ULI Pittsburgh - Adapting Commercial to Residential Buildings


2023-05-23T08:00:00 - 2023-05-23T10:00:00

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    GBBN Will open in a new window 5411 Penn Ave Pittsburgh, PA 15206 UNITED STATES


    Pricing Members Non-Members
    All Types $25.00 $40.00

    Event Description

    Most cities in the country are endeavoring to convert underutilized commercial buildings into residential space. This panel will tackle the challenges of adaptive reuse from a cross-section of stakeholders who have completed and are pursuing conversions.


    • Discuss project superpowers and Achilles Heels - what worked great, what didn’t work, and what do you wish you would have known?
    • Are conversions from commercial to residential possible and affordable?
    • Review the landscape in Pittsburgh for the practical execution of this form of adaptive reuse.

    GBBN 5411 Penn Ave Pittsburgh, PA 15206 UNITED STATES

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    Lena Andrews

    Vice President of Real Estate Development, ACTION-Housing Inc.

    Lena Andrews is the Vice President of Real Estate Development with ACTION-Housing where she leads the real estate development group creating community-driven affordable housing in complex urban settings throughout the Pittsburgh region. Prior to her tenure at ACTION, Lena managed planning for Pittsburgh’s Urban Redevelopment Authority. Lena is passionate about building diverse, vibrant connected urban communities. She is a member of the advisory board of the City of Pittsburgh’s Housing Opportunity Fund and a board member of Pittsburgh Arts and Lectures, Jewish Residential Services, and Laurentian Hall. In her free time, Lena enjoys traveling, reading, running, practicing yoga, and cleaning up her neighborhood as the organizer of the East Liberty Trash Warriors. She has a bachelor’s degree in economics from Dartmouth College and a master’s degree in public policy from Carnegie Mellon University.


    Beth Eckenrode

    AUROS Group

    Beth Eckenrode is co-founder of AUROS Group which merges building science and data science to cost effectively reach zero energy, zero carbon and healthy indoor air quality. AUROS Group's secret sauce lies in their proprietary integrated digital twin technology which demonstrates if a building is performing as it was designed and constructed to perform. Beth is co-author of the new book, the Power of Existing Buildings and is certified in many building performance standards.


    Lenny Klehr

    Vice Chairman, Lubert-Adler, L.P.

    Leonard Klehr is Vice Chairman of Lubert-Adler Partners, L.P., a private equity real estate firm headquartered in Philadelphia, PA. He focuses his efforts on the acquisition of and investment in distressed real estate, distressed debt, work out solutions, and problem loans. Mr. Klehr is also a member of the Investment Committee. Mr. Klehr was a founding partner of the Philadelphia law firm, Klehr, Harrison, Harvey, Branzburg where he practiced law for thirty years. He concentrated his practice on bankruptcy, insolvency, and loan workouts on behalf of banks and financial institutions throughout the United States. He had an active practice in mergers and acquisitions and private equity transactions. Mr. Klehr received a B.A. degree from Franklin and Marshall College (Lancaster, PA) in 1972. He holds a J.D. degree from Temple University School of Law (1976), where he presently serves as a member of the Board of Visitors.


    Frank Leonello

    Franjo Construction

    Frank Leonello serves as the Chief Executive Officer of Franjo Construction and a Managing Director of each of its affiliates: Franjo Restoration and Franjo Builders. The name “Franjo” is the combination of Frank's and his brothers' names – Frank Leonello and Joe Leonello, Jr. Their father, Joe Leonello, Sr., was in the business of building homes, so they grew up in construction. Before joining Franjo Construction, Frank built a successful career in Construction Estimating, having served as the Vice President of Estimating for Dick Corporation. He always had an entrepreneurial spirit and started with Franjo as a way to make an honest living. Now 25 years later, Franjo is a group of affiliated companies with over 150 employees in total. Frank continues to be involved in estimating, even guest teaching at Pitt. He brings extensive market knowledge and a passion for estimating and pre-construction processes.


    Amanda Markovic

    GBBN Architects

    Amanda is driven by design’s power to transform experience and empower communities in urban centers, the workplace, and academia. A leader in our Pittsburgh office, Amanda is also a firmwide Market Design Leader, overseeing design strategy for our Community Development Market, which includes affordable and multi-family housing, community libraries, and not-for-profit organizations. Her passion for libraries has led to award-winning renovations for the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, Knoxville and a reimagining of the Cincinnati & Hamilton County Public Library, Deer Park Next Generation Library. Her commitment to equitable development has guided her community-centered approach to Fifth & Dinwiddie, a mixed-use, Passive House project in Pittsburgh's Uptown neighborhood. A great communicator who facilitates productive discussions among multiple project stakeholders, Amanda's desire to connect everyone to good design has led her to become a leader in the American Institute of Architects Blueprint for Better Communities (B4B) initiative.

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