Carl Weisbrod is currently a senior advisor at HR&A Advisors, Inc., an economic development and real estate consulting firm with offices across the country, and a senior fellow at New York University’s Marron Institute of Urban Management. He also is the chairman of the Trust for Governors Island.
From 2014 until February 2017, Weisbrod served as the chairman of the New York City Planning Commission and director of the New York City Department of City Planning (DCP). He has more than 40 years of experience serving the people of New York. Starting under Mayor John Lindsay, Weisbrod has been the appointee of five New York City mayors. As a member of the de Blasio administration, Weisbrod was charged with creating land-use policies to promote an equitable, resilient, sustainable and economically vibrant city. Weisbrod has been a key player in the development and implementation of Housing New York, the mayor’s affordable housing initiative, which includes the recent enactment of Mandatory Inclusionary Housing (MIH) and Zoning for Quality and Affordability (ZQA). MIH establishes the most rigorous zoning requirements for affordable housing of any major U.S. city, and ZQA is the most important revision of the city’s Zoning Resolution since 1961. Under Weisbrod’s leadership, the DCP worked with communities on developing holistic, community-driven, ground-up frameworks for growth that will provide affordable housing, along with necessary amenities, jobs, retailing, services and resiliency measures. At DCP, he created a new Capital Planning division to integrate planning principles and priorities into the city’s capital budget process and also created a new Regional Planning division, recognizing that the city’s and region’s health are intimately intertwined.
As the founding president of the New York City Economic Development Corporation, Weisbrod has led public and private partnerships that have transformed some of the city’s most dynamic and fastest-growing neighborhoods. He spearheaded the city’s efforts to revitalize Times Square, transforming it from a symbol of urban decay into a global hub for tourism and entertainment. Weisbrod also assisted in the post-9/11 recovery of downtown neighborhoods. He was appointed a director of the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation by Mayor Bloomberg and served as the founding president of the Alliance for Downtown New York. As the president of the real estate division of Trinity Church, he oversaw the successful rezoning of the Hudson Square neighborhood in Manhattan, paving the way for its development as a dynamic mixed-use neighborhood for creative industries and new housing.