On this episode of HeyBK, Ofer speaks with Andrew Kimball, the CEO of Industry City. Since taking over in 2013, Andrew and his partners transformed the largest industrial complex in NYC into a renowned creativity and innovation hub. Andrew gives us the scoop on what it takes to run such a huge transformation project, how sometimes new opportunities take priority over initial strategic plans, the challenges of managing such a massive space, as well as many of the rewarding moments that come with such a demanding project.
Ofer sits down with Jed Walentas, the real estate developer behind the transformation of DUMBO, one of the most desirable neighborhoods in New York City. In the mid-90’s, Jed became involved in his family business, Two Trees, and spearheaded the transformation of the area. In their conversation, Jed talks about growing up in a grittier NYC where DUMBO was not merely as exciting as it is today, discovering what it meant for his father to “own a neighborhood,” and about his own parenting experience.
In this episode, Ofer sits down with Karen Auster, a key force behind the new Brooklyn experience. During the past two decades, Karen’s Dumbo-based marketing firm, Auster Agency, has helped launch some of Brooklyn’s most exciting projects, including Brooklyn Bridge Park, 1 Hotel, the new Atlantic Antic and now Domino Park. Karen fell in love with Brooklyn after having an ice cream in Brooklyn Heights but it was her role as a mom that helped her find find her path.
Eran Chen, Founder of ODA Architecture, speaks with Ofer Cohen about his big dreams as a young student in Israel, to becoming one of NYC’s most renowned architects with an expanding international clientele. Beginning his career designing McDonald’s restaurants, to eventually starting O.P.E.N and creating a mega-museum of street art, he believed that he could bring new architectural perspective to Brooklyn.
Born and bred Brooklynite, Dave Maundrell, chats with Ofer Cohen about growing up in Williamsburg and witnessing, first-hand, the changes throughout Brooklyn over the last two decades. Dave has great respect for the history of the neighborhood. He’s watched it evolve from its industrial and gang-ridden past in the 70s and 80s, to an artist driven hub in the 90’s, and to what is now a vibrant artful, family-oriented and high-end residential haven.
Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams discusses his concerns, goals and vision for the ever-changing communities throughout Brooklyn. A born and bred Brooklynite, Eric Adams started his career as a police officer, serving 22 years on the force. He began his political career as a State Senator representing Brooklyn districts. To say Adams has experienced the transformation of Brooklyn first-hand would be an understatement.
Jersey-born real estate developer turned fully-immersed Brooklynite, Doug Steiner, meets with Ofer Cohen to share his story about developing Brooklyn, and the creation of Steiner Studios, the largest movie studio outside of Hollywood.
Ever since he moved to Brownstone Brooklyn in the early 2000s, Jonathan Butler’s entrepreneurial projects have fostered a unique Brooklyn brand, which has since spread to other cities. He’s the creator of some of the borough’s most transformative projects, including 1000 Dean, and co-founder of the Brooklyn Flea and the food market Smorgasburg.
David Ehrenberg is the President and CEO of the Brooklyn Navy Yard. In his conversation with Ofer Cohen, he shares his excitement about the Navy Yard’s mission and his experiences while managing some of the most complex and important revitalization projects in America.
On the sixth episode of Hey BK, Ofer Cohen catches up with Jacqui Williams, a real estate lobbyist working on some of Brooklyn’s biggest projects. Jacqui lets us into her remarkable life story – from some dark moments in her past, to becoming a power player in some of the most important projects across the city.
Hey BK is the podcast about the people behind the Brooklyn transformation.
Ofer Cohen, Founder and CEO of TerraCRG, has conversations with guests about their vision and love for this place, and the steps and obstacles it took to leave their footprint on the heart of Brooklyn.