Sou Fujimoto Architects (SFA), in collaboration with The Collective, a London-based coliving developer, will be developing the former Slave Theater site at 1215 Fulton, in Bedford Stuyvesant, Brooklyn. The building, currently in permitting, is projected to open in 2022. The 10-story, 240,000 square-foot project will be composed of three separate structures and will feature a mix of public cultural space and coliving apartment units. Its form takes inspiration from New York City’s local building typologies, iconic water tower tanks, and plentiful rooftop living spaces. This will be the Tokyo- and Paris-based office’s first foray into red brick, which was derived from the surrounding buildings of the historic neighborhood. Ammr Vandal, US Architecture Director at The Collective, said the decision to work with Sou Fujimoto was an immediate and definitive choice, because of the “empathy and creativity that runs across the studio’s body of work.” Fujimoto’s office approached the formal design of this project through a process of subtractive carvings, establishing key amenity spaces as void spaces within an otherwise generic block of housing. “A certain curiosity is developed towards the building, where you can see something which stands out but and feel intrigued and invited into what is going on inside,” said the architects in a design statement. A large lobby space designed to engage the public at street level will help establish a mid-block connection between Halsey and Fulton Streets, and taps into a stepped interior courtyard—the building’s largest common space, which will be open to the public. Glossy white interiors work to create a homogeneous space which the architects say will “receive the varied individual identities of each future member and local visitor.” The project is rallying behind the cultural prominence of its immediate site—the former Slave Theater—which served as a social gathering point, an icon of the civil rights movement, and a symbol of black pride in Brooklyn from 1984 to 1998. “Designing for New York presents such a significant moment for our practice,” said Sou Fujimoto in a design statement. “I am honored, in particular, to be working in a culturally rich neighborhood like Bed-Stuy, and to reimagine this historic site. I hope our design will sustain and serve the incredible culture of this community.” Along these lines, Vandal said the project team had a deep appreciation and respect for planning the redevelopment of such a significant site: “We have been actively working with key neighborhood stakeholders, including the Community Board, local organizations and groups, and plan to continue throughout development process to ensure we are honoring The Slave Theater's legacy in response to local input.” In addition to providing free housing and studio space for 6-to-10 participants per year, 1215 Fulton’s development includes various theatrical and social gathering spaces intended to be activated with local artists, community-focused business incubation, and an accelerator program for young entrepreneurs. It remains to be seen how this heightened sensitivity to context, with white-washed interiors and blend of public, cultural, and private residential programming will pan out here. And likely, we won’t know until the paint dries and the novelty of coliving typology normalizes. It is a tall order to attempt to recover the memory of such a public site, but if anyone can pull it off, it might just be this team. PROJECT DETAILS AND CREDITS Total Square Footage: 240,000 Number of Units: 440 Number of Floors: 10 Completion: 2022 Gross Development Value: $260 million Design Architect: Sou Fujimoto Architects Architect of Record: Ismael Leyva Architects Development Partner: Tower Holdings Group
Posts tagged with "Bed-Stuy":
David Adjaye is teaming up with the U.S.’s first community development corporation (CDC) to revitalize its home of 50 years. Restoration Plaza, headquarters of the Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation in Brooklyn, New York, will get a total revamp through a five-year strategic plan that will include input from local residents. Located on Fulton Street, the campus has long been a community anchor in Bedford-Stuyvesant, or Bed-Stuy, as the neighborhood is known. The complex currently houses office space, a restaurant, commercial tenants, the Brooklyn Business Center, and the recently-renovated, historic Billie Holiday Theatre. Adjaye Associates will work with Restoration and local residents to redefine the 300,000-square-foot commercial plaza and add 400,000 square feet of office space to the site. For the influential nonprofit, the massive undertaking will further its mission of disrupting and closing the racial wealth gap in Central Brooklyn—something that’s becoming an even bigger focal point as the area gentrifies and longtime residents feel the pressure of higher rents. Through the plan, Restoration will create new centers—one for personal financial health, one for community asset building, one for social entrepreneurship and enterprise, as well as new accommodations for its existing RestorationART program. These initiatives will help bridge existing inequities by providing locals the assistance they need to continue investing in Bed-Stuy’s future amidst its rapid growth. Since it was established in 1967, Restoration has played a key role in the neighborhood’s development. A predominantly low-income area, it served as a testing ground for the Special Impact Program, an amendment to the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964 that was started by Senator Jacob K. Javits, Mayor John W. Lindsay, and Senator Robert F. Kennedy. The plan saw business leaders from around the country, including those from the Rockefeller Brothers Foundation and the Ford Foundation, invest in the build-out of what would become the Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation. The plaza, which envelops all of Restoration’s offices and the businesses its attracted over the years, was renovated in the early 2000s, and has been repeatedly updated since then. This new overhaul and expansion by Adjaye Associates will bring a modern feel to the site in hopes of boosting job growth across various industries in the area, including tech, fashion, and hospitality—sectors that are largely burgeoning along the Brooklyn waterfront. Though no specific details for the site’s renovation have been released yet, the nonprofit said it aims to build new spaces that better attract these innovative businesses. For Adjaye, he’s ready for the chance to physically build upon Restoration’s rich legacy and announce its influence through new architecture that the locals deserve. “Our team is embarking on a notable mission to re-imagine Restoration Plaza and showcase its impact on the Bed-Stuy community and the country,” said Adjaye in a statement. “As the nation’s first CDC, Restoration has a long history of setting a high standard for the advancement of African American and Caribbean residents who built Central Brooklyn and poured their soul into the community. It’s our honor to be a part of this powerful five-year plan to remake this iconic community epicenter and tackle the large challenge of sustained wealth through the closure of a heartbreaking wealth gap in this city.”
