J. Philip Commercial Helps Bring Chicken Island Brewing to Yonkers Waterfront

Jennifer Maher
Jennifer Maher, Broker, J. Philip Commercial Group

J. Philip Commercial Group Brokerage of Westchester County completed the sale of 72 Alexander Street in the city of Yonkers for $1.25 million. The Fondak Family, new owners of the property, plan to convert the 10,000+ sq. ft. industrial warehouse facility into a beer distribution center and taphouse tasting room. With plans for a future event space and restaurant, the new establishment will be named Chicken Island Brewing.

The waterfront in Yonkers is booming right now,” said Jennifer Maher, selling broker for J.Philip Commercial Group. “Thanks to strategic marketing campaigns supported by Mayor Spano, both businesses and residents, particularly the coveted millennial generation, are taking a second look at the city to live, work and play. The timing and opportunity for Chicken Island Brewing to establish itself in Yonkers couldn’t be better,” added Maher.

Co-owner and Brewmaster, Andy Fondak says, “The Yonkers location is the perfect storm for us.  Craft breweries have always thrived in areas ripe for revitalization.  They bring communities together, and our brewery is no different.”

With the local government focusing on revitalizing the downtown waterfront Chicken Island Brewing logoarea, Fondak believes his brewery will make a positive contribution to those efforts.  “The specific building we are planning to renovate is in a great location with outdoor seating potential next to the Metro North Hudson line and views of the Palisades and Hudson River across the street.  We are grateful to Jennifer Maher and J. Philip Commercial Group for helping us find and close on this ideal property. The location is easy to get to.  Only a 5-minute walk from the Metro North Yonkers station or a quick drive from northern Bronx, will put you right in front of our doors.  All of these factors made the choice very apparent — 72 Alexander Street will be the perfect spot for Chicken Island Brewing.”



Can Eco Tourism Boost Putnam County’s Economy?

We have only a handful of hotel rooms.  Our commerce districts are relatively small and often overlooked.   But Putnam County has a vast ecological, historical and cultural resource within commutation distance of New York City, potentially making us an ideal ecotourism destination for the millions of people to our south.

Given the undeveloped nature of our county,  a form of tourism which focuses on the observation and appreciation of nature as well as the traditional cultures prevailing in natural areas would seem very appealing. According to the World Tourism Organization, ecotourism is often designed around small group tours, contains educational and interpretation features, and usually involves small, locally owned businesses as service providers.  It minimizes negative impacts on the natural and socio-cultural environment.  It supports the maintenance of natural areas which are used as ecotourism attractions and increases awareness towards the conservation of natural and cultural assets, among local residents and tourists alike.

This sounds very attractive for Putnam County, a type of tourism which can take full advantage of our natural resources and beauty, highlight our cultural centers and historic artifacts, and support our family owned, small business community which is the majority of our local economy.   We could properly integrate the ecotourism concept with our existing infrastructure and fully utilize our trails, commuter rail networks, area roadways and any future development (i.e. hotels, shopping complexes, etc) to better facilitate the ecotourism experience for visitors.

The business community will also have to adapt to take full advantage of this concept.  Business advertising, for example, might start saying things like “convenient access to trail system”, “located close to scenic reservoir views” or “adjacent to monastery” in order to convey the proper message to attract this type of tourist.  We need to find more ways to make people choose Putnam, and this may just be the way to do it!

-Jennifer Maher, Chairwoman, the Putnam County Chamber of Commerce

Award Nominations Open For The 2016 Trailblazers

Each year we nominate the best and brightest in the Putnam County business and nonprofit community for a series of awards to recognize their dedication and achievements.  In March 2017 we will host the 7th annual event to honor those chosen by their peers during the selection process, known as the “Best in Business” Trailblazer Awards.

This year there are 18 categories to choose from, in an online survey available on the putnamchamberny.org website.  They are:  Company of the Year, Best “New” Company of the Year (must have been started in 2016), Most Innovative Company, Best Company Comeback, Most “Socially Responsible or Environmentally Friendly” Company, Most “Customer Friendly” Company, Best Company to Work For, Best Law Firm, Best Advertising/Marketing Company, Best Not-For- or Nonprofit Company, Best CEO/Executive, Best Sales Executive, Best Entrepreneur/Founder, Best Innovator, Best Marketing Campaign of the Year, Best Business Web Site, Best Social Media Campaign of the Year, and Best Restauranteur.

As you can see there are many awards recognizing a wide swath of companies/organizations and a vast array of talent.  Putnam County is only as good as its business community and community organizations, and the dedicated people who make things happen every day.  This is our chance to recognize them.

