Design-Forward Scaffolding Maker Urban Umbrella Partners with Manhattans Madison Avenue BID | Financial Buzz

Design-Forward Scaffolding Maker Urban Umbrella Partners with Manhattans Madison Avenue BID

Urban Umbrella, New York City’s first scaffolding design alternative, announced today it has partnered with Madison Avenue Business Improvement District (BID), as part of the BID’s effort to promote safe sidewalks, without detracting from the aesthetic investments in the avenue’s storefronts and building design.

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Urban Umbrella's revolutionary scaffolding structures installed at 1076 Madison Avenue, NYC (Photo: Business Wire)

Urban Umbrella’s revolutionary scaffolding structures installed at 1076 Madison Avenue, NYC (Photo: Business Wire)

“Urban Umbrella is a game-changer; it takes what was a necessary element of the New York City streetscape and not a particularly welcome one — scaffolding — and turns it into an amenity,” said Matthew Bauer, President of Madison Avenue Business Improvement District, which works to improve security, sanitation, promotion, and advocacy for the district. “Urban Umbrella scaffolding allows for passage of light and air, compliments the Upper East Side’s historic architecture, and generally looks good, making the street more inviting for pedestrians. What other scaffolding can you compare to an Italian loggia?”

Organizations and businesses located within the Madison Avenue BID, which extends from East 57th to East 86th Street in Manhattan and includes the commercial areas of its adjacent side streets, will receive a 20-percent discount on Urban Umbrella’s scaffolding. Current installations include the Ralph Lauren Flagship Store, The Apple Store at 490 Madison Avenue, a co-op at 40 East 66th Street, Frank E. Campbell Funeral Chapel, and 31 East 72nd Street.

“When we decided to renovate and reimagine all 17,000 square feet of our iconic building, one of the world’s most well-known funeral homes, it was vital that we partner with only the finest vendors,” said William Villanova, president of Frank E. Campbell Funeral Chapel, located at 1076 Madison Avenue, at the corner of East 81st Street. “We sought a scaffolding provider that would complement our façade and allow us to remain operational, so we could provide our client families with the services and accommodations they deserve and expect. We were delighted to learn about Urban Umbrella’s offering. When the system was being installed, complete with LED lighting and scrim printed to look like the facade of the building, people commented on its beauty and design, and asked if it was being installed for a special event. It looks that good!”

Urban Umbrella’s modular product – a revolutionary, cross-bracing-free sidewalk shed composed of high-strength steel, translucent plastic panels, LED lighting, and arching struts also functions as a marketing opportunity with customizable signage and protective netting. Lighting gives it a unique elegance at night, while increasing pedestrian safety and dissuading crime. The company is patent approved with patents pending.

Since 2017, Urban Umbrella has deployed its industry-leading structures to facilitate safe construction sites throughout the city and its boroughs, offering a suite of solutions for office buildings, stores, restaurants, schools and hospitals to use Urban Umbrella scaffolding for COVID mitigation, including socially-distanced queue management during temperature checks and to shield those waiting outside from the elements.

“What sets Urban Umbrella apart from our competitors has always been our dedication to innovation, with a focus on safety,” Benjamin Krall, Founder and CEO of Urban Umbrella, said. “New York City’s businesses and storefronts need as much support as possible to encourage pedestrian traffic in a way that is safe, in order to cultivate prosperity and stability in the wake of the city’s post-pandemic economic recovery.”

About Urban Umbrella

Urban Umbrella is the designer, patent holder, and fabricator of the only alternative scaffolding bridge on the market that is approved by The New York Department of Building. The unique product is the first design substitute for traditional scaffolding in over 60 years. In an International design competition with over 260 contestants, Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Department of Buildings Commissioner Robert LiMandri proclaimed Urban Umbrella the new exemplar of scaffolding for NYC. The Urban Umbrella design was chosen to help improve quality of life, reduce construction impacts on businesses, increase pedestrian safety, and increase available space for pedestrians on sidewalks. As of March 2021, Urban Umbrella scaffolding and sidewalk sheds were installed on over 100 buildings in NYC, Boston, Chicago, Connecticut, Toronto and Vancouver. Additional information about Urban Umbrella available at

About Madison Avenue Business Improvement District

In 1996, the Madison Avenue Business Improvement District (BID) was formed through a partnership of property owners, merchants, residents and elected officials, who joined together with the fundamental goal of enhancing the quality of life for the community and its visitors. The BID is managed by the 60-86 Madison Avenue District Management Association, a not-for-profit corporation under contract with the City of New York to supplement services to the community. The DMA is supported by revenue generated from assessments to local property owners, and focuses on security, sanitation, promotion of and advocacy for the district. The Madison Avenue BID extends from East 57th to East 86th Street on Madison Avenue and also encompasses the commercial areas of its adjacent side streets. The district is comprised of approximately 250 buildings, 500 cooperatives and condominium units and over 800 businesses, and includes some of the world’s most celebrated boutiques, galleries, restaurants and hotels. For additional information, visit


Katherine Curkin

Antenna Group


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