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As Construction Continues at JFK Int’l Airport, ARK Development, LLC, Completes Design and Schematic Development of The ARK at JFK

World’s First Integrated Animal Handling Airport Terminal Enters Pre-Operational Mode 

ARK Development, LLC, an affiliate of leading real estate company Racebrook Capital, has released its final project renderings, ending design and schematic development for The ARK at JFK.

In parallel, as construction continues to progress, The Ark is ramping up its pre- operational business phase, with staff identification, employment and training, as well as additional outreach to clients, end-users and other stakeholders. Earlier this year, after executing a 32-year lease agreement with the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, ARK Development took over Cargo Building 78, performed selective demolition, and began construction of The ARK at JFK, a $48-million, 14.4 acre, state-of-the-art animal handling and intelligent air cargo facility.

“Redeveloping cargo infrastructure and growing the cargo pie at New York and New Jersey’s airports is vital to supporting thousands of jobs and hundreds of millions of dollars in economic activity for the region,” said Port Authority Executive Director Pat Foye. “ARK’s investment of $48 million into

JFK will transform an airport structure that has been vacant for nearly 10 years into a world-class specialty cargo facility, and the agreement guarantees the Port Authority more than $100 million in revenue without any additional capital investment.”

Design by Architectural Leaders

The ARK at JFK was designed by master architect Gensler, specialty architects Lachlan Oldaker Equine Design and Temple Grandin Livestock Handling Systems, and engineers

Clough Harbour Associates, with construction management by Holt Construction. Cornell University’s College of Veterinary Medicine is providing consultation and oversight through all phases of planning and operational development, in addition to cooperation and guidance from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).

“We developed The Ark concept to address the unmet needs for the import and export of companion, sporting and agricultural animals,” said ARK/Racebrook Chairman and CEO John J. Cuticelli, Jr. “The ARK at JFK will set the standard and be the flagship of what will prove to be the turnkey solution to animal cargo and handling at international airports worldwide, for comprehensive and integrated travel-related veterinary, kenneling and quarantine services.”

Original Artwork by Internationally Renowned Pop Artist, Charles Fazzino

The exterior design of The ARK at JFK emphasizes its family and pet-oriented nature, with bright multi-colored architectural and animal highlights on the façade, two dog runs and relief areas, benches and picnic tables for clients and employees. The Ark will also have on permanent display an original three-dimensional mixed media artwork created by internationally renowned and award-winning pop art master, Charles Fazzino, in the main lobby.

“With demand for pets and animals of all kinds to be transported by air escalating year after year, we recognized the need for a more user friendly, humane and efficient model for this significant segment of the air travel industry. A world-class facility with more than 650,000 square feet of property on the runway system at JFK already gives us pride of place in New York, the Northeast, and the predominant gateway into North

America,” commented Dr. Aaron S. Perl, Managing Director and General Counsel of ARK Development. “We couldn’t be more thrilled that Charles Fazzino has agreed to provide his time and considerable talent to memorialize The ARK at JFK in a skyscraping vista and urban jungle landscape, created in his own inimitable style.”

Financing Through Build NYC

Financing is being facilitated by New York’s Economic Development Corporation’s Build NYC Resource Corporation to augment the capital structure that includes equity partner Westport Capital Partners LLC, and construction lender The Union Labor Life Insurance Co., Real Estate Investment Group.

“Build NYC bonds are a crucial tool in the City’s overall efforts to drive the economy, encouraging business growth and job creation in all five boroughs,” said Jeffrey Lee, Executive Director of Build NYC. “The Air Cargo industry at JFK is an important component of New York City’s greater economy, directly responsible for over 17,000 jobs, and The ARK at JFK will help bolster JFK’s competitive advantage as an international air cargo gateway, a major New York City Economic Development Corporation priority.”

USDA-approved Quarantine, Pet Boarding and 24/7 Animal Care

Through its operational arm and its tenants’ services, The Ark will be the world’s only privately owned animal handling cargo terminal with direct access to the taxiway and its own aircraft parking ramp, and will house a USDA-approved, full-service 24-hour airport quarantine facility for the import and export of horses, pets, birds, and livestock. Subtenants already on board include Consolidated Aviation Services (CAS), North America’s leading air cargo ground handler; Paradise 4 Paws, which will provide award-winning pet boarding services in its 20,000 square foot resort, spa and training center for cats and dogs; Red Bank Veterinary Hospital, a companion animal hospital for 24/7 general medicine, emergency, critical care, internal medicine, surgery and advanced diagnostics; and VetAura, a leading network of companion animal diagnostic laboratories.

“We are excited to partner with ARK Development on such a monumental and visionary project that will utterly transform the way other airports approach their animal handling responsibilities,” said Mike Duffy, CEO of Consolidated Aviation Services, which will serve as the anchor tenant and exclusive ground handler for The Ark and clients Air France, KLM, and Martin Air.

With launch of The Ark expected by the middle of 2016, The Ark’s management and tenants continue to direct their collective efforts to bring together an array of regulatory requirements, information

systems and operating procedures, in anticipation of their respective clients’ significant utilization of the facility and its services. In spite of the increasing complexities, Managing Director Dr. Perl remains reassured. “Committed and enthusiastic participation by all stakeholders — including aviation and cargo industry leaders, federal, state and municipal government, public and private companies, academia and, of course, animal lovers and owners across the globe — is indicative of a shared vision and common goal that have sparked the imagination and which Racebrook and ARK Development are making a reality.”

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