How We Help Real Estate & Community Developers
We understand that in today’s environment, real estate developers must demonstrate the capacity to benefit local communities and residents—particularly with job opportunities.
We help developers identify the right community engagement strategies, develop employment and training opportunities, and create the kind of successful workforce partnerships that lead to essential project support.
It is our hands-on experience running workforce development systems in the public sector, and administering programs like HireNYC, that enables Public Works Partners to help developers design and implement the right program for each community.
Workforce Engagement Strategy for East Harlem Development
A national developer won a publicly RFP’d site in East Harlem, but still needed to secure zoning changes. They engaged Public Works Partners to create strategies to engage local residents in job opportunities associated with building and operating the project. We leveraged our extensive experience managing the publicly-funded workforce system and advising community-based organizations to build out a strategy that meets the needs of the local community, satisfies the requirements of the City’s local hiring mandates, and made sense for the developer’s bottom line. We designed a comprehensive set of workforce investment and community engagement strategies tied to different phases of the project. The developer was able to move forward into community meetings with a thoughtful strategy in mind, which allowed them to build positive, collaborative relationships with local stakeholders from the outset of the project as they seek public approval for zoning changes.
Increasing Linkages Between Developers and Local Job Seekers
Building Skills NY, a workforce development organization affiliated with the affordable housing and real estate industries, provides targeted recruitment to connect job seekers and developers and effectively place local residents in open construction jobs for new projects. When BSNY moved to significantly increase the scale of its work, they asked Public Works to help them plan to get it done. We assessed their current operations, goals for future outcomes and available resources. We then helped to re-design their service model and suggested an organizational structure to accommodate their planned growth. Crucially, we developed a customer relationship management (CRM) system to track job seekers, BSNY’s relationships with community partners and employers, and available job openings. These operational enhancements will help ensure BSNY can effectively serve both jobseekers and construction companies with openings as the program grows.
Strategies for Developing a Mixed-Use (Industrial-Residential) Project
As part of a proposed rezoning from industrial to a mix of residential and industrial, a developer in Brooklyn engaged Public Works to explore groundbreaking strategies for creating manufacturing job opportunities on-site. We identified the most compatible business types in a mixed-use setting. We also leveraged our knowledge of local nonprofits to broker linkages with community-based job training and economic development organizations as partners in the process. These organizations were essential in demonstrating to local elected and planning officials that manufacturing spaces would remain affordable for businesses, and that industrial job opportunities are accessible to local residents.
Business Census and Comprehensive Plan
Long Island City, one of the largest industrial areas in NYC, is being transformed by new residential development. The Long Island City Partnership engaged us to study the challenges to local businesses and arts organizations in the face of these changes. We conducted a real estate market analysis to understand baseline conditions. We supplemented this information with stakeholder focus groups and surveys to understand how to balance a variety of local stakeholders needs in this dynamic neighborhood, and to make specific recommendations to planning and economic development officials to proactively balance these needs to preserve LIC’s vibrant mix of uses.
Community Development Entity and New Market Tax Credit
Public Works has evaluated the impact of completed and pipelined development projects funded by USBCDE’s annual allocation of Federal New Markets Tax Credits. Public Works has conducted one-on-one interviews with representatives of funded projects to qualify and quantify the economic benefits that these development projects brought to their to communities. We synthesize this information, which then supports USBCDE’s application for subsequent NMTC allocations.
Real Estate & Community Developer Clients
- AvalonBay Communities, Inc
- Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce
- Chinatown Partnership
- Community Solutions
- Credit Do
- Enterprise Community Partners
- Hudson Yards Development Corporation
- Long Island City Partnership
- Queens Economic Development Corporation
- Real Estate Board of New York
- Southwest Brooklyn Industrial Development Corporation
- Staten Island Economic Development Corporation
- Times Square Alliance
- US Bank Community Development Corp.