Bryn Mawr Film Institute Hosts Groundbreaking Ceremony for Final Phase of Construction

On March 13th, the Bryn Mawr Film Institute (BMFI) held a groundbreaking ceremony for the final phase of its development project.

In just eight years, BMFI has saved an architectural gem from destruction and transformed it into one of the nation’s top film institutions attracting filmmakers, patrons, and critics from around the world. They feature the best in internationally distributed first-run films along with independent, documentary, international, and repertory films and simulcast opera, concerts, ballet, and theater. These fine cinematic works are the nucleus around which the community development and educational programs revolve.  The existing facility is a 1926 movie theater which has undergone stabilization, restoration and renovation and is now ready for an expansion of two additional theaters – the focus for their final phase of development.

The construction, being overseen by AthenianRazak as Owner’s Representative, consists of a nearly 6,000 sq ft single story addition to the existing building as well as modifications to the existing restrooms and theaters.  The addition will include two new state of the art theaters with engineered acoustics and audio visual capabilities, featuring seating for 150 in each theater.  This phase of development will nearly double the facility’s capacity.  The existing facility will remain open during the construction. Once the new theaters are completed the two, old theaters will be completely renovated with new sprinklers, seats, restrooms, and improved access.

You can read more about BMFI and the construction project here or in an article from the Main Line Times about the groundbreaking ceremony.

Chris Strom Moderates Panel at DatacenterDynamics Converged Conference

Chris Strom, AthenianRazak’s Director of Project Development, recently moderated a panel at the Datacenter Dynamics Converged Conference in New York City. This highly-regarded session on Regional Resiliency and Superstorm Sandy addressed the regional challenges faced by critical environments in the aftermath of Sandy and examined models for managing regional resilience in the future.
The diverse panel explored how data center users and operators are facing regional risk and provided their perspectives on urban risk and how municipalities are responding. Panelists included:

  • Paul Hines, Vice President, Data Center Operations & Engineering, Sentinel Data Centers
  • Robert Bianco, Vice President / General Manager, TW Telecom
  • Tokumbo Shobowale, Chief Business Operations Officer, City of New York

Increasingly businesses are looking not only at the resilience of their infrastructure, but also the resilience of their supply chain – seeking non-regional suppliers for Diesel fuel for example – and working with their teams to make sure they have good working relationships with key partners during a disaster. At the Municipal level, New York City is undertaking a comprehensive effort to improve the resiliency and recovery time of core infrastructure, and shaping a plan to be released later this spring on how NYC will address resiliency in general as well as the specific challenges posted by climate change.

This session was covered in an article by Data Center Knowledge, which summarized the core takeaway from the session, “Data center operators must expand the scope of their disaster plans to adapt to larger and more intense storms, weighing contingencies that previously seemed unlikely.”
The DatacenterDynamics Converged Conference attracted more than 1,500 participants including those responsible for the design, build and operation of IT facilities as well as key IT decision makers.

AthenianRazak Senior Project Manager Participates in Historic Preservation Consulting Project

Janet Kimbleton Grace, a Senior Project Manager at AthenianRazak, recently participated in a historic renovation consulting project for federal review of the Casa Farnese in Philadelphia. This federally-mandated process, known as Section 106, ensures that any building improvements, in this case a proposed lobby addition, have no adverse effects on its designation as a National Landmark.

Janet consulted on this project through DOCOMOMO, a non-profit organization dedicated to the documentation and conservation of buildings, sites, and neighborhoods of the modern movement. Janet currently serves as President of the Greater Philadelphia Chapter of DOCOMOMO.

You can read more about the Casa Farnese project here.

