Tobacco Warehouse

Tobacco Warehouse

Reprinted from NY Times, The City section 12Apr2009, by Michael Pollak:

Within These Walls

Q. As the Q train crosses the East River, I’m looking at a large space just north of the Brooklyn Bridge on the Brooklyn side: brick-colored walls several stories high, with no doors, windows or roof, surrounding an empty space. What is it?

A. A parkland performance space named for what it used to be: the Tobacco Warehouse.

Built in the 1870s by the Lorillard family as a tobacco customs inspection center, it was saved from demolition in 1898 and repaired in 2002 by the State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation.

Its 18,000-square-foot interior, free of columns, is used for concerts, weddings, special events and video shoots, according to the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy.

It sits at the inside edge of Empire-Fulton Ferry State Park, and plans are to incorporate it in the future Brooklyn Bridge State Park, a 1.3-mile stretch along the East River from north of the Manhattan Bridge to Atlantic Avenue.

To apply for a permit to hold an event in the Tobacco Warehouse, please contact Andrew Williams at or (212) 866-2005.