Maryland firm tapped to shape Nassau Hub retail development

The developers planning the $1.5 billion remake of 70 acres around the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum have hired a design consultant to help shape and market the retail portion of the project.

Streetsense, a Bethesda, Md.-based “strategy and design collective,” has been chosen by developers RXR Realty and Onexim Entertainment Group, the leaseholder of the Coliseum site, to guide the “retail vision and strategy” for their proposed redevelopment of the property, also known as the Nassau Hub.

Besides guiding the design and marketing of the retail portion of the site, Streetsense is tasked with ensuring the development is complementary, not competitive to existing retail offerings in the market. Towards that end, the company says it will engage with area stakeholders, including distributing a survey to Hofstra University, to gather input on retail ne and preferences, as well as site design and connectivity of the Hub to nearby college campuses.

“This project is an opportunity to take the retail and placemaking expertise we’ve cultivated at Streetsense and apply it to a site with incredible potential,” Larisa Ortiz, managing director for research and analysis at Streetsense, said in a company statement. “Every community is unique and understanding the area today, and where it’s headed tomorrow, is key to creating a successful retail environment and sense of place for the long term. We’re honored to be a part of RXR’s vision.”

Ortiz, who’s firm Larisa Ortiz Associates was acquired by Streetsense in 2019, is heading up the Nassau Hub project.

Founded in 2001, Streetsense also has offices in Manhattan, where Ortiz is based, Washington D.C., Los Angeles and Madrid, Spain. Among its extensive design and marketing portfolio are restaurants, hotels, shopping centers, beverage brands and tourism locales. In 2017, CBRE purchased the entire brokerage division of Streetsense and 50 percent of its strategy and design operation.

Rebecca D’Eloia, senior vice president for development and project executive at RXR Realty said innovative retail offerings will sit at the heart of the Hub. 

“Creative, experiential retail serves as a crucial anchor in our vision to create a more walkable, dynamic Long Island that attracts talent, draws visitors, and acts as a model for what the suburbs of the future can be,” D’Eloia said in the statement. “We are grateful to Streetsense for helping bring this vision to life.”

The Nassau Hub project is proposed to include 500 units of housing, 600,000 square feet of office space, 200,000 square feet of restaurants and retail and a new hotel at the Uniondale site.

A conceptual master plan for the project was slated to be submitted to the Town of Hempstead last month. Pending approvals from the town, developers say they hope to begin construction on two parking structures in the project’s first phase in the first half of 2021.