Best Minds: Doug Adams & Mayor Shelley Brindle
What happens when the public and private sectors join forces to revitalize an iconic retail anchor and the surrounding downtown?
In this episode of Conversations with the Best Minds in Real Estate, RCLCO’s Managing Director, Strategic Initiatives, Joshua Boren, sits down with Shelley Brindle, Mayor of Westfield, New Jersey and Doug Adams, Senior Vice President, Development at Streetworks Development, to discuss the “One Westfield Place” redevelopment project—an adaptive reuse of a former Lord & Taylor building and its adjacent parking lots—that is poised to create a vibrant mixed-use downtown, with new office, retail, and residential.
“One of the hallmarks of Streetworks is we look – always start with a larger context and how does the property or the project fit into that larger picture.”
– Doug on the importance of local context
They discuss the history and background of the project, the unique challenges and surprising benefits of repurposing large-scale retail into new office space, how the Mayor’s background at HBO as a Executive Vice President, Domestic Network Distribution and Marketing, helped prepare her for the public sector, and how they worked to incorporate resident input throughout the process.
“I would just say to any of your listeners who are developers: don’t be afraid of the public input. It only helps you get people invested in the success of the project and ultimately helps you with approvals.”
– Mayor Brindle on public feedback and collaboration
About Shelley Brindle, Mayor of Westfield, NJ
Shelley Brindle is currently the Mayor of Westfield, NJ, (pop 31k) elected as the first female Mayor in town history in November 2017, unseating a three term incumbent with her vision for transforming and reimagining Westfield’s historic downtown. Previously, she served as Executive Vice President, Domestic Network Distribution and Marketing at HBO where she was responsible for the revenue, marketing, and overall distribution and growth strategy of HBO’s $4.4B domestic subscription business where she oversaw many of HBO’s most important initiatives, including the launch of HBO’s first streaming service.
About Doug Adams, Senior Vice President, Development
Following a passion for real estate Doug Adams followed a path from banking and equity lending to being a developer for the past 25 years. Working for both large and small companies, he has developed an expertise in large scale entitlements and public-private partnerships in most asset classes.
About Joshua Boren, Managing Director, Strategic Initiatives
Joshua A. Boren specializes in leading business development, marketing, and strategic initiatives for various real estate needs and solutions as part of the RCLCO team. With more than 15 years of experience, Joshua specializes in understanding how network building and relationship management is critical to organizational success, which has resulted in millions of dollars of closed engagements. At RCLCO, he has grown the business development and marketing departments, which were recognized by Globe St. in 2019 as “Influencers in Marketing”. Incredibly involved in the global real estate community, Joshua holds membership and leadership positions at Urban Land Institute Los Angeles and Jewish Federation Los Angeles’ Real Estate and Construction Division, among others. Joshua also hosts RCLCO’s monthly Round-Up Webinar Series, which dives into factors in the real estate market, in addition to other RCLCO events and features.