Name: Ericka Keller
Company: Brisa Builders Development LLC
What was your greatest professional accomplishment in 2019?
Our greatest accomplishment in 2019 would be collaborating with colleagues to propose a NYC public high school focused on the real estate industry. Working as a cohesive unit we support the New York City Imagine Schools Initiative in creating and designing an inclusive program for the NYC school system. This initiative includes multi- learning pathways and internships that fully support a students’ desire and interest in the real estate industry, mapping out a clear path for students from varying backgrounds, ideally paving the best way forward for a successful career in the industry.
What are your predictions for commercial real estate in 2020?
2020 will be a year to focus on providing high quality affordable housing for the most vulnerable populations in the city. Brisa Builders will continue to embrace the challenges in affordable housing projects as we aspire to meet the demand for affordable living in New York City. We are proposing three projects, two that will provide supportive housing and one senior housing with a frail elderly component. Our goal is to preserve the cultural diversity and affordability of neighborhoods facing rapid gentrification which may disproportionately displace seniors and low-income families, and special need populations.
What was your most notable project, deal, or transaction in 2019?
Our most notable project is the closing of Ebenezer Plaza Phase 1b. Ebenezer Plaza includes 531 units of affordable housing with 40,000 s/f of community facility space and 25,000 s/f of commercial /retail divided into three separate construction phases. Ebenezer Plaza is divided into four structures that rise to 11 stories, each wrapping around a rear landscaped yard. The residential unit mix includes 0,1,2 and 3 bedrooms distributed based on the ELLA term sheet by NYC HPD. Construction of Phases 1a began in June 2018 and 1b in June 2019 of the three phased projects. Its green design features will enhance the neighborhood fabric as well as site environmental improvements. By using low emitting materials and improving indoor ventilation, the buildings will have enhanced indoor environmental quality – one of our top priorities.