The workshop focused on the increasing number of career moves in modern business and the challenges that many professionals will face when searching for a new job. Understanding that career moves require professional skills and contacts, Mr. Ratté facilitated discussions about the importance of selecting the right career coach, networking, and making decisions that lead to a happy professional life.


The panelists explored these subjects by discussing their different styles of career coaching and how these different approaches address the challenges associated with changing jobs, overcoming career plateaus and adjusting to new corporate cultures.     

Corenet NYC Explores the Art & Science of Mega  




The New York City Chapter of CoreNet Globalis pleased to announce that it hosted a sold-out program entitled The Art & Science of Mega Moves, which was held on Tuesday, September 16, 2014 at the Grand Hyatt in New York City.


Gagan Singh, Vice President of Goldman Sachs, moderated a distinguished panel of speakers from highly respected organizations:

  • Michael Davidson, Managing Director, JP Morgan Chase
  • Bruce MacAffer, SVP, Group Real Estate Americas, WPP
  • Keith Milone, Real Estate Portfolio Manager, Microsoft


The Art and Science of Large Scale Corporate Relocation:


The panel examined the intricacies of large scale corporate relocation and the effects it can have on the careers of those involved. Speakers discussed the knowledge and skills sets that are imperative to the CRE professional and their ability to successfully execute a ‘Mega Move.’ The panel highlighted the following:

  • A renewed focus on the necessities of a ‘knowledge-based’ workforce increases the complexity of ‘Mega Moves.’
  • CRE Professionals must capitalize on synergies and consolidate functions.
  • An awareness of your business and your geography is essential to success.



CoreNet NYC's Annual Golf Outing Raises Over $50,000 for the Salvadori Center

CoreNet NYC hosted its 2014 CoreNet Golf Outing on Monday, August 11, 2014, in Purchase, New York to benefit the Salvadori Center. The event brought together prominent corporate real estate professionals to raise funds for the collaborative, project-based learning experiences the Center provides to students in public schools throughout the five boroughs of New York City.

Over 300 industry leaders golfed at the event that was played simultaneously on two courses: the Century Country Club and the Old Oaks Country Club. Following the games, guests enjoyed the opportunity to network at a cocktail reception and dinner.


Exceeding Expectations


The 2014 CoreNet Golf Outing raised over $50,000 to support the Salvadori Center’s residencies in New York City public schools. Raised through outing sponsorships, course contests, raffle sales and a live auction during dinner, the donation will also facilitate program expansion.


CoreNet Hosts 'A Walk in the Cloud'

On Thursday, July 24, 2014 in Sabey Data Centers’ Intergate.Manhattan building, CoreNet NYC's Technology Community hosted 'A Walk in the Cloud.' All CoreNet NYC members were invited to attend the event and explore how New York City’s only purpose-built data center utilizes revolutionary technology. The event featured private tours of the Intergate.Manhattan building and an executive presentation that illustrated the technical attributes of the high-end, highly secure technical facility. Speakers during the presentation included: Mike Bosco, Director of Operations, Sabey Data Centers; Ed Condolon, Senior Project Manager, Sabey Construction; Dan Meltzer, Vice President, Sabey Data Centers; and Gregory Skaler, Senior Associate, Cushman & Wakefield.


Providing Support to Data Centers and the Environment

More than 55 CoreNet NYC members were guided through the Intergate.Manhattan building by representatives of Sabey Data Centers. Attendees learned about Sabey Data Centers’ experience with wholesale colocation/turnkey and powered shell products that support corporate data centers and telecommunications equipment. Throughout the tour, Sabey representatives facilitated in-depth discussions about the building’s high-tech cooling towers, utility power equipment, electrical feeds and generators.

During the executive presentation, Dan Meltzer noted, “Despite selling and operating state-of-the-art technology, we have limited our energy consumption through the use of retrofitted cooling towers on the roof. In fact, these efforts have been so successful that we were granted New York State tax exemption and additional rebates from the New York State Energy Research Development Authority.”

Inspiring Future Innovations

After the executive presentation, CoreNet members asked additional questions about the cutting-edge data system and Sabey representatives explained the technology in specific detail. CoreNet members then utilized this information to formulate their own ideas for improving future data systems. The exchange of ideas between industry professionals and CoreNet members initiated an educational discussion about the future of data centers and possibilities for technological advancement.

CoreNet NYC and IFMA Host Sustainability Event

On Tuesday, June 24, 2014, CoreNet NYC joined the International Facility Management Association’s New York City Chapter (IFMA NYC) at the Open Society Foundations in New York City to host “Energy Efficiency and the Future of the New York Grid.” Hussain Ali-Khan, the Director of Strategy at CBRE and CoreNet NYC Sustainability Co-Chair, moderated the panel of experts, which included: William Horan, Deputy Director of Optimization, New York City Department of Education; Russell Unger, Executive Director, Urban Green Council; Neil Rosen, Energy Manager, North Shore LIJ Health System; and Dave Popisil, Director of Commercial Programs, Con Edison.

