The consortium of RFR, Kushner Properties and LIVWRK engaged LEESER Architecture to develop a vision for the 1.2 million-square-foot former Jehovah’s Witness publishing facilities.
The design utilized existing site features such as the interconnecting sky bridges by converting them to public amenities space including an open air running track, gym and pool. Heavy walls were removed to create public arcades doubling sidewalks and allowing for restaurants, theaters and a beer garden, all of which contribute to creating a unique public destination and attractive option for commercial and residential tenants.
Increased FAR from a proposed zoning change would be distributed between commercial rooftop penthouses and a residential tower atop one of the existing buildings. Its form rotated to take advantage of multiple river and city views.
The concept developed for Dumbo Heights lead to the successful purchase of the development site by the consortium.