Westchester County Business Buzz (4/1)

One of New York’s largest park donations, ground breaking in Mount Vernon, and more news from the world of Westchester business this week.

Rockefeller Donates $4 Million to Rockefeller State Park Preserve

Fans of Pleasantville’s 1,400-acre Rockefeller State Park Preserve will be pleased to hear of its recent boost in funding from its namesake family. David Rockefeller has donated $4 million to create an operating endowment to support the park, according to a recent announcement from Gov. Andrew Cuomo. The donation is being called one of the largest ever to New York’s park system. The endowment will support environmental programming, capital improvement projects, stewardship initiatives, and maintenance of the park’s historic carriage roads and stone arch bridges, which were built by John D. Rockefeller Jr.

Related: 27 Westchester Parks You Will Instantly Fall In Love With

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“My family has been deeply engaged in the creation of parks throughout this country for more than a century. Our beautiful state park system is an important asset that distinguishes the greatness of New York State and we are proud to have played a role in its development,” Rockefeller said in a statement. “It is my hope that this contribution will make Rockefeller State Park Preserve more accessible and enjoyable for everyone.”

New TOD Development Breaks Ground in Mount Vernon

With a groundbreaking event last week, MacQuesten Development LLC and New York State Homes and Community Renewal are one step closer to launching a new $31.5 million mixed-use, transit-oriented development for downtown Mount Vernon. The Modern, to be built on an underutilized former industrial area, will include 80 affordable rental apartments and approximately 9,400 square feet of commercial and office space on the first two floors. Construction began this past December. An opening is scheduled for fall 2016.

A rendering of The Modern, a transit-oriented development planned for construction in Mount Vernon.

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The site is within short walking distance of the Mount Vernon West Metro-North station, in an area of the city that is transitioning from industrial and commercial uses to mixed-use residential. The Modern is expected to create more than 200 construction jobs, and, when complete, more than 100 permanent jobs on site. “We are particularly excited about this project because it will serve as a catalyst for the creation of a sustainable neighborhood in which people can live, work, and have easy access to services and mass transit,” said Rella Fogliano, president of MacQuesten. “As a mixed-use project, The Modern will bring expanded activity and new focus to this strategically important area of the city.”

Pictured here are some of the graduates of the The Hudson Valley Workforce Academy inaugural session.

WCA’s Hudson Valley Workforce Academy Graduates First Class

The Hudson Valley Workforce Academy was launched in January 2015 by the Westchester County Association (WCA) to address a critical workforce skills gap in the region—and now the first crop of students has completed the inaugural session, a five-week pilot course in healthcare analytics. WCA Academy marked the occasion last week with a special graduation ceremony featuring WCA partners and local leaders including Deputy County Executive Kevin Plunkett.

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“It’s so important in Westchester to have a trained and competent workforce,” Plunkett said. “We call Westchester County the intellectual capital of the world, and what better place to start than the healthcare industry.”

Plunkett and Pat Keegan, district director for Congresswoman Nita Lowey, commended the class for furthering their education. “Today’s jobs require skills that can be applied across the board,” added Amy Allen, executive director of the Hudson Valley Workforce Academy and vice president of the WCA. “That means we need workers with technological abilities who possess soft skills as well. Through our collaborative partnerships between regional stakeholders in education, healthcare, and business, we are upgrading the skills of our existing workforce, and further developing the talent pool in the region.”

Flexible Workspace Provider Regus Opens At Ridge Hill

Regus, the world’s largest provider of flexible workspaces, is now officially open for business at Westchester’s Ridge Hill in Yonkers. The new Regus center occupies 15,636 square feet at 73 Market Street (in the WESTMED building), offering flexible office space and meeting rooms to meet the demands of Westchester’s entrepreneurs and burgeoning small business enterprises.

“Regus is very excited to be opening its first business center in Yonkers,” said Maria Paitchel, Regus’ regional vice president. “Growing customer demand prompted us to add this location, which provides easy access to New York City and other cities throughout Westchester County.”

Regus offers customizable workspaces for businesses of any size. Fully furnished offices, meeting rooms, business lounges, and community spaces are available for any amount of time; a receptionist, administrative team, and tech support are standard services in each center. Regus’ Businessworld memberships provide access to the company’s 1,200 signature drop-in business lounges, offering complimentary WiFi along with coffee and tea.

From left: Al Gutierrez of Colliers International, Glenn Walsh of NGKF, James Rittman of NGKF, Jack Pancaldo of All American Realty, and Bruce Wenig of Rakow Commercial Realty

Top Brokers Gather At Purchase Professional Park

More than 40 commercial real estate brokers were on hand for a broker breakfast held March 10 at the Purchase Professional Park in Purchase. The Park has emerged as a hotspot for medical practices on what has become known as Westchester’s “medical mile.” Situated on Westchester Avenue, the 13-acre campus features three modern buildings (3000, 3010 and 3020 Westchester Avenue) totaling 135,000 square feet of class-A medical and professional space. It is also home to the recently completed 85,000-square-foot headquarters for WESTMED Medical Group. Simone Development Companies is the developer and manager of the complex. The exclusive leasing agent for the Purchase Professional Park is Newmark Grubb Knight Frank (NGKF).

Our Westchester Home Design Awards event is June 26!

Our Wine & Food Festival returns June 4-9!

Our Wunderkinds event takes place on May 23!

Our Best of Business Ballot is open through May 15!

Our Healthcare Heroes Awards event takes place on May 9!

Our Westchester Home Builders Awards take place on April 4!

Our Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Forum is March 14!

Unveiled: A Boutique Bridal Brunch is February 25!

Our Best of Westchester Elimination Ballot is open through March 6!

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