Archive for February 5th, 2013
Noun, informal. A decent, upright, mature and responsible person.
Noun, slang. An awkward, clumsy, or unlucky person whose endeavors tend to fail; a loser.
Mensch of the Week:
Robert A.M. Stern, FAIA
Llenrock’s Mensch of the Week is often a newcomer to the industry spotlight, perhaps a successful dealmaker or newly promoted executive. But today’s Mensch, Robert A.M. Stern, is already a fairly illustrious figure thanks to numerous industry awards, a nationally recognized architecture firm, and his role as dean of the architecture school at some place called “Yale.”
So, being our Mensch of the Week isn’t exactly Mr. Stern’s big break. Even so, his integral role in designing the Philadelphia Navy Yard development, a sprawling mixed-use campus in South Philadelphia, deserves recognition.
The Navy Yard has been a much-needed success story for Philadelphia’s generally stagnant office market. This enormous, ultra-modern, sustainability-focused project has weathered a recession, real estate downturn, and resulting challenges in the investment world. Still, it has succeeded in drawing out-of-town companies like Urban Outfitters to the city. Years later, the project continues to grow.
To a great extent, the office/industrial/flex campus has succeeded because of the adaptability of its development partners–the Philadelphia Industrial Development Corp. (PIDC), Liberty Property Trust (NYSE: LRY) and Synterra Partners.
Without this flexibility, the Navy Yard may have faced the same fate as numerous other projects throughout the country, which were stalled, canceled, or reduced in scope due to the recession’s challenging fundamentals. Many once-promising projects couldn’t adjust to the very different CRE market that emerged from the economic downturn.