New York is not known for being spacious, yet we often see misused or neglected areas in our communities. ORE was hired by the New York Economic Development Corporation to activate vacant lots in Brownsville (MGB POPS) and East New York Brooklyn ([re]New Lots) as a pilot program to reinforce economic change in areas facing up to 30% unemployment.
Both MGB POPS and [re]Newlots were designed and built by ORE with portability in mind. All of the elements (kiosks and retrofitted shipping containers) have gone on to new homes elsewhere in Brownsville and East New York and continue to provide accessible space for artists, makers and entrepreneurs.
[re]New Lots Operated by Arts East New York, [re]New Lots was a marketplace and artist incubator on New Lots Avenue that showcased the food and products of local entrepreneurs. [re]New Lots provided affordable vending opportunities, studio space and business support services to its tenants and free live music, performances, and youth art workshops for the community. The 17,000-square-foot space featured ten 40’ re-purposed shipping containers transformed into affordable storefronts for business owners, four 20’ shipping containers for art studios, and two 40’ shipping containers for art exhibitions and events.
MGB POPS While Brownsville is not typically known for its marketplaces and makers, there was a community-led gem in the neighborhood showcasing local talent in the heart of Mother Gaston Boulevard. MGB POPS was a direct response to residents’ requests for more retail and food options in a neighborhood that suffers from historically low outside commercial investment. The MGB marketplace was home to free-standing vendor kiosks and stores housed in modified shipping containers that boasted 150 square feet of retail space replete with the wares of local entrepreneurs and businesses. MGB POPS didn’t just cater to locals, but offered a new destination for residents citywide.