CASE STUDY // BLDG 92: Brooklyn Navy Yard Center

IMG_2066   IMG_2065


Address:  63 Flushing Ave, BLDG 92, Unit 300, Brooklyn, NY 11205

Founder: BNYDC

Institution Type: Non-Profit Organization

Visit Hours: Wednesday-Sunday 12 pm-6 pm

Admission: Free

Mission: The main mission of BLDG 92 is to promote economic development, provide jobs and develop corporations as well as educate visitors about the rich history of the navy yard.


BLDG 92 Architecture

The Brooklyn Navy Yards is a place rich with American history; fortunately for us that history has been conveniently exhibited in a poetic showcase of steel and glass known as BLDG 92; which tries to epitomize the ideals of the old, and new uses of the Brooklyn Navy Yards. The architect ties the old commandants house designed by  Thomas Ustick Walter in 1858, along with the new contemporary addition by Beyer Blinder Belle through a series of subtle formal moves that experientially bring the visitors awareness towards the apparent temporal tie.  The entry atrium displays catwalk-like bridges that hover off the wall and suspend in air as they once have in the ships docked within the shipping yards of Brooklyn. The older brick facade of the commandants house was left intact and given breathing room, or left in relief, in order to distinguish the visitors movement towards the “past” or the museum sector of the building. This space is lit heavenly from the above skylights in order to highlight the temporal spectacle in which the visitor has begun to partake in.

BLDG 92 is also highly innovative and sustainable. The building is LEED Platinum certified and is known for its adaptive reuse. The museum uses the old sewage from the 19th century to collect the rainwater off the roof and includes a geothermal system that heats and cools the building. An extensive solar screen has also been installed to protect from any heat gain. The building is entirely locally sourced and made with recycled materials as well as built from local labor. At the entrance, a wind-solar street lamp, known as LUMI-SOLAIR,  is installed and is quiet unique in its ability to collect energy from wind turbines and solar panels. It is a sustainable model that is being installed throughout the yard and is one of the only lamps that remained lit during Hurricane Sandy.

IMG_9742   IMG_9705credit: Roberto De Vicente Pina


Navy Yard History 

In 1801 president John Adams authorized the establishment of the Brooklyn Navy Yard. In the early 19th century, the Yard was a key component of a naval-industrial complex and went through numerous mechanical developments. Building and repairing ships was a key component of the site. Goods from all over the world came to Yard to be loaded aboard Navy Ships. The industrial capacity and location made it America’s best port and transportation hub. In 1917 the Yard entered World War I and took on the role of supplying to allies around the globe. It produced America’s most famous fighting ships, including the USS Maine and the USS Missouri. The Yard became known as the “Can-Do-Yard” due to its production of 250 ships and reparation of over 5,000 ships. More than 70,000 workers were employed during the war. In 1986 the largest tenant that built ships went bankrupt. In 1966 the yard was shut down and left 9,000 workers unemployed and the site remained with 45 buildings and 300 acres of land.



Diverse Industrial Production  

From the start, production at the Navy Yards was persecuted locally and by skilled craftsmanship. Today there is a wide range of products that are technological, high quality and sustainable. BLDG 92 showcases the diversity of products that the tenants of the Navy Yards fabricate, which has made the Yard a national model for sustainable urban industrial manufacturing. Some examples include Ice Stone, which recycles glass and concrete to make counter tops. Sweet and Low produces packaged artificial sweeteners and has been one of the oldest tenants on the Yard. Steiner Studios is the biggest tenant on the Yard and is the largest american movie producer outside of Hollywood, which has filmed famous productions on site including Spider Man 3 and Boardwalk Empire.






Future Development 

The dynamic site of the Navy Yard is now seeking to develop a broad industrial sector. The mission is to become a national model for sustainable urban industrial parks. BNYDC is searching for long-term viability and sustainable practices. The Brooklyn Navy Yards contains twelve new or adaptivelyreused green industrial buildings, over two million square feet of new space and over 2,500 new jobs are being created. It is has become an attractive location for social and tech-driven companies, housing developments as well as social and cultural activity.


scan-file_2014022020233600 credit: Ensam Lee IMG_2090   Brooklyn Bridgecredit: Richard Camastra

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.