The Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce engaged BJH to research, define, and contextualize the existing state of Brooklyn’s Innovation Coast and its growth over time. The Innovation Coast is defined as the 21 neighborhoods along Brooklyn’s western coastline from Greenpoint to Fort Hamilton – a corridor that has experienced significant, concentrated growth in the innovation sector over the past decade. BJH used public and proprietary data sources to analyze the real estate, business, demographic, infrastructure, and cultural context of the Coast. The Brooklyn Chamber plans to use the research from this project for business attraction efforts on the Coast to ensure continued growth in the innovation sector. The final report defines and quantifies the Innovation Coast and highlights an action plan comprised of branding, research, policy, and specific projects to support future business attraction.
BJH was engaged by the New York Building Congress to develop a report providing an overview of the tourism and culture sectors in New York City, the vital role that the construction and design industries play in these sectors, and the emerging trends related to construction. The report surveys recent, current and planned capital projects that support tourism and culture in New York and analyzes their economic impact. Finally, the report addresses the most significant challenges hindering construction in this sector and presents recommendations for ensuring that New York continues to develop the infrastructure that is needed to remain a top global destination.
BJH worked as part of a team led by VHB to analyze the City’s regional freight system’s capacity to handle future trade flows in an economically and environmentally feasible manner. BJH provided real estate analysis to support the consultant team’s recommendations by researching supply and demand for freight and other industrial space required by different modes (maritime, rail, air, and truck) in the five borough area and neighboring counties in New Jersey and Connecticut. BJH’s work helped to shape goals for future investments in this critical infrastructure. The FreightNYC initiative is currently set to invest up to $100 million to create new jobs, invest in maritime and rail solutions, modernize distribution facilities, and support an environmentally sustainable freight network.
BJH is working with the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) to create a set of multi-faceted business support programs for fashion producers interested in remaining and growing in New York City. BJH's role has been to provide primary research into the needs of fashion production companies, as well as to understand how designers and manufacturers might more closely cluster in Brooklyn, both physically and through other business model synergies. BJH also worked with the Harvard School of Design to study innovative design ideas that reimagine a new, modern industrial production center in Sunset Park, Brooklyn.
BJH was engaged by the City of Boston Mayor’s Office of Economic Development to develop a food truck market report that analyzed the potential for program expansion and improvements. The report was prepared in conjunction with the Boston Small Business Plan, released in 2016, which seeks to support micro businesses, including food truck owners, and to bolster an equitable economy that offers employment and entrepreneurship opportunities to a diverse group of Bostonians. BJH analyzed primary and secondary data to identify geographic areas that are underserved by food trucks, assessed the costs and benefits of the program to the City of Boston, and explored the mechanics of other cities’ food truck programs. BJH also conducted three focus groups and several individual interviews with food truck owners and other food truck sector stakeholders. BJH used these analyses to help inform a set of recommendations surrounding opportunities for new or enhanced food truck sites and programmatic and administrative improvements to Boston’s food truck program.
The Community Redevelopment Agency of the City of Clearwater, Florida engaged BJH to assist with its $1.6 million Downtown Tenant Anchor Incentive Program. The program will provide up to $250,000 to participating property owners, commercial breweries, brewpubs, and restaurant tenants locating in Downtown Clearwater. BJH’s project scope involved analyzing national, state and regional trends in the craft brewery market and assessing the market strengths for brewery expansion in Clearwater. In addition, BJH was tasked with presenting case studies of successful brewery incentive programs and developments from similar sized municipalities. BJH worked with the Community Redevelopment Agency to assemble findings and case studies into a presentation that the Director delivered to City Council.
BJH, with a team of transit and economics consultants, contributed to a Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ) report detailing the connectivity benefits created by the flow of goods and services in and out of JFK Airport in Jamaica, Queens. BJH analyzed primary and secondary data on employment, wages and business expenditures for on- and off-airport businesses and government employers, such as airport operations (FAA tower, parking operations, TSA, Customs and other public agencies, in-terminal retail and service concessions, and on-property hotels), aviation services (maintenance, fueling, and support services), and off-airport related services (catering, hotels, car services, freight forwarders, and warehousing).