A Turning Point in Carbon Policy

Mr. Ali-Khan quoted Al Gore’s 2014 Rolling Stone article, saying, “We are at a turning point in carbon policy, with the future in doubt if we don’t make great decisions.” Mr. Ali-Khan then provided an overview of the Supreme Court decision to allow a carbon tax as part of the Clean Air Act.

Certification Training and Competing to Conserve

The panel highlighted the importance of the Greener, Greater Buildings Plan and Local Law 87 by explaining that:
• Building operators are expected to complete Building Operator Certification training and this education allows operators to analyze a building’s data output to reduce energy consumption.
• City agencies are competing against each other and average energy users to incite energy awareness throughout New York City.

The Benefits of Forced Change

The panel then discussed how Local Law 87 has forced hospitals to exchange their older equipment for more energy-efficient equipment. The panel noted that:
• LED lighting is the “biggest bang for the buck” in hospital energy savings because they save more on lighting costs than energy savings.
• The benefits of following Local Law 87 are so positive that the law has been instated outside of the city.
• Con Edison and NYSERDA offer competitive incentives for reduced energy usage.

Incentives for the Public

The panel then voiced building owners’ concerns about energy efficiency. The panel said that these concerns arose because:
• Building owners have been utilizing minimum energy for base building systems. • Tenants account for 60 to 70 percent of energy consumption.
• Financial incentives for public energy conservation are not available yet.

A Reformed Energy Vision

To conclude the discussion, the panel explained that LED bulbs in factories meant reduced maintenance costs and huge energy savings. In particular, they discussed how Con Edison:
• Had to create energy standards due to inferior lighting and electrical products.
• Is demanding building managers to reduce their energy consumption by 125 megawatts, but larger tenants are still allowed to consume the most energy.
• Is still discussing the specifics of demands for reduced energy consumption. In conclusion, Mr. Popisil said, “It’s going to take awhile for the market to catch up to a reformed energy vision. Asking buildings to consume based upon their specific function seems logical, but this new vision is much more complicated.”



 by Ashley Rigby, Education Specialist, Herman Miller, Inc.

 by Jill Zunshine, Corporate Real Estate, Procurement, Supply Chain, and Operations Executive

 by Jill Zunshine, Corporate Real Estate, Procurement, Supply Chain, and Operations Executive

 by Jill Zunshine, Corporate Real Estate, Procurement, Supply Chain, and Operations Executive

 by Jill Zunshine, Corporate Real Estate, Procurement, Supply Chain, and Operations Executive

 by Jill Zunshine, Corporate Real Estate, Procurement, Supply Chain, and Operations Executive

 by Jill Zunshine, Corporate Real Estate, Procurement, Supply Chain, and Operations Executive

By Sonya Verny, BDO, USA LLP and Carlie Hozza, Innovant, Newsletter Committee Members
CoreNet NYC Hosts “The Power of Place: Exploring the Intersection of Sustainability and Workplace”
CoreNet NYC Hosts “The Power of Place: Exploring the Intersection of Sustainability and Workplace”
CoreNet NYC Hosts “The Power of Place: Exploring the Intersection of Sustainability and Workplace”
CoreNet NYC Hosts “The Power of Place: Exploring the Intersection of Sustainability and Workplace”

Signs may show slowing overall economic growth, but CRE is on an upward path. This year has seen strong and consistent leasing demand for industrial real estate, low vacancy rates for office buildings and rising equity and debt investment in retail. Learn more here,

Signs may show slowing overall economic growth, but CRE is on an upward path. This year has seen strong and consistent leasing demand for industrial real estate, low vacancy rates for office buildings and rising equity and debt investment in retail. Learn more here,

Signs may show slowing overall economic growth, but CRE is on an upward path. This year has seen strong and consistent leasing demand for industrial real estate, low vacancy rates for office buildings and rising equity and debt investment in retail. Learn more here,

Save the date for our CoreNet NYC Annual Dinner - Thursday, April 14, 2016 at the Intrepid Museum. We hope to see you there! 
Save the date for our CoreNet NYC Annual Dinner - Thursday, April 14, 2016 at the Intrepid Museum. We hope to see you there! 

Save the date for our CoreNet NYC Annual Dinner - Thursday, April 14, 2016 at the Intrepid Museum. We hope to see you there! 

For live updates of Monday's Annual Golf Outing, add us on Snapchat!
CoreNet Global NYC would like to thank all members and guests who came to yesterday's Annual Golf Outing at Century and Old Oaks Country Clubs in Purchase, New York. We had a great time in support of our charitable partner, the ACE Mentor Program
CoreNet Global NYC would like to thank all members and guests who came to yesterday's Annual Golf Outing at Century and Old Oaks Country Clubs in Purchase, New York. We had a great time in support of our charitable partner, the ACE Mentor Program
CoreNet Global NYC would like to thank all members and guests who came to yesterday's Annual Golf Outing at Century and Old Oaks Country Clubs in Purchase, New York. We had a great time in support of our charitable partner, the ACE Mentor Program