Jared Kushner’s Quest To Speed Up the Internet
WiredNYC, a LEED-esque certification for buildings’ Internet connectivity, is operating out of Kushner Cos’ office, with the real estate mogul as its primary backer. He brought in a tenant broker and a tech entrepreneur to head up the program and change the way office tenants search for space and how landlords market their buildings.
We snapped former NGKF tenant rep Phil Kanfer doing all the work in Kushner's 666 Fifth Ave offices while tech/digital media vet Arie Barendrecht makes a play to be the face of the company. It all started when former Mayor Mike wanted to improve Internet access in NYC’s building stock. Jared, chatting with former NYCEDC head Seth Pinsky, liked the idea but thought it should be handled via the real estate community, and so Jared and the NYCEDC formed a partnership (you might say they went to Jared). Phil and Arie tell us the goals are to help tenants find the best-connected buildings, making connectivity as crucial a part of the office space decision as location, and to help owners market their buidlings and up their connectivity games (consulting is part of the company’s future model).
WiredNYC reached its first benchmark Sept. 30, when Bloomberg announced the launch of www.wiredscore.com. Owners of 190 buildings (115M SF) have taken the survey, and 50 already have achieved certification (Platinum, Gold, Silver, or Connected), which involves a visit from engineers to check out wires, points of entry, redundancy, and the like. The program is on pace to reach 500 certified buildings by next year and expand to other cities. Rudin’s 761k SF 1675 Broadway (which we snapped, above) has a Platinum rating. In fact, Michael Rudin is on WiredNYC’s board, along with Google Fiber head Milo Medin and folks from Time Warner Cable, Cisco, Betaworks, etc.