Alan Razak Leads ULI Course on the Real Estate Development Process

From December 5 – 7, 2012, AthenianRazak Principal Alan Razak served as the principal instructor for an Urban Land Institute (ULI) workshop on the development process, which was offered to more than 50 real estate professionals.  The course provides an in-depth introduction to the language and practices in the development industry, covering three areas critical to understanding the development process, including:

  1. Preliminary considerations, market analysis, financial analysis, and strategic marketing
  2. Site selection and due diligence, land acquisition and deal structure, and entitlements and permitting
  3. Planning and design, construction management, and operations and property management

Alan, a respected thought leader in the industry, shared his insights from more than 35 years of working with public and private sector clients on complicated development and real estate projects.

The Real Estate Process I workshop will next be offered by ULI in June 2013. You can learn more here (, and find information about AthenianRazak’s development management expertise here (

Janet Kimbleton Grace Honored with CREW Philadelphia Legacy Leader Award

Janet Kimbleton Grace, Senior Project Manager at AthenianRazak, was recently recognized with the CREW Philadelphia Legacy Leader Award.  Janet received this well-deserved recognition for her work as a longtime CREW member who continues to stay involved with CREW Philadelphia and the commercial real estate community.  Janet is also the incoming president of CREW Philadelphia.

Jackie Buhn Attends Counselors of Real Estate Conference in Miami

Jackie Buhn, Principal of AthenianRazak, recently attended the Counselors of Real Estate Conference from October 14 – 17, 2012 in Miami.  While at the conference, she attended a session on Evolving Land Use in Cities., moderated by Patrick O. Mayberry of CRE and included presentations by Genevieve Cadwalader of the Bristol Group and Kenneth Browne of Urban Development Partners.  The session described two largely private projects under construction that have broader implications for urban re-development.

Continue reading “Jackie Buhn Attends Counselors of Real Estate Conference in Miami” »

Michael Brookshier Appointed to Greenbuild 2013 Community Engagement & Social Networking Committee

Michael Brookshier, Senior Project Manager at AthenianRazak, was recently appointed to the Greenbuild 2013 Community Engagement & Social Networking Committee. The committee seeks to increase the region’s awareness of the conference and to promote Philadelphia’s profile as a global center of sustainability and cultural vibrancy.  The world’s largest conference and expo dedicated to green building, Greenbuild will be held in Philadelphia in November 2013.

Michael joins more than 150 volunteers from across the region who will be working with the Delaware Valley Green Building Council to make Greenbuild 2013 in Philadelphia a success. Click here ( for more information.


Alan Razak Teaches ULI Course on Construction Fundamentals

On October 3-4, AthenianRazak Principal Alan Razak, a thought leader in the construction field, was in Washington DC to teach an Urban Land Institute (ULI) class on understanding the ins and outs of the construction process. Even though construction is an integral (and risky) part of the real estate development process, it is often not well understood by real estate professionals. Alan’s course is designed to help developers and other real estate professionals gain proficiency in managing the complex construction process. You can find more details here (

Lenfest Hall Featured in GRID Magazine for Its Green Practices

Lenfest Hall at the Curtis Institute of Music is featured in the October issue of GRID Magazine.  The article Cultural Shift – Philadelphia’s Institutions Embrace Green Building Practices focuses on how major arts and cultural institutions in the Philadelphia region, including Curtis, have embraced sustainable building and development.

AthenianRazak served as the Development Manager for this new student residence and education building, a major expansion for the Curtis Institute of Music. Lenfest Hall opened in September 2011 as a LEED Gold certified facility.

Click here ( to view the article in GRID Magazine.

To read more about our involvement, click here: []

Janet Kimbleton Grace serves as DOCOMOMO International Delegate

Janet Kimbleton Grace recently served as a delegate to the DOCOMOMO International Conference held in Finland.  DOCOMOMO is an acronym for the DOcumentation and COnservation of buildings, sites and neighborhoods of the MOdern MOvement. DOCOMOMO promotes the study, interpretation and protection of the architecture, landscape and urban design of this genre.

Continue reading “Janet Kimbleton Grace serves as DOCOMOMO International Delegate” »