BJH Advisors, working with VHB and BAE, prepared a market report identifying the current trends in the New York City hotel market. The report was used to inform New York City Department of City Planning’s proposal for a Special Permit for hotel development in light manufacturing districts in New York City. The report presented an overview of the hotel industry in the City over the past decade, as well as current and projected future conditions. The report also included comprehensive analyses of trends related to hotel development patterns, demand drivers, occupancy and revenue and the projected development pipeline for new hotel construction and delivery, both in manufacturing areas and in the City overall.
BJH served as the economic and real estate analyst for the team selected by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs to prepare CreateNYC, the first ever cultural plan for the City of New York. BJH supported the team in its extensive community engagement process and conducted a literature review focused on sectoral analysis, labor market analysis, and social impact. BJH also prepared a comprehensive economic impact analysis of the cultural sector in New York City, which identified the total number of workers employed in cultural jobs in New York City, the total wages, and the total output associated with cultural sector. BJH projected the indirect and induced impact of the cultural sector in New York City. This work laid the foundation for the several recommendations put forth in the plan focused on supporting job growth and interagency coordination, as well as the recommendation for increased funding to support cultural organizations as engines of economic growth in New York City. The final plan was announced in July 2017 and can be downloaded here: http://createnyc.org/en/home/.
BJH was the project manager and prime consultant for the State of New York, managing a multi-disciplinary team that developed a Downtown Revitalization Strategic Action Plan for the Village of Westbury in Nassau County, Long Island. The Downtown Revitalization Initiative is a $100 million initiative of Governor Andrew Cuomo which provided 10 towns throughout New York State with $10 million in downtown revitalization funds. Westbury, a 2.4 square mile Incorporated Village in Nassau County along the Long Island Rail Road, was selected for the initiative by the Long Island Regional Economic Development Council. BJH led a team in coordinating a committee of local stakeholders, executing public engagement events, studying existing conditions, and identifying projects to help bring about the revitalization of the downtown. Once projects were identified, BJH and its team prepared an implementation plan that identified the cost of the project, regulatory processes, and partners to implement each of the projects. Projects included a rezoning that would promote transit-oriented development and increased residential density near the train station; a commercial attraction program that would provide grants to new, targeted retailers for fit out; a comprehensive streetscape improvement plan that included street plantings, benches, new lighting, among other streetscape elements; and a redesign of the key intersection that connects the Long Island Rail Road station to the downtown. The funded projects are expected to be implemented between 2017 and 2020. The final plan can be found here.
MFY Legal Services and Housing Conservation Coordinators engaged BJH to conduct an analysis of the interaction between the short-term residential rental market, primarily short term units listed on Airbnb, and the traditional rental housing market in New York City. In order to carry out this analysis, BJH created a classification system using third-party listings data that isolated a category of units it referred to as Impact Listing. In conjunction with providing an analysis of the neighborhood and price effects of Impact Listings, BJH analyzed broader neighborhood and housing trends in the neighborhoods with high concentrations of these listings. The analysis demonstrated high correspondence between areas with growth in Impact Listings and increases in housing prices and constrained supply. The full report, which was issued in June 2016, is available here.
BJH worked as an advisor to Civic Builders in the early conceptual design of a new program, the Building Equity Initiative, an innovative approach to financing charter school construction. Traditionally, charter schools have had difficulty accessing standard financial products and capital due to a lack of expertise (school management focused on quality education, not financial markets and construction) or equity (funding based on per pupil allocations and donations, not capital needs). This program supports a loan pool of standardized transactions, allowing for faster execution, lower borrowing costs, and greater access to capital for both established and emerging schools.
BJH provided strategy and analysis around the structure of the program, both financially and operationally. The team reviewed current financial market conditions for short and long term products, identifying the largest gaps in the market, and participated in interviews with potential lenders and borrowers, summarizing findings for funder presentations. BJH also vetted issues related to program operations, advising on board structure, compliance and risk management tools.
