Bret Collazzi


Bret Collazzi draws on seven years of real estate, land use, and public policy experience to develop creative urban investment strategies, predominantly in New York City.


Bret serves as an advisor to leading New York City nonprofit organizations. He has worked with The New York Public Library (NYPL) to articulate the economic and social impact of its broadening array of programs and services, including ESL, career development, and tech literacy, and analyze how various real estate investments could increase that impact. He currently advises NYPL on asset strategy across its three-borough portfolio. For St. Barnabas Hospital in the Bronx and Kingsbrook Jewish Medical Center in Brooklyn, he has assisted hospital leadership in evaluating disposition and redevelopment strategies for ancillary properties and provides ongoing negotiation support.

A core member of HR&A’s tech team, Bret manages on behalf of the New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) the NYC BigApps competition, the world’s largest civic tech initiative. Under his leadership BigApps 2014 attracted a record number of applicants and sponsors, and awarded over $100,000 in prizes for apps that improve housing conditions, job placement, and classroom education. He manages Take the H.E.L.M., a competition that has awarded over $2.5 million in grants to catalytic tech and creative firms that relocated to or expanded within Lower Manhattan. Since the summer of 2013, he has advised LaGuardia Community College of the City University of New York on expanding its tech programming.

Finally, Bret works to promote neighborhood and economic development in his home borough of the Bronx. For NYCEDC, he led a market study to identify opportunities for hotel development in the Bronx. For the Hunts Point Cooperative Market, the world’s largest wholesale meat market, he developed a multi-year investment strategy to modernize the facility and position it for long-term growth. Bret also supported a winning team led by PennDesign/OLIN in the H.U.D. Rebuild by Design competition, whose plan to protect the Hunts Point Peninsula from storm damage while creating new public space earned a $20 million grant from H.U.D. for follow-on study.

Prior to joining HR&A, Bret was a senior aide to New York City Council Member James Vacca, where he managed policy, communications, and land use. He was previously managing editor of the Bronx Times Reporter, the borough’s largest-circulating newspaper. He holds a Master of Business Administration with distinction from Cornell University’s Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management and a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from New York University.

Member, Urban Land Institute