Mayor Bloomberg Announces the Selection of Midtown Equities to Redevelop the Empire Stores and St. Ann’s Warehouse at Brooklyn Bridge Park

Aerial View_Credit Studio V

Mayor Bloomberg announced today that Midtown Equities, in partnership with Rockwood Capital and HK Organization, to redevelop Empire Stores, vacant warehouse buildings in Dumbo and Fulton Ferry Landing. The adaptive reuse plans call for commercial uses including restaurant, event, retail and office space. While this selection announced a few weeks ago, the announcement makes this official, and NYC added new renderings of the Empire Stores and Tobacco Warehouse.

In addition, the board also approved a long-term lease with St. Ann’s Warehouse to develop a theater in the historic Tobacco Warehouse.

TW, St. Ann's Warehouse, Water Street_Credit Rogers Marvel Architects

The announcement also highlights the completion of a federal process that will allow for the addition of new parkland at Main Street in Dumbo (first announced in May). “All across the waterfront, we are reclaiming and renewing areas that have long been abandoned or neglected, and Empire Stores and the Tobacco Warehouse are the latest examples of that work,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “These redevelopment plans will bring even more new life and excitement to the DUMBO waterfront at Brooklyn Bridge Park, giving residents and visitors more places to work, shop, dine, and experience the arts. The expansion and success of the park is due in large part to our partnerships with New York State Parks and the National Park Service, and we are grateful for their help.”

The Empire Stores are a complex of seven contiguous four- and five-story historic warehouses containing approximately 347,000 gross square feet. The warehouses, located in DUMBO, were built between 1869 and 1885 and primarily used for coffee storage until they were abandoned in the 1960s. The warehouses have been closed for over 50 years due to deteriorated buildings conditions. Redevelopment will reactivate the structure and allow for a mix of commercial, retail and office uses that complement that unique character of this industrial waterfront structure. A team led by Midtown Equities will enter into a 96-year ground lease of the site. Their proposed building plan will feature nearly 80,000 square feet of restaurant, retail, and event space and 300,000 square feet of office space.

BBP North Park Map_Credit BBP

West Elm is expected to anchor the Empire Stores building by leasing both office and retail space of more than 150,000 square feet of space. (West Elm Press release). According to a West Elm press release, the new West Elm store will occupy the ground-floor space at 55 Water Street and will include waterfront-outdoor seating and a coffee shop created in partnership with La Colombe (similar to the existing one at West Elm Market), bringing coffee back to the former coffee warehouse after more than 50 years.

In addition, Midtown Equities is in talks with the Brooklyn Historical Society to include 3,200 square feet of exhibition space as part of the project to celebrate the rich cultural history of the borough. Construction is expected to being in early 2014 with an expected completion of fall 2015.

With the John Street condos and park at the Brooklyn Bridge Park also anticipated to begin in 2014 with expected completion in winter 2015, the north-east end of Brooklyn Bridge Park will be full of construction.

(Photos courtesy of NYC Mayor’s Office)

Press Releases:
{ Press Release}
{ Press Release}
{West Elm Press Release}

{New Recreation Area Design for Brooklyn Bridge Park Pier 6 Unveiled, 28Aug2013}
{Midtown Equities selected to transform the Empire Stores in Brooklyn Bridge Park, 26Aug2013}
{NYC Announces Developers for John Street Condos at Brooklyn Bridge Park, 01Aug2013}
{Empire Stores Proposal Responses, 14Jun2013}
{Brooklyn Bridge Park Main Street Conversion Proposed Design, 30May2013}
{Brooklyn Bridge Park Issues a Request to Develop Empire Stores, 02Oct2012}

For more photo renderings, click more below.
Empire Stores Courtyard_Credit Studio V
Empire Stores Interior Passthrough_Credit Studio V
Empire Stores Rooftop_Credit Studio V
TW, St. Ann's Warehouse, Waterfront_Credit Rogers Marvel Architects

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