The culmination of a Bryan Cave pro bono project that dates back to 2008 was realized recently with the official opening of the Rockaway Waterfront Alliance’s Rockaway Institute for a Sustainable Environment (RISE). Planners anticipate that RISE will be a hub for community-based programs and cultural activities.

Formerly an abandoned firehouse, RISE now boasts a gallery to exhibit art, film and host live performances. The second floor has studio and lab space where emerging artists and scientists will lead community projects, lectures and classes through the Rockaway Waterfront Alliance’s programming for youth and local residents. It is hoped that RISE will help make the Rockaways, still rebuilding from Hurricane Sandy in 2012, a public tourist destination for the greater NYC community, bringing more economic development, jobs and resources.

Bryan Cave provided strategic, real estate, land use, environmental, and corporate assistance to Rockaway Waterfront Alliance Inc., a New York nonprofit corporation, in connection with its purchase and redevelopment of Engine Company 265, Ladder 121 Firehouse.

The firm’s extensive work included assisting with strategic negotiations with the city of New York; the acquisition of the firehouse and adjacent properties; the consummation of a construction loan and obtaining a state grant; and coordination of corporate support required in connection with this work.

The firm continues to assist the Rockaway Waterfront Alliance in connection with certain strategic, environmental, corporate and nonprofit governance matters and with branding strategy and U.S. trademark protection. The New York Bryan Cave team included CB Mobley (environmental and land use); Jeff Kaplan (real estate); Renee Frost, Rocio Chavez and Aaron Lang (corporate); and Patricia Werner and Adrienne Levin (IP).

Click here for more information on the Rockaway Institute for a Sustainable Environment.