Dock life

WeWork’s new home at the Brooklyn Navy Yard tops out

Development East News Other
S9 Architecture's design for the Brooklyn Navy Yard building on Dock 72 housing WeWork. (Courtesy S9 Architecture)
S9 Architecture's design for the Brooklyn Navy Yard building on Dock 72 housing WeWork. (Courtesy S9 Architecture)

In the Brooklyn Navy Yard‘s latest development benchmark, the S9 Architecture-designed office building on Dock 72 has finally topped out at 16 stories over a year after it began construction.

The building’s anchor tenant will be WeWork, a coworking organization which has committed to 220,000 square feet of the 675,000 square foot building. A portion of this space will also be dedicated to communal space programmed by WeWork, now well-known for its open-format office plans. These spaces will include a public lawn, a health center, a basketball court, and a conference center.

S9 Architecture’s designs for the stepped structure are partially inspired by the shape of a boat hull, a reference to the Navy Yard’s past as a shipping hub. Its interior is informed by the organic, roving nature of ant farms, according to the architect, with split-level social spaces visible through the gridded glass and steel frame exterior. The building also features several outdoor terraces accessible through the communal spaces — in line with WeWork’s mission to create more community-focused work environments.

WeWork will design all its own interiors, which have become a calling card of their branding. With homey couches, warm wall graphics and a focus on wood and copper textures, their offices often resemble hip coffeeshops more than offices, and almost all of them actually do contain a coffee counter with an ever-changing roster of public programming. Dock 72’s ground floor, supported by 20 V-shaped steel beams, will be designed by Fogarty Finger and contain the building’s dining facilities.

The project’s topping out marks the next phase of a major new development for the Navy Yard, which will also include a Wegmans supermarket in the old Admiral’s Row building and a massive Green Manufacturing Center—the tenants of which are, in an unlikely coupling, a body armor manufacturer for the U.S. Military and a Marvel Architects-designed research and manufacturing space called New Lab. Marvel will also be working on the ground floor of one of the Navy Yard’s largest projects, Building 77, a one-million-square-foot structure bridging DUMBO and Williamsburg. Additionally, MAST Brothers Chocolate Makers and Brooklyn Brewery will be moving into newly renovated spaces within the 300-acre mega-development.

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