Daniel Libeskind has been a New York City resident since his teenage years, but, as has been noted, the acclaimed architect has yet to realize a ground-up project there. That may be about to change, as Studio Libeskind has released renderings of its geometric Sumner Houses Senior Building, set to rise in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn. The collaboration between Libeskind and the city is part of the broader Housing New York 2.0’s “Seniors First” program, a commitment to build affordable senior housing on land owned by the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA). The move was first announced in a January press release where NYCHA, the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD), and the New York City Housing Development Corporation (HDC) jointly announced four new partnerships under its 100% Affordable Housing program, its NextGen Neighborhoods program, and its FHA Vacant Homes program. Libeskind has been tapped to design senior housing on the western “site 2” parcel of the Sumner Houses superblock, a NYCHA-owned plot on the northern edge of the Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood. The 10-story, 129,928-square-foot apartment building will hold 197 permanently affordable units, along with over 10,000-square feet of ground-level community space for residents along Marcus Garvey Boulevard. “I am extremely grateful and inspired by this opportunity to contribute to the Bed-Stuy community,” said Libeskind in a statement sent to AN. “I believe I can speak for our entire team that our goal is to serve the senior community by creating homes that give a sense of civic pride and create more much needed affordable housing in New York City.” The firm’s design is a definite break from the boxy brick buildings commonly seen in affordable housing throughout the neighborhood. Libeskind has taken a more geometric approach, twisting and cutting away at the typical rectangular form to create an almost crystalline structure. According to Libeskind, the alternating open and solid elements and series of lifts and cuts are meant to create a lively interaction with the street and surrounding area. The building’s mass twists and lifts as it rises, and the double-height, glazed entrance lobby should give expansive views of the surrounding Sumner Houses block. Inside, corridor sightlines have been aligned to look inward on a central public courtyard. Construction on the Sumner Houses Senior Building should be complete in 2020. A comprehensive fact sheet on the building's affordability breakdown can be found here.
Fulton Street, the bustling commercial strip of the Brooklyn neighborhood, Bedford Stuyvesant, has just received a much-needed makeover. The Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corp., along with community stakeholders and city officials, gathered this morning at the new Marcy Plaza to celebrate the completion of a $20 million neighborhood revitalization project, funded by the city. The organization led efforts to revamp Restoration Plaza with the help Garrison Architects, build a new plaza along Marcy Avenue, implement public art, and overhaul a mile-long stretch along Fulton Street with expanded sidewalks, new benches, trees, plantings, bike racks, and lighting. These streetscape improvements aim to bolster local businesses and support the local residential community by creating a safer and more walkable neighborhood. "This is a perfect model of public and private partnership that led to beautiful public art," said Kyle Kimball, the president of the New York City Economic Development Corporation, at the ribbon cutting. "[The plaza] makes the neighborhood more accessible." This project is just one piece of a larger plan to revitalize Bedford-Stuyvesant, which has also spurred $100 million in private investment dedicated to building roughly 300 mixed-income housing units and 40,000 square feet of commercial space in the neighborhood. "This neighborhood revitalization project will not only provide Bed-Stuy residents with an opportunity to enjoy the neighborhood's beauty and culture, but will also provide housing, business opportunities and shopping destinations for the people of our community and its visitors," said Colvin W. Grannum, CEO and President of Bedford-Stuyvesant Restoration Corp., in a statement. At the new Marcy Plaza, a public art installation by artist Ellen Harvey, entitled "Mathematical Star," was also unveiled. This piece, funded by the Department of Cultural Affair's Percent for Art program, is a mosaic made up of different patterns inspired by photographs of iconic landmarks in Bed-Stuy.