BJH worked with the Long Island City Partnership and Public Works Partners on the LIC Comprehensive Plan, which was released in November 2016. BJH was responsible for the existing conditions and incentives recommendations sections of the Plan, which include a study of demographics, market trends across a variety of real estate types, and business sector changes over the past 10 years. The report highlights the recent and significant development of apartment units in LIC, as well as the challenges arts organizations, industrial companies, and commercial office users are experiencing in finding affordable space. The Plan's recommendations seek to enhance the area's revitalization, leverage the district's market potential, and retain the mixed-use fabric of the neighborhood. Find the Plan here.
NYC Economic Development Corporation and Amtrak led a study on the feasibility of the decking over of Sunnyside Yard. As a part of the analysis, BJH Advisors prepared estimates of potential development values and property tax revenues under various phasing scenarios for the redevelopment of sections over Sunnyside Yard as well as adjacent areas. The analysis relied on BJH’s expertise in tax policy, financial feasibility, and land use policies. A copy of the report can be found here.
The Southwest Brooklyn Industrial Development Corporation received a Brownfield Opportunity Area (BOA) grant from the New York State’s Department of State to create a revitalization plan for an approximately 343-acre area of Red Hook, Brooklyn. The plan is designed to incite economic and industrial business growth in Red Hook by reactivating vacate and under-utilized sites. BJH Advisors, LLC was currently part of the team studying the opportunities and challenges in activating under-utilized brownfields in Red Hook. BJH Advisors conducted real estate market analysis for the industrial and commercial sectors in Red Hook and identified financing structures that will support the rehabilitation and/or development of industrial facilities in Red Hook, given the market conditions and challenges related to brownfield status and resiliency planning.
BJH Advisors undertook financial feasibility analysis as a part of a multidisciplinary team of consultants selected by the New York City Economic Development Corporation (EDC) to develop recommendations to foster the growth of the life sciences industry in New York City. BJH’s role included identifying potential geographic areas for development of a life sciences complex and financial feasibility analysis for real estate investment based on the site conditions, market trends, and the needs of potential life sciences users.
In coordination with Mayor de Blasio’s ten-year affordable housing plan, the Department of Housing Preservation and Development, the Department of City Planning, and the Housing Development Corporation undertook a study of the effects of various a mandatory inclusionary housing (MIH) program structures in various neighborhoods. BJH was the key New York City subconsultant to the prime consultant – BAE Urban Economics – a California based specialist in MIH programming. The consultants examined structures requiring residential developments in the targeted areas to include a certain percent of affordable units. Analysis included the creation of an index for each neighborhood in the New York based on market conditions, a thorough investigation of development costs for a variety of multi-family housing prototypes, and the creation of a dynamic pro forma that included variability across markets and tax policy outcomes.
The Downtown Brooklyn Partnership engaged BJH in a multi-faceted research project to compare a defined downtown Brooklyn geography, pre-rezoning (approximately 10 years ago), to the activity, real estate, spending and other factors in the same geography today. BJH utilized public and proprietary data sources to examine the change in demography, public infrastructure, transit usage, housing units, retail development, and potential consumer spending/demand in a variety of retail categories, and arts and cultural attractions.
BJH worked with another consulting firm to assist the Brooklyn Navy Yard (BNY) in analyzing potential incentive and rezoning scenarios that were being considered for the report’s recommendations. In particular, BJH reviewed the possibility of creating an “Innovation Zone” concept that would allow for residential and industrial uses in close proximity (not ruling out the possibility of these varied uses in the same facility). The idea was to create a vibrant industrial zone that would be able to support more active commercial and retail presence close to the BNY. Industrially zoned building owners would be asked to commit in perpetuity, with deed restrictions and other City registrations, to a certain amount of industrial square footage related to new allowances for residential uses.
BJH authored a policy paper on the historic performance and potential opportunities of issuance for qualified private activity bonds for manufacturing entities in the U.S. given the changing nature of industrial firms over the past 50 years and the growth in smaller urban manufacturing entities that may have capital needs that differ from traditional requirements.