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Cornell Real Estate Review

Abstract

By the spring of 2012, the Williamsburg neighborhood of Brooklyn had already seen a dramatic transformation from an historically industrial riverfront district to one of the trendiest residential areas in New York’s five boroughs. The lingering effects of the Great Recession continued to stymie retailer confidence on a broad basis, but sophisticated retailers were once again beginning to plan expansions. RedSky Capital’s Ben Bernstein and Ben Stokes had been talking with the owner of a portfolio of contiguous storefronts encompassing an entire block along Bedford Avenue for five years, forming a strategy to redevelop the properties. RedSky’s dream for the site wouldn’t have come to fruition without a bold vision to bring the first Apple store to Brooklyn or negotiations with Apple’s high-power corporate real estate team in Cupertino, California.

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