Thursday, June 23, 2016

Marketing opportunity: a (smaller) Barclays Center roof logo returns, stealthily

From video via PacificParkBk
Oh, they weren't going to give up that valuable marketing real estate, were they?

A new Barclays Center logo for the arena roof (see screenshot at right) was not in any preparatory public renderings (see below left) of the recently installed green roof, but it's apparently too valuable an advertising space.

Indeed, as construction of the green roof began, Forest City Ratner's Bob Sanna told the 4/26/15 Wall Street Journal, “We are thinking up creative ways to keep the logo…We just haven’t decided where.”

Since then, around the end of the year, Forest City transferred its 55% interest in the arena operating company to minority owner Onexim, controlled by Mikhail Prokhorov.\
From April 2014 rendering by SHoP

The green roof was paid for by the new joint venture Greenland Forest City Partners, aiming to make the arena view more palatable to residents in nearby towers and to tamp down noise escaping from the venue. Surely the logo was also negotiated with Prokhorov.

Brooklyn's newest neighborhood?

It's a wee bit odd to call this "Brooklyn's newest neighborhood."

After all, the brief video, in link at bottom, shows only the finished 461 Dean Street modular tower flanking the arena, and ignores the adjacent, under-construction B2 (aka 38 Sixth Avenue) tower, which is shown in the full photo below.

Earlier version; click to enlarge
But the video, apparently shot by a drone, seems mainly a marketing device.

Smaller signage

The new signage, while quite visible from the sky and thus TV cameras on helicopters or blimps (see below), is smaller and thus less glaring than than the predecessor signage, which had a larger Barclays logo (see photo at right).

Used by permission from David Margolis of SkyviewSurvey.com. Copyright SkyviewSurvey.com.
As I wrote 4/10/13, the original Barclays logo on the roof had not been shown in renderings when the project was re-approved, and roof signage was never addressed in the Design Guidelines, approved in 2006, which addressed facade signage only.

Empire State Development, the state authority overseeing the project said, essentially, if ain't prohibited, it's permitted. Executive Arana Hankin noted that, among other things, the "sign is not illuminated" and it "cannot be seen from street-level."

Actually, while the sign was not aimed at those on the street, and not fully visible, it sure could be seen in part, as shown in the photo below. The new signage is not visible from the street, as far as I can tell.

Changing plans

Last September, Forest City CEO MaryAnne Gilmartin said the original plan for an arena green roof "needed to be value-engineered...We built the arena, it's a rubber roof, originally, with Barclays' logo on top of it, quite uninspired, and you can see it from a number of vantage points around the area." In other words, she contradicted Hankin.

"So it was a lost opportunity to some of us, but we never let go of this idea we could go back again one day and put a green roof on top," Gilmartin continued. "It really doesn't benefit the arena, it benefits the community and the residents that will live around the arena."

You bet it benefits the arena, I wrote at the time, since the green roof would help with needed noise and vibration dampening.

Now we know that the roof also benefits benefits the arena with another marketing opportunity.

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