Bushwick Getting Slicker & Groomed to be the New Silicon Valley

Bwk Tech 001
Rendering of the interior of the Lincoln Property Co. Development on Jefferson Street.

“Go west young man!” was once known as the pioneers’ mantra. In NYC for the past few decades there has been a directional shift to going East to make one’s mark. Now that Williamsburg and Greenpoint pretty much are gentrified to the hilt, developers are venturing their capital eastward to Bushwick.

Jim Stein, vice president of developer Lincoln Property Co. recently purchased a six story building on Jefferson Street and Cypress Avenue that used to house a coffee roasting company. For his $46M investment he will transform the spot into a office complex he says would attract the “tech, advertising, media, and information” workers — are already living in the neighborhood, and they can set up shop at cheaper rates than Manhattan or Dumbo, right in the middle of the employment marketplace.”

Stein further stated, “The New York tech industry is still in its first phase and will continue to grow. Given that many TAMI professionals now live in Brooklyn, managers will have a competitive advantage in attracting sought-after employees by offering the convenience of working near their homes versus commuting to Manhattan.”

The start of the tech start-up wave is evidenced by Voodoo Manufacturing’s emergence this past July as Livestream’s new neighbor at Stagg Street and Morgan Avenue.

On November 17, Cornell Tech went into further detail for its urban campus set to be ready for students in 2017 and whose curriculum is planned to rival Stanford’s Silicon Valley tech programs. It is much too early to tell if this will turn NYC into a tech job hub, but former mayor Bloomberg donated $100 million of his own cash toward the venture this past summer, calling the contribution a * “gift to support a brighter future for our city.” (*as quoted in The Verge)

Other developers are also getting grabby with Bushwick properties. In late September of this year, a joint venture of Savanna and Hornig Capital Partners has begun transforming a former Schlitz brewery in Bushwick, Brooklyn, into office and retail space. “The area’s growing residential development and the opening of bars and restaurants have created opportunities for projects like the brewery revamp, said Tom Farrell, managing director at Savanna, a real-estate private-equity firm and asset-management company. “One of the reasons we like Bushwick is because of the mixed-use nature of the area,” Mr. Farrell said. “Where you have residential and commercial districts side by side gives the opportunity to form office markets.”

Earlier this year in May a three-acre industrial site on Johnson Avenue between Bogart Street and Bushwick Place was snapped up by Normandy Real Estate Partners, Royalton Capital LLC, and Sciame Development and combined their forces to created a *“creative community” with stores, restaurants and office space, according to real estate firm TerraCRG, which brokered the deal. (*as quoted in Brownstoner)

Author: Lori Ann Doyon

Managing editor, head writer, and lead photographer of Greenline | North Brooklyn News since October 2014. Resident of Williamsburg, Brooklyn since 1990.

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