NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--25 Kent, Williamsburg’s newest office and manufacturing building, has signed fashion brand Kith as its anchor tenant. Kith will relocate its New York City-based operations—which includes production, design, front office and other supporting functions—from Manhattan to the newly opened Brooklyn building.
The first of its type in more than 50 years, 25 Kent—the privately developed mixed-use building on the Williamsburg waterfront—was viewed as an experiment when it launched in 2013, inasmuch as it was the first speculative development to offer both office and manufacturing space in the same building. Kith’s lease for a substantial portion of the manufacturing space affirms the viability of commercial/manufacturing buildings.
“When the opportunity to move our brand HQ into 25 Kent came up, I realized it was something that we had to do,” Kith Founder Ronnie Fieg said. “Creating a makerspace in Williamsburg embodies the ideals we hold as a brand that include creating inclusive and innovative experiences in new exciting surroundings. I’m looking forward to being on the precipice of a culture-shifting moment for Brooklyn.”
Kith will relocate from Soho to a 57,679-square-foot space in 25 Kent, occupying approximately two-thirds of 25 Kent’s 87,000 square feet of manufacturing space.
“25 Kent was designed as a new kind of workplace: a commercial ecosystem that reflects the dynamic nature of how companies work today,” said Jeff Fronek, the Director of Investments at Rubenstein Partners. “Today, we took a significant step towards realizing that vision. Kith brings an extremely high level of creative energy to the property, and we’re excited to announce them as our anchor tenant.”
Kith’s 75-person workforce is comprised of a diversified cross section of area residents, with a broad range of education, training and experience. To ensure area residents benefit from the opportunities created by Kith and all future tenants of 25 Kent, the building’s owners are working with area not-for-profits to create and operate a job training program that will match area residents with jobs.
“We are glad to hear about the new tenant moving into 25 Kent,” said Council Member Stephen Levin. “Having existing businesses like Kith relocate into North Brooklyn can only be good for the area. With a facility that will include production, retail and front office opportunities, we can look forward to new opportunities for local residents and continued proof that manufacturing is still a viable and needed business in the Brooklyn.”
“We are thrilled to welcome Kith to Brooklyn, and are heartened by the developer’s commitment to partner with non-profits to ensure local hiring. Their move underscores the fact that Brooklyn is an emerging capital of the innovation and creative economy, thanks to dynamic hubs like 25 Kent, the Brooklyn Navy Yard, and others. Brooklyn is open for business, and it’s companies like Kith that are helping to fuel its exciting growth,” said Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams.
“North Brooklyn has been home to a vibrant manufacturing industry. In recent years, North Brooklyn has also centered itself as a creative hub that inspires entrepreneurs,” said Assembly Member Joseph R. Lentol (D-North Brooklyn). “We know that small businesses are the economic backbone of our communities. Kith’s relocation to North Brooklyn is a win for the community as it will promote a clean manufacturing business and local jobs and help boost our neighborhood’s economy.”
Kith is one of the first luxury fashion and lifestyle brands to relocate from Manhattan to Brooklyn, a major win for New York’s effort to maintain its historic role as home to the garment industry. Other garment manufacturers who left Manhattan for Brooklyn include Lafayette 148 New York, a New York City-based global fashion brand, which relocated its 200-person design, sales, marketing, merchandising, retail, e-commerce operations and New York-based manufacturing functions to the Brooklyn Navy Yard, and fashion designer Nanette Lepore, who in 2018 announced plans to join Lafayette 148 at the Brooklyn Navy Yard’s Building 77.
Developed by a partnership of Rubenstein Partners and Heritage Equity Partners, 25 Kent is ideally located in a neighborhood that is young, vibrant and filled with entrepreneurs, artists and artisans, occupying a full block bounded by Wythe and Kent Avenues and North 12th and North 13th Streets, directly across the street from Bushwick Inlet Park, the city’s newest waterfront park, now underway.
A product of a collaboration between design development architect, Gensler, and designer Hollwich Kushner (HWKN) in collaboration with design development architect Gensler, this newly completed eight-story, 500,000-square-foot commercial office building is the first of its type erected in North Williamsburg in more than 40 years. It’s conceived to be a hub of innovation in which the tech, creative, design, production and light manufacturing industries can collaborate and grow together.
The building’s design—blending the area’s industrial past with its creative present, a mix of traditional brick and glass coupled with high ceilings to maximize light exposure—is critical to 25 Kent’s overall flow, aesthetic and function. The stacked, flexible layout provides modular space to entrepreneurs of all kinds, to allow for their growth from incubation through the full lifecycle of their development, while also providing larger, floor-length spaces to established companies.
Spaces within 25 Kent include floor-to-ceiling windows and terraces providing views of the East River and Manhattan skyline. The property features a ground-floor plaza and public art space that will be complete with shops and eateries, as well as underground parking, bike storage, showers and lockers.
Kith was represented by Michael Yadgard of Compass. The landlord was represented by Lee & Associates NYC and Jones Lang LaSalle.
About Rubenstein Partners
Rubenstein Partners, founded in September 2005, is a private real estate investment management and advisory firm with operations throughout the United States. The firm is led by its founder, David Rubenstein, and a group of senior real estate executives, and is focused on owning and managing office real estate equity and debt investments in the U.S. Rubenstein Partners’ predecessor company, The Rubenstein Company, LP and affiliates, founded in 1969, was one of the largest private owner operators of Class A office real estate in the Mid-Atlantic, owning and operating a portfolio of assets valued at approximately $1.2 billion at the time of its disposition in 2004. Since 2005, Rubenstein Partners has, on behalf of its investors and clients, invested in more than 22 million square feet of office real estate assets throughout the United States. For more information, visit www.rubensteinpartners.com.
About Heritage Equity Partners
Heritage Equity Partners has been in the real estate business since 2008, and has successfully completed the development of over 2 millions of square feet of residential and commercial space.