TEANECK—Over 250 members of the Industrial and OfficeAssociation of the New York Metropolitan Area (IOREBA), as well as industry professionals, were in attendance at the 20th annual Office “Developer’s Night” held at the Marriott at Glenpointe Hotel in Teaneck.
The evening’s agenda focused on topics driving New Jersey’s commercial real estate market including, “the demand for new, the benefits of redevelopment for prospective tenants and incentives offered through public and private sectors that are enabling New Jersey to compete against Pennsylvania and other states working hard to lure our tenants away from New Jersey,” said David A. Simon, 2011-2012 president of IOREBA and managing principal of Cassidy Turley, in his opening remarks.
Ted Zangari, member, Sills Cummis & Gross P.C., and panel moderator, told audience members that things in New Jersey are beginning to change on the positive side, and the Smart Growth Economic Development Coalition, which he founded, has been able to plow through several pieces of legislation that are now law. “What a difference three or four years makes,” he remarked. “Unlike the doom and gloom speeches of years ago, I’m here to report that from an economic standpoint and after 21 years of meshing land use and public incentives in real estate transactions, I personally have not seen the government better equipped to work with the private sector than right now."
Jay Biggins, executive managing director, BLS & Co., discussed among other things the success of the Transit Hub program. This program has $915 million in approvals to date with 80% of those approvals happening in 2011.
The Choose NJ program helped keep executive vice president of The Hampshire Companies, Todd Anderson’s client, Realogy, in New Jersey. When Realogy’s CEO was ready to move his 1,300-person workforce to North Carolina, Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno stepped in to help keep these integral jobs in New Jersey. “There’s absolutely a spirit of cooperation. Before it was just ‘no,’ and now the administration is actually working with you and giving you options and ideas to work with various situations,” Anderson commented. “There’s a ways to go, but notwithstanding, it’s a new day.”