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The Tech Triangle Initiative woos MakerBot Downtown

MakerBot moves Downtown

The Brooklyn Paper

MakerBot’s new offices are a grown-up kid’s dream. The chairs and tables look like giant, stackable construction toys. There’s a sprawling “bot farm,” where racks of 3-D printers constantly churn out goodies. There’s also the stunning 21st floor, 360 degree view of the city.

That’s not to mention the full-scale replica of Dr. Who’s Tardis, which uses clever architecture to somehow seem, indeed, bigger on the inside.

Last week, MakerBot, the pioneer of desktop 3-D printers, moved from Gowanus into its massive, 26,000 square-feet offices in the Metrotech building in Downtown.

Bre Pettis, co-founder and chief executive officer of MakerBot, said he never considered leaving the borough.

“Brooklyn is the best place in the world. There are other places?” quipped Pettis before disappearing into the Tardis in the lobby, which connects to the rest of the space though a second door. “There’s more talent here, more people with a can-do attitude.”

The folks at the Brooklyn Tech Triangle Initiative, a coalition of groups from Downtown, DUMBO and the Navy Yard that are formulating a plan to bring more technology companies to those neighborhoods, are thrilled that MakerBot is here.

“We’re incredibly excited by the opening of MakerBot here,” said Tom Conoscenti, executive director for planning and administration at Downtown Brooklyn Partnership, one of the members of the initiative. “The media companies started moving here a couple of years ago. Now, the tech companies are the next wave of tenants.”

So far, MakerBot is the first and only major technology company to commit to Downtown. But Conoscenti is hoping that the printer company will lead to a critical mass.

“MakerBot is going to give confidence to a lot of companies that Downtown Brooklyn is where the action is at,” he said.

Last fall, MakerBot released its Replicator 2 Desktop 3D Printer and opened a retail store in NoHo.

But MakerBots are still printed in Brooklyn too, at the “bot cave” in Boerum Hill, and Pettis said it will stay that way.

The Tech Triangle folks aren’t the only ones happy that MakerBot stayed in Brooklyn. The company’s employees, most of whom live in the borough, are also psyched.

“My commute is really great,” said Annelise Jeske, who rides her bike to work almost every day. “I love Brooklyn. When I first moved here, I thought I would have to work in Manhattan. I’m happy that I don’t.”

Reach reporter Danielle Furfaro at dfurfaro@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260-2511. Follow her at twitter.com/DanielleFurfaro.

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Reader Feedback

Amym from Prospect Heights says:
Should be "Doctor Who's TARDIS"
Feb. 1, 2013, 8:51 am
kelly from park slope says:
Ha, "bot cave" love it.
Feb. 1, 2013, 8:53 am
Z from inw00t says:
Actually Amym, it should be "the Doctor's TARDIS."
Feb. 1, 2013, 1:09 pm
B from Brooklyn says:
They can afford a new building location on the backs of those that works very hard just to get laid off due to budget cuts. Seem you had the budget after all. Using people and kicking them to the curb with budget layoff is a joke. Tell them there temp going in. Not the makerbot it use to be. And the stealing of the Tardis come on at least have the M logo that you brand on everything now. Or something of your own creation.
Feb. 2, 2013, 2:12 am
Duffield Street Dandy says:
Bad move for MakerBotch, the Metro Tech buildings were garbage from the start and remain so... Hard to believe few others wanted to rent there, right?

Re: B, you couldn't be more correct but it only points out what a fraud Metro Tech office rentals are and what kind of "deal" the Maker clowns got to move.
Feb. 3, 2013, 1:09 am
The question is says:
How much are they paying for rent and how does that compare to previous tenants (like, maybe, a bank)?

And, btw, there's no one "Metrotech building." Wall Street Journal IDs new home as "One MetroTech."
Feb. 5, 2013, 10:43 am

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