Skip to Content
Author: The BCW

Leave a Comment

Visionary Developer and Business Leader Robert F. Weinberg Dies at 90

Robert F. Weinberg, a visionary commercial and residential developer who over six decades transformed the landscape and economy of Westchester County as co-founder of the Robert Martin Company, died of natural causes at his home in Manhattan on Sept. 3, 2019. He was 90.

Working side-by-side with his life-time business partner, the late Martin S. Berger, Weinberg and the Robert Martin Company were at the forefront of innovation and change in the real estate industry. Most notably, the company pioneered the development of more than six million square feet of office and industrial parks across Westchester and Fairfield counties, as well as over 3,000 apartments, condominiums and single-family homes throughout Westchester.

Weinberg’s astute business sense consistently kept the company on the cutting edge of real estate trends. This enabled the firm to play a leading role in a wide array of major projects, including the creation of expansive suburban office and industrial parks, hotels, retail centers, as well as thousands of housing units. The company was particularly active in the cities of White Plains and Yonkers; the towns of Greenburgh and Mount Pleasant; and the villages of Tarrytown, Elmsford and Port Chester.

Combining their first names, Weinberg and Berger, who died in 2011, founded the Robert Martin Company in 1957. They began by modestly building five single-family homes in Ardsley.  They quickly expanded, building larger single-family home developments in Hartsdale, Yorktown, White Plains, and other communities.

In the late 1960s, however, they took a step that was to change the course of their business and in real ways, even the trajectory of economic development in Westchester. Acquiring a large tract of land on Route 9A in Greenburgh, Weinberg and Berger decided to build an office-warehouse park, the first of its kind in Westchester County.

The overwhelming success of the Cross Westchester Executive Park led to a series of transformative mixed-use office and commercial projects that the company developed, including the South Westchester Executive Park in Yonkers; the Mid Westchester Executive Park in Hawthorne; and the Stamford Executive Park in Stamford, CT.

The company was the first major developer to invest in the Urban Renewal of downtown White Plains. Its work there included the development of sixteen unique projects, culminating in the development of a full city block opposite the White Plains train station known as Westchester Financial Center.  Located at 50 Main Street, the project included two office towers, an apartment tower, and a common parking garage.

The company also led the way in the redevelopment of downtown Port Chester and constructed over 1,000 apartments in Elmsford and Greenburgh.

Today, the company’s diverse portfolio includes over six million square feet of multi-family, office, retail and industrial properties as well as over 200 acres of developable land in Westchester, Connecticut and Florida.

Earlier this year, the company, led today by Tim Jones and Greg Berger, completed the acquisition of a 3.1 million square-foot office/flex portfolio, consisting mostly of properties originally developed by Robert Martin. The $487.5 million purchase from Mack-Cali Realty Corporation was the largest commercial real estate transaction in Westchester County history.

Weinberg was born in Manhattan on Sept. 20, 1928, to his mother Ray Greenbaum and father Alexander Weinberg. He grew up in New York City, although he and his parents spent time in Elmsford when he was recovering from scarlet fever as a young boy.

Weinberg earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Mechanical Engineering from New York University, a Masters of Science Degree in Building Engineering & Construction from M.I.T. and a law degree from Brooklyn Law School.

A true visionary, Weinberg was particularly fond of a group he formed and chaired for more than 40 years, the Outreach Committee on Orderly Growth in Westchester. The group, which grew to include more than 40 members, meets for lunch seven times a year with Weinberg personally setting the agenda for “off-the-record” discussions of a wide range of issues pertinent to Westchester’s future including transportation, housing, planning and zoning.

In addition to operating Robert Martin, he was also deeply involved in business, civic and philanthropic positions throughout the community. These included serving as a Director of the Mack-Cali Real Estate Investment Trust; Chairman of the Westchester Public Issues Institute; Director of the Westchester County Association; President of the Builders Institute of Westchester & Putnam Counties; Director of the publicly-traded Sequa Corporation; Commissioner of the Westchester County Utility Agency; Member of the Westchester County Advisory Committee on Housing Policy; Chairman of the UJA/Federation, Westchester Real Estate & Builder’s Division; Trustee of the Federation of Jewish Philanthropies of New York; and Chairman of the Associated YM-YWHA’s of Greater New York; Director of the City & Suburban Financial Corporation; Board Member of SUNY Purchase; Member of the Design Task Force for the TZB/Governor Mario M. Cuomo Bridge, and Co-founder of City and Suburban Savings Bank, among other involvements.

He maintained homes in White Plains, Manhattan and Palm Beach, FL. He was a long-time member of the Metropolis Country Club in Greenburgh and served on its Board of Directors, and also was a member of the Beach Point Club in Mamaroneck, the Harmonie Club and the Doubles Club in Manhattan, and the Palm Beach Country Club in Florida.

Mr. Weinberg was predeceased by his parents, his wife of 53 years, Marilyn, in 2012, and his daughter, Eileen W. Toulouse, in 2016. He is survived by his grandchildren Stacy Lynn Reilly and her husband Sam, and Scott Alexander Hesse and his wife Whitney, and his great grandchildren Jake Ethan Reilly, Cameron Michael Reilly and William Robert Hesse.

A memorial service will be held Friday, September 6, at 9:30 a.m. at the Frank E. Campbell Funeral Chapel, located at 1076 Madison Ave, New York, NY 10028 at 81st Street. Further arrangements are being made for the family to receive friends in both Westchester and New York City.

The family suggest, in lieu of flowers, that memorials be made in his memory to the Elizabeth Seton Pediatric Center in Yonkers, N.Y., or the Ranachqua Foundation, which supports Boy Scouts activities and college scholarships, in Bronx, N.Y.

“I was so honored to not only have a professional relationship with Bob, but to call him my personal friend. It was my privilege to be part of his EXPO group, which explored so many issues affecting positive growth in Westchester. Throughout these years, I learned so much from him, admired his intellect and his vision, and became infused with his sincere passion for Westchester. We also had some great lunches, a few good laughs and lots of sage advice. There will not be another person like Bob Weinberg and his legacy will certainly continue to impact our community into the future.

On behalf of The Business Council of Westchester, I would like to extend my condolences to Bob’s family and friends, as well as my gratitude for all that Bob Weinberg has done to make Westchester County the tremendous place it is to live, work and play today.”

– Marsha Gordon, President and CEO of The Business Council of Westchester

Similar News Items

Nuvance Health and Northwell Health, two nonprofit, mission-driven healthcare organizations, this week announced they have entered into a strategic agreement to form a new integrated regional health system serving communities across two states. The proposed agreement will allow the organizations to come together formally upon receipt of necessary regulatory approval. “This partnership opens a new […]

Read Article

In what is the largest donation made to any medical school in the nation, BCW Member Montefiore’s Albert Einstein College of Medicine announced this week a transformation gift from Ruth L. Gottesman, Ed.D., Chair of the Einstein Board of Trustees and Montefiore Health System board member. The historic gift, reported to be $1 billion, will […]

Read Article

In a recent letter to the editor published in Crain’s New York Business, BCW Executive Vice President John Ravitz passionately defended New York’s film and television tax credits. Responding to a critical study of the tax credit program, Ravitz highlighted the significant and ongoing benefits it brings to the state’s economy. Ravitz emphasized the pivotal […]

Read Article

Become A Member

Join the county’s largest and most influential business organization today.

JOIN NOW!
The Business Council of Westchester is committed to helping businesses market, learn, advocate, and grow. Over 80 events and programs are offered every year, giving our members ample opportunity to connect and meet with businesses representatives in the Westchester community and beyond.
Back to top