82 MARCH/APRIL 2015 | BETHESDAMAGAZINE.COM
Abramson is not a man of small
ambitions. He believes that buildings
designed “in accord with natural law”
can profoundly improve the mood and
mindset of their tenants. And he says he
wants his firm to “become a catalyst to
transform the entire real estate industry.”
The example he’s trying to set is
clearly evident at company headquarters on Tower Oaks Boulevard in
Rockville. The first thing you notice
is the parking garage. It’s immaculate,
the cleanest I’ve ever seen, with several
charging stations for electric cars.
Plugged into one is Abramson’s small
white Chevy Volt.
On the top floor, sunshine pours in
from every direction. “Light is free,”
Abramson likes to say, and every office
has a view of the surrounding landscape. “It’s like a tree house up here,”
Yes, a very well-appointed tree
house, with indoor gardens, recycled
building materials and a kitchen where
a chef cooks vegetarian lunches. The
Tower offices have won countless environmental awards, but Abramson says
his real goal is to “go beyond green” and
enhance the well-being of his employees, the “human capital” that comprises
85 percent of any company’s costs.
Not all real estate executives meditate.
But Jeffrey Abramson has never been one
to worry about what others are doing.
banter | HOMETOWN
BY STEVE ROBERTS
WHEN JEFFREY ABRAMSON
was about 10 years old, he attended
Shepherd Elementary School in Northwest Washington. He could see, a few
blocks away, looming over the trees,
an apartment complex in Silver Spring
called The Blairs that was built by his
father, Albert “Sonny” Abramson.
“That was my beginning of understanding real estate,” he recalls.
He’s learned a lot since then. Today,
Jeffrey, 62, and his two older brothers, Ronald and Gary, run the Tower
Companies, the business created by
their father, who died three years ago.
And they are renovating the project the
young boy could see from his classroom
window, a 27-acre “city-within-a-city”
that will include apartments and town
houses, parks and gardens, stores and
Multi-Housing News calls The Blairs
“the largest redevelopment effort in
Montgomery County Downtown history.” But the significance of the project
goes beyond size. It’s also about spirit.
It’s about how people live, not just where