Archive for the ‘Our Team’ Category

Meet Patricia

In Our Team on April 13, 2011 at 11:09 am

I’ve known for a while that CityRetail’s bandwidth is significantly limited with just Dave and I running the show and I’ve thought hard over the past six months about the type of person we need to bolster the team.  Conventional wisdom suggests that I should bring on someone with extensive retail real estate experience but for now I’m going in another direction…

What CityRetail needs now is another entrepreneur – someone who appreciates and understand how we have created new space in the marketplace and somebody who understand that space. I want someone who has run their own small business; someone who understands the entrepreneurs and businesses we are working on deals with. The real estate and leasing stuff can be taught; what I nor anybody else can do is teach what it’s like to actually run a restaurant and make your living accordingly.

Patricia Woodard is the Patty in “Mike & Patty’s,” a sandwich shop in Boston’s Bay Village neighborhood. Mike & Patty’s is good; really good. It’s the number one rated restaurant on Yelp! Boston and it’s a local favorite.  Patricia recently (and on very good terms with Mike) left Mike & Patty’s and when I met with her earlier this year to talk about her transition we realized that CityRetail might be a great place for her to land.  We spent much of Feb and March talking about how this could work, Patricia took her real estate exam (and passed in flying colors!) and now we are off and running.

Patricia’s experiences have ranged from food writer to cheese buyer to cook. She’s been working in restaurants for all of her adult life and she’ll bring this experience to CityRetail, where she’ll continue working with restaurants and cafes. She’ll bring a new lens for us to look through at CityRetail and I’m super excited about it.

Look Good, Feel Good

In Our Team on March 29, 2010 at 1:39 pm

Alex and I have been spending some time of late working on the CityRetail website, signage and likeness. Thom Long at visionLaboratory is our go to on projects like this. Thom’s team also did the window wrap design for Evoo/Za, Watermark website and Twining Properties website.  For CityRetail, we are putting together a signage package that will be unique, identifiable and have some sort of rational nexus to the property in which the signs hang (this is signage we’ll install in properties that we are leasing).  Here’s a sneak peek at an early draft:

The idea is to have block signage that combines CityRetail logo, contact info, interesting facts relating to neighborhood, suggested uses, etc.  These blocks can be mixed-and-matched. Further, we can leave holes in the overall scheme (leave one or two blocks out) so folks can see into the retail space, as I’m not a big fan of first floor signage that completely masks windows and doesn’t allow any lines of sight into the property.

We’ve already made a bunch of tweaks to above draft plan but I’d love some feedback. Shoot me a note: or post a comment herein.

Meet Dave

In Our Team on February 8, 2010 at 10:57 pm

In my first post on this blog I wrote about how CityRetail came to be. What I neglected to mention was my first assignment: to find another team member. By way of Leroy Watkins, founder and owner of MyBike, I was introduced to Dave Downing and my search stopped there.

Dave has played a key role in every retail deal we have worked on over the past couple of years.  In addition to retail, Dave is very much involved in the redevelopment and programing of Broad Canal. When spring comes and Cambridge finally has it’s public boat launch to the Charles River, kayak/canoe rentals and storage, bike rentals and segway tours, etc, Dave is one of the folks that should be thanked.  He has worked tirelessly with the Twining Properties team to coordinate and execute a range of initiatives here in Kendall Square. Dave’s a regular at Kendall Square Association events and East Cambridge Planning Team meetings. Dave has and will play a major role in CityRetail’s success in 2010 and I am delighted to be working with him.

Oh, and as a condition of posting a pic of Dave hereto, I promised him I’d post one of myself as well:

Ashling Construction & Post 390

In Our Team on January 19, 2010 at 11:50 pm

I had lunch today at Post 390 with Tom Clark and Phil Ruggiero of Ashling Construction.

First, about the restaurant… Post 390 is a new 14,000 sf (huge!) restaurant in a recently completed mixed-use development (retail, condo, apartments) on Clarendon Street in Boston’s Back Bay.  Ashling built the place and it’s an impressive space – two floors, two bars, two kitchens and private dinning areas. The restaurant is off to a good start and is a great use for a portion of the first and second floors of the building.

Second, about the meeting… (read more)

Read the rest of this entry »

Hello 2010

In General, Our Team on January 4, 2010 at 9:19 am

[t] CityRetail is born today, well, sort of…  Our story actually starts in 2007, when I was approached by Alex Twining, Neil Duncan and Brian Dacey of [t] Twining Properties and asked if I wanted to work on a “retail leasing project.”  My answer was yes.  Now, 30 or so months later, we have accomplished what we set out to do and developed an approach to retail leasing and place-making that is very exciting.  This blog will be about [t] CityRetail, small business, retail development and related news, ideas and thoughts.  Thanks for reading!