Partner for Related Southeast, Gopal Rajegowda, underscores connecting the arts with the community
The Raymond F. Kravis Center for the Performing Arts held a Corporate Partners Business Speaker Series event in the Gimelstob Ballroom in the Cohen Pavilion on Wednesday, March 30.
Executive Vice-President of Related Companies and Partner at Related Southeast, Gopal Rajegowda, discussed the future of The Square neighborhood in West Palm Beach and how arts and culture are playing a major role in its redevelopment. He gave a behind the scenes look at The Related Companies role in reshaping downtown West Palm Beach. Related Companies and Mr. Rajegowda are members of the Kravis Center’s Corporate Partners Executive Committee.
Kravis Center Board Chairman, Kravis Center Corporate Partners Executive Committee Chairman and President and CEO of SBA Communications Corporation, Jeffrey Stoops, welcomed more than 100 Corporate Partners members and guests to the luncheon and provided an overview of the Kravis Center’s Corporate Partners membership.
Mr. Stoops introduced Mr. Rajegowda, who has more than 16 years’ experience managing all aspects of mixed-use real estate acquisition and development. Currently, he heads the re-imagination of The Square neighborhood; 360 Rosemary; 575 Rosemary, a mixed-use tower that includes luxury residences and retail space; and One Flagler, a Class-A world-class office building located along the Downtown West Palm Beach waterfront.
Rena Blades served as moderator for the discussion. Ms. Blades is President of Delos Consulting and Former CEO of the Cultural Council for Palm Beach County.
The informative discussion began with Mr. Rajegowda’s early life in New York, being a first generation Indian American, trips to India and eventually his career path in real estate. He holds an M.A. in Real Estate Development from Columbia University and a B.A. in Mathematics from Cornell University.
“The Square is surrounded by some of the oldest cultural institutions in the county,” said Rajegowda. “When we were updating The Square, we wanted it to become a dynamic hub for the community.”
Rajegowda went on to explain that art and culture became the focal point during The Square’s re-envisioning. Art is woven into the architecture, its programming, and collaborations with different brands. The Square has had road tattoos down Rosemary Avenue, and The Culture Lab took over the old Macy’s building with temporary art installations. One of the new programs was a partnership with the nonprofit New Wave to offer an Artist in Residency program. In 2019 The Square had completed public space improvements including The Wishing Tree, a 25-foot banyan tree sculpture with 100,000 LED lights as well as the interactive water pavilion. In addition, there are major works of art that have become the anchor for the district.
“We don’t want to think of this place as just a shopping center,” said Rajegowda. “This is a place for the community.”
Kravis Center Corporate Partners members are the corporate and professional leadership in Palm Beach County whose mission is to support and enable the Kravis Center to continue its extensive educational and community outreach programs. Corporate Partners membership offers this dynamic group of business leaders the opportunity to act as an integral part of the Kravis Center, building awareness of the Center within the business community.
To inquire about the Kravis Center’s Corporate Partners memberships, visit kravis.org or call Ali Rehm at 561.651.4297.
Slatkow & Husak Public Relations
Heather@SlatkowHusak.com or (561) 278-0850