So save the date!  The Best in Business Trailblazer Awards will be given at Villa Barone on March 2, 2017 from 6-9PM.  Sponsorships are available ranging from $500 to $5000, so please consider getting in early and maximizing your exposure and recognition through this marquee, countywide event.  There will also be a printed program for the evening, with various sized ads available.  For more information on sponsorships, program advertising, or nomination of award candidates please call me at (914) 330-7222 visit www.putnamchamberny.org or for info on chamber membership call President/CEO Bill Nulk at (845) 225-8595, or email info@putnamchamberny.org .


-Jennifer Maher, Chairwoman, the Putnam County Chambers of Commerce

Putting The Business Community First

The Putnam Valley Business Network has been about 2 years in the making, during a period of 3-4 years where the community has been without a strong local business group.    I was proud to asked to be a keynote speaker along with Town Supervisor Sam Oliverio at their first networking evening at Char Steakhouse.


The Putnam County Chamber of Commerce (PCC) was formed 7 years ago because of towns like Putnam Valley. Putnam Valley is a rural, spread out town with many service and home based businesses and a minimally-defined commercial district.  A major mission of the PCC has been to enhance the existing commercial districts and to create new ones to support what’s already been built.   The Putnam Valley Business Network and PCC can be mutually supportive in helping entrepreneurs and small businesses from the agricultural based businesses to the Mary Kay providers that are located in the town. We may not have the commercial base of say, White Plains, but our business community is large and needs the opportunities for networking and exposure that the PVBN can provide.


We moved here to Putnam County because we were attracted to the lack of commercialism and natural beauty. The task now is to figure out how to preserve this while adapting to the new economy so we can live, work and play where we chose to be. We need infrastructure, (water and sewer), and a name-brand hotel.  Through partnerships the PCC and PVBN can work together to ensure that Putnam Valley is not ignored!!  The county Chamber is proud to be partners with most of the business organizations throughout the County and will continue to encourage local business groups to work together for a better business climate in Putnam County. Many of our commerce districts are blighted and nor thriving. It’s time to band together and put into action a plan that will solve our infrastructure issues and move our county forward.


For more information on how you can get involved call the Putnam County Chamber of Commerce at (845) 228-8595 or visit putnamchamberny.org .


-Jennifer Maher, Chairwoman, the Putnam County Chamber of Commerce

The Year of Business Development 2016

Soc-feature-imageAs your passionate local advocate for area businesses and entrepreneurs, the Putnam County Chamber of Commerce is excited that County Executive Maryellen Odell has proclaimed 2016 the Year of Business Development.

Her actions will place an all-important focus on the need to push forward with an aggressive agenda to not only identify areas to improve the business climate but to implement practical strategies to get things done and achieve tangible results.
We have 2 events coming up to plan and implement this concept.  First, a discussion of the Putnam County Chamber’s legislative priorities at  a lunch meeting – Tuesday, April 5th, 11:30 -1:00 pm at Cornerstone Park in Carmel, open to all in the business community.   Later in the month, there will be annual Elected Officials’ forum Sunday, April 17, from 1 to 3, pm, also at Cornerstone Park.

At these meetings, we hope to lay the foundation for all the work that needs to be done, in order to drive economic development forward. The list of priorities is, but not limited to the following:  Infrastructure, identifying shovel ready projects, filling commercial vacancies, developing a healthy business climate by developing our workforce, improving public transportation and steering legislative priorities, getting on the radar for NYS Economic development project opportunities, and opposing New York State mandates.

We must act.  The chamber is going to be inviting the heads of the Economic team to the table; EDC, IDA, Tourism, Legislative reps and the local chambers to have a frank conversation on what we need to do to get our economic development into high gear.  With the state’s seemingly antibusiness quest for a “Campaign for Economic Justice” and the dramatic presidential campaign making the Federal future uncertain, it is more important than ever to dig deep locally and get things done!
For more information please visit www.putnamchamberny.org or call President/CEO Bill Nulk at (845) 228-8595.

-Jennifer Maher, Chairwoman, the Putnam County Chamber of Commerce

We Work and Other Shared-Office Providers Aiming to Reinvent How Office Leasing Works

GetImage.aspxOne overlooked story of the tech- and energy-fueled recovery and expansion in U.S. office markets is the rising role of WeWork and other shared office providers, which have emerged as the largest single companies occupying newly leased office space.

New York City-based WeWork, the co-working startup firm which recently made headlines when its latest round of fundraising implied a valuation of $16 billion, is the tenant in 70 direct office leases totaling 4.63 million square feet, according to CoStar data. In New York City, where WeWork was founded in 2010, the company has signed 20 leases totaling more than 2.1 million square feet. ….. [read more]