As senior vice president of Hudson Meridian Construction Group, one of the leading construction firms in the Northeast, Luciano Bana has overseen the development and management of some of New York’s most notable high-rise properties, among them Tishman Speyer’s Jackson Park, a breathtaking $305 million glass wonder with over 1,600 residential units in three glistening towers that stretch some 55 stories toward the sky over Long Island City; and Brookfield Properties, a 458-unit residential property whose triple towers rise on the bank of the Harlem River in the Bronx. “I love this business—every part of it. Working with our clients and establishing successful teams that can grow and work together to help translate the visions of those we represent is what drives me every single day,” Luciano says.
Luciano joined Hudson Meridian six years ago, and in that short time has executed and managed the ground up development of projects totaling $900 million. Based in Manhattan, NY, the firm offers a unique combination of construction expertise to private and public sector owners across New York City, the Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens, Manhattan, Long Island, and New Jersey. As SVP, Luciano is responsible for the P&L for residential, high-rise properties, from pre-construction thru construction phase and to final turnover. However, his involvement does not stop at his office door. Luciano is a hands-on, “on the ground” leader with construction in his veins and a head for business who oversees the on-site teams, budgets, and deliverables of every project.
For a man who has spent over 25 years in residential, commercial, and institutional construction, directed the development of over 75 projects, and executed deals totaling $1 billion over his career, one might expect the feeling of wonderment to have faded for Luciano. But that would be an erroneous assumption, indeed. Luciano’s passion for the construction industry and building reflects of his clients’ visions and is contagious.
“Every building that we build and create, that we touch and have our hands on takes a piece of you because it takes your time, energy, and it becomes a part of you. It’s a part of your life that you leave there with that project, the people, the work, the hours, the dedication to seeing it get to where it had to be. I’ll drive by a building that I helped develop years ago, still with a sense of awe,” Luciano shares. “I have taken the approach that this business is generally made up of two distinguishing requirements. One is having a management style of building and the second is having a master builders’ methodology and applying both as a common cost approach to our client’s needs with a focus on safety.” Luciano continues to grow a following of clients and making their goals is what drives him to deliver.
Luciano’s start in the construction field was a humble, inauspicious one that could not have foretold the astounding success that he would achieve—or the passion that would drive it. His life began with the airline industry having been an aircraft controller for Continental Airlines. Foreseeing the inevitable changes in that industry forced him to refocus on a future that he can control and create. For construction, it all began with a job painting houses with his father’s small business, which Luciano quickly grew into one of the top 10 union painters in the New Jersey area. And so, it began. As Luciano explains, “I naturally migrated to doing interiors, renovations, and coming out of that to construction in New York to single-story to residential towers to institutional, pharma, educational, etc.”
The mid-nineties marked Luciano’s entry into larger developments with the first project of his career, for Kean University in Union, NJ: a 2,000-square-foot, $300,000 library conversion into classrooms, which still exists today. Quickly growing into his role for more he went from institutional work to pharma, manufacturing and then box buildings. Now, as he leads the development of some of the most magnificent buildings in the Northeast, whose values dwarf his inaugural project decades ago, Luciano’s humility and idealism belies his tremendous achievements. “I’ve always loved the construction business, the people aspect of it, loved the idea of growing and becoming better at what we do, and always pushing the boundaries of my limits to do more and to grow more,” Luciano says.
Senior Vice President — Hudson Meridian Construction Group