Interview | Jorge Morgadinho (Reify.): At Reify. we apply an integrated and multidisciplinary approach to fully unlock the potential of mixed-use projects

Mihai-Alexandru Cristea 04/08/2021 | 12:57

In late March this year, Sierra Development Services announced Reify., the new brand of the company which aims to leverage on an integrated approach to the creation of innovative, sustainable and inspiring urban places in various sectors of real estate, such as Masterplanning, Mixed-use, Healthcare, Hospitality, Offices, Residential, Retail, Student Housing, Senior Living, Education and Transportation. Business Review sat down for an exclusive interview with the Managing Director of Reify., Mr. Jorge Morgadinho, to find out more about the company’s rebranding, strategy, projects, and goals.


  1. In March this year, Reify. became the new brand of Sierra Development Services. What was the reason behind this development?

The rebranding is the result of 30 years of work, knowledge and experience in multiple international markets, which now has evolved to support real estate investors in all areas of a project’s development cycle. Reify. offers an integrated approach to architecture, engineering, project management, intelligence and licensing and is supported by multidisciplinary team of over 200 professionals, who have worked on approximately 300 projects in more than 30 countries.

The new brand was inspired by the word “Reify” or “Reification” – the process of attributing a concrete form to an abstract concept. Assuming we have an integrated and multidisciplinary approach, ranging from the idea of a project to its completion, going through all stages of its development, we believe that this concept is what best defines what we do, and what distinguishes us in the market. We start from an abstract idea and transform it into something tangible. Reify. supports real estate investors in diversified sectors, such as Urban Planning, Mixed-use, Healthcare, Hospitality, Offices, Residential, Retail, Student and Senior Residences, Education and Transport.

Reify. is part of Sonae Sierra and nonetheless our DNA continues to be a reflection of Sonae Sierra’s. Whether in the quality of our professionals, in the way we make it happen, or in the thoroughness we impose on what we present to our customers. That’s a guarantee of quality for every client we work with.


  1. What differentiates the new Reify. brand in the market?

We have a unique methodology leveraged on 3 main pillars: an integrated and multidisciplinary approach, being able to deliver turn-key solutions; experience of more than 30 years across the world; ability to manage complex projects and sectors.

When looking at the projects we delivered to our clients, both in Romania and abroad, one can clearly understand the differentiation towards the rest of the market. We design, manage and deliver innovative, sustainable and inspiring urban places where people feel welcome, happy and safe.

ParkLake, a Shopping Centre in Bucharest, is a great example and we hope to be able to announce soon other great projects we are currently working on.


  1. What are Reify.’s main strategic pillars in terms of business?

Reify. has 5 main areas of competence − Architecture, Engineering, Development & Project Management, Intelligence & Strategy and Licensing & Urban Planning. By providing a complete range of services, Reify. has a unique ability to focus on the business plans for investors and to go beyond technical and aesthetic issues.

Whether is the provision of a single service, or the combination of all services necessary for the development of a real estate project, our ability to manage complexity is unique to Reify.’s brand. This allows us to focus on the final result and, therefore, create projects and deliver works of superior quality in less time and at a more competitive cost. So, Reify. adapts to the needs of each client, using the approach that better fits every project.


  1. What can you tell us about Reify.’s sustainability strategy and how will you implement it in your projects?

Sustainability is one of Sonae Sierra’s strategic axis and Reify. addresses it through an integrated and multidisciplinary approach to project development, from idea to completion.

All decisions take into consideration the sustainability of both buildings and the environment. In all the projects we certified, whether LEED, BREEAM or WELL, we have had excellent ratings.

But designing sustainable buildings goes beyond complying with the legal requirements to obtain such certifications. It also embeds a significant range of strategic decisions and requires the ability to (re)imagine buildings. That’s why we also have teams specialized in sustainable construction – from risk assessment and mitigation, to the design and implementation of the best strategy according to the needs of the building or the area where it is located.


  1. Nowadays, mixed-use projects are bringing together residential, office, retail, healthcare, sports, etc. facilities, for a more efficient lifestyle. What is your approach in this sector?

We see this trend in all major developed markets we work on and Romania is no exception. Mixed-use projects can be much more than the sum of parts, but they are necessarily more complex.

Only if work-live-and-play schemes are carefully thought out and designed, each use will perform individually while enriching the others.

Uses and users are inextricably intertwined, and the level of integration is fully dependent on knowledge applied during the development process.

At Reify. we apply an integrated and multidisciplinary approach to fully unlock the potential of mixed-use projects in order to improve their value and that of their surroundings.

Our experience with multiple international clients in numerous projects has allowed us to transform cities through the development of amazing mixed-use schemes, such as:

Colombo is today one of the largest mixed-use projects in Portugal, featuring 115.000 m2 (GLA) of retail, 58.000 m2 of offices and probably the largest underground car park in the country. Notwithstanding, we are working on a new phase that will add another 33.000 m2 of office space, designed specifically to meet the needs of top-tier companies. It will have a very modern architecture and technical qualities far superior to what exists in the Portuguese market. It is a very complex project and it will be a landmark in Lisbon, for which we are providing the full scope of our services to deliver the project to our client finalized and ready to welcome its tenants.

Another great example is Green Park Villa, a masterplan of a huge area in São Paulo, Brazil, that intends to become an urban regeneration project of worldwide reference. It includes offices, hotels, residential and transport, while expressing a dynamic form that also distinguishes it as a retail and leisure destination.

CityLife, in Milan, Italy was developed in partnership with the Zaha Hadid Architects studio (distinguished with the Pritzker award in 2004), it is one of the most important urban regeneration projects in Europe. It was opened in 2017 and is part of a mixed-use project in which two other Pritzker awards, Daniel Libeskind and Arata Isozaki, also collaborated. Rabat Agdal, in Morocco, is a different example of a mixed-use scheme leveraged by a transportation hub. It is primarily a train station that was improved to receive the high-speed train, that is taking advantage of this new centrality to create retail, residential and offices spaces.


  1. Going forward, what are your plans and goals for Reify.?

Our main business ambition is to transform cities and design, manage and deliver innovative, sustainable and inspiring urban places where people feel welcome, happy and safe. We want to do this in a sustainable way, in Romania in all the other countries where we have a presence.

We want to continue growing through our positive impact on clients and projects and to consolidate Reify. as the reference urban creator.

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Mihai-Alexandru Cristea | 12/04/2024 | 17:28
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