Industry Veteran Schwartz to Head Marketing Effort for Former Pfizer Campus in Rockland County
John Jordan | November 4, 2021
PEARL RIVER—Industrial Realty Group (IRG), the owner of the former Pfizer complex in Pearl River, has rebranded the property as the “Hudson Valley iCampus” and has hired commercial real estate veteran Jamie Schwartz to head the marketing effort to lease and develop new space on the campus.
Schwartz, who had spent the past 18 years as executive vice president of GHP Office Realty, LLC in White Plains, has been named president of the Hudson Valley iCampus, a two-million-square-foot mixed-use, multi-tenanted campus on 207 acres. The campus was sold by Pfizer, Inc. in 2015 to Industrial Realty Group, LLC, a Los Angeles-based real estate development and investment firm that owns more than 100 million square feet of commercial property across the U.S. The site is managed by its affiliate, IRG Realty Advisors, LLC, which is headquartered in Richfield, OH.
Schwartz’s appointment was the result of an extensive executive search for the leadership role at the campus, IRG Realty Group states. He has already begun a major rebranding effort, renaming the property “Hudson Valley iCampus.” It was previously the New York Center for Innovation. Schwartz also is responsible for reintroducing the property to current and prospective tenants and to brokers, as well as building and leading a strong management and operations team. Additionally, Schwartz will be planning and executing a development strategy for the vast amount of buildable land at the site.
“We’re thrilled Jamie decided to continue his very successful career at our Hudson Valley iCampus,” said Stuart Lichter, president and chairman of IRG. “His experience, accomplishments and reputation in the marketplace as well as his relationships in the community have already had a positive impact.”
Schwartz said that there is currently approximately 1.5 million square feet of space available for lease at Hudson Valley iCampus. He noted that his firm is looking at potentially developing or joint venturing on approximately 30 acres of available land at the moment. Those parcels could accommodate up to two, 180,000-square-foot buildings. At present, those parcels are zoned for Light Industrial, Laboratory-Office or Light-Industrial-Office use.
At GHP Office Realty, Schwartz was responsible for the leasing, management and construction of GHP’s multimillion-square-foot office, flex, warehouse and retail portfolio. Schwartz also managed GHP’s third-party broker representation and was an integral part of the acquisitions, sales and debt-placement teams. Throughout his career, he has negotiated and closed new lease, renewal, acquisition and sales deals worth more than $1.5 billion comprising approximately eight million square feet. Schwartz also is an experienced attorney specializing in commercial real estate transactions, litigation and entertainment law.
“Although I was not looking to make a career move, when I was approached for this position it presented a unique opportunity for me to combine all of my professional experience with the forward-thinking leadership that is the hallmark of IRG,” said Schwartz. “I’m looking forward to collaborating with all of the stakeholders to successfully lead an exciting new chapter for the property.”
Hudson Valley iCampus tenants include Pfizer, Inc.; RK Pharma, Inc.; Sanofi US Services, Inc.; Iris Biogen Corp.; and Urban Electric Power, Inc. The property also features a 23-megawatt Central Utility Plant that provides electricity, steam and chilled water to the tenants and also to the buildings Pfizer’s owns. Schwartz said that the power plant is a huge benefit since tenant’s utility costs are lower as compared to if they purchased the power from the public utility.
The campus has previously served as Lederle Laboratories’ R&D, laboratory, manufacturing and headquarters, dating to the early 1900s. The property was later transferred to Wyeth Pharmaceuticals. Pfizer acquired Wyeth and the original 240-acre property in 2009 and sold 207 acres and 25 buildings to IRG in 2015. Pfizer currently occupies approximately 850,000 square feet on 33 contiguous acres it owns.