Architects: STUDIO V Architecture and S9 Architecture
Associated Architect: Perkins Eastman
For over 150 years, between the iconic Brooklyn and Manhattan Bridges on the Brooklyn waterfront, lay seven beautiful historic brick structures. These Civil-War-era structures were named after their use as coffee “stores” or storage warehouses, and for the epithet of a growing state: the Empire Stores.
Studio V's designs inject new life into the structures. The designs combine creative contemporary architecture with exacting historic rehabilitation, and combine overlapping uses with public spaces that reveal the inhabitants and historic structures. On top of the building’s extensive green roofs sit two-story glass and steel additions with gardens and terraces frame stunning views of the surrounding bridges. A glass and steel courtyard and passage slices through the historic structures, reconnecting the community cut off from its waterfront. The public passage reveals original sparkling schist walls, around which a spiraling steel and concrete staircase culminates in a public rooftop park revealing a stunning Manhattan Skyline. The unique design combines tech offices and public spaces with cultural and hospitality amenities to create a unique interface between work and play, public spaces and private commerce, that perfectly expresses the ethos of creative contemporary Brooklyn.
Designing an oxymoron isn’t easy: synthesizing old and new, honoring an industrial structure while reinventing it and preserving history while creating meaningful new designed to be representative of our time and culture. This is the design of Empire Stores: speaking to Brooklyn’s historic past, expressing its vibrant culture today, and pointing the way to its future.
Developer Midtown Equities, HK Organization and Rockwood Capital
Landscape Future Green Studio
Structural Engineer Robert Silman Associates
MEP Engineer Mottola Rini Engineers
LEED/ Sustainability Consultant Spiezle Architectural Group