East Brooklyn BID to hold second annual summit to support growing businesses and address local issues

east brooklyn BID summit
The East Brooklyn BID is hosting its second annual economic development summit on June 13.
Photo courtesy of state Sen. Roxanne Persaud/Facebook

The East Brooklyn Business Improvement District will host its second annual economic development summit on June 13, aiming to unite local businesses to foster growth and tackle pressing issues in the 40-block industrial park.

The event, themed “Refresh, Renew, and Reinvigorate,” will feature workshops and keynote speeches focused on rejuvenating business models, renewing service offerings, and expanding market opportunities to ensure sustainable growth and resilience.

William Wilkins, executive director of EBBID, expressed excitement about the summit’s potential to bring together more businesses from the Industrial Park, preserving the rich manufacturing history of East New York, which he described as an “economic ecosystem.”

east brooklyn business district
The East Brooklyn Business District houses more than 100 distinct businesses — largely in the manufacturing sphere. Photo courtesy of EBBID/Facebook

“There’s something unique and also divine about working and living in the same community,” Wilkins said. “This creates a microeconomic synergy where money is recycled within the community, benefitting both businesses and residents in an under-resourced area.”

The 40-block area, bordered by Atlantic Avenue to the north and Sutter Avenue to the south, hosts a variety of over 100 businesses in five predominant industries: manufacturing, distribution, transportation, steel fabrication, and the building trade. Notably, the park has been home to Eastern Steel since the 1930s and Adriatic Wood, the last wood mill in New York City, since 1982.

Beyond enhancing the business environment and boosting economic activity, EBBID is committed to addressing issues directly impacting local businesses. Following last year’s summit, EBBID and Council Member Sandy Nurse established a task force to meet monthly with relevant agencies to discuss local business concerns.

According to Wilkins, key issues include illegal dumping, graffiti, prostitution, and homeless encampments, which primarily occur after business hours.

“If you have people living on the street, barbecuing, washing, doing drugs, and hanging out, it affects business,” Wilkins said. “Customers and suppliers visiting an Industrial Park with such issues will be deterred.”

The upcoming summit will also provide a platform for businesses to voice their concerns to city agencies, including the Department of Sanitation, NYPD, and the Department of Consumer Affairs.

EBBID summit
After last year’s summit, EBBID partnered with local officials to form a task force to address local issues. Photo courtesy of EBBID/Facebook

“Part of the summit is to identify the tools, programs, and resources that various agencies have and how to implement them,” Wilkins said. “This event allows us to come together with community-based organizations, government, and the private sector to discuss issues and develop vital lines of communication.”

“Instead of working in opposition, we’re working cooperatively,” Wilkins added.

The summit will be hosted at SoFive, located at 2015 Pitkin Ave on June 13. Interested attendees can register here.