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BBB’s design for its expansive new office space in Lower Manhattan incorporates the intrinsic assets of the iconic Equitable Insurance building — excellent light, impressive views and gracious proportions — with a flexible and contemporary work environment that facilitates collaboration.
BBB’s sensitive renovation and addition to the historic Hackett Hall provides a modern and efficient academic facility, complete with an expanded, state-of-the-art library and flexible classrooms.
The centerpiece of BBB’s master plan for St. Peter’s Preparatory School is the conversion of an existing campus building into the Moriarty Science Center, a new state-of-the-art science education facility.
The Torch Club serves New York University faculty, administrators and alumni in a revitalized, historic, cast iron loft building in the heart of the Washington Square campus.
BBB’s planning and design for NYU’s “Broadway Block” creates an overall identity for the Tisch School of the Arts while still maintaining the unique character and requirements of each department.
BBB’s adaptive reuse of an outdated New York City park building at the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge creates a sustainable, new visitor center that provides space for educational, administrative and retail facilities.
BBB completed the rehabilitation of the Jacob Riis Bathhouse, an Art Deco icon affectionately known as the People’s Beach, and prepared its buildings and courtyards for enhanced public use.
BBB’s adaptive reuse of Building 1 at Newark Liberty International Airport includes the relocation and restoration of the historic Art Deco terminal and a modern addition.
BBB’s design for a 5-story dance facility in Brooklyn creates a dedicated space for a renowned dance troupe.
BBB’s master plan and restoration of the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum enhances the original character of the Gilded-Age mansion while integrating the latest in museum technologies and providing visitors with a highly interactive learning environment for the study of American design.
The new High Line Maintenance & Operations Facility serves a critical role in the upkeep and operation of New York City’s celebrated park; its design responds to the unique physical characteristics of the High Line and the surrounding Meatpacking District.
In the ongoing role of House Architect for the Church of the Heavenly Rest, BBB provides programming, preservation, and system upgrades for the historic building.
At Ellis Island, BBB has made a cultural and historical symbol of American immigration accessible to generations of visitors.
BBB’s award-winning restoration of two historic buildings at the Battleground National Cemetery contributes to the preservation of a significant Civil War landmark.
BBB has undertaken a multitude of projects with the National Park Service that assist with achieving its mission of “caring for the American legacy.”
BBB has restored a magnificent Gothic Revival cathedral to its original 1920s appearance and integrated essential mechanical and safety upgrades.
BBB helped transform the long-vacant, historic flagship Hahne & Company Department Store in downtown Newark, NJ into a vibrant mixed-use development.
Following the completion of a comprehensive Campus Master Plan, BBB converted Williams Hall — a 1903 laboratory building in the heart of the historic Asa Packer Campus — into a lively interdisciplinary academic office building.
BBB has worked with Hermès of Paris for many years, assisting in the restoration and expansion of their New York flagship store and men’s store, located in two landmark structures across Madison Avenue.
Indiana University Bloomington, Kelley School of Business, William J. Godfrey Graduate and Executive Education Center
BBB’s design for a new building on the Bloomington Campus features materials that respect the historic campus context, balanced by contemporary detailing characteristic of a modern addition.
BBB developed a comprehensive Preservation Plan that serves as the framework for the General Theological Seminary’s stewardship of its historic buildings.
BBB’s design converts four 19th-century townhouses into an innovative educational complex for SUNY’s Levin Institute.
BBB has transformed a notable 20th century Art Deco building in Brooklyn into 21st century live/work condominiums.
BBB’s design for Central Place will serve as a catalyst for the revitalization of urban life and pedestrian activity in downtown Rosslyn.
BBB’s conversion of an underground parking garage into a suite of spaces for museum operations allows additional public space to be dedicated to the visitor experience.
BBB’s design consolidates and relocates the Church Pension Group headquarters, featuring an efficient open work place strategy and a unique combination of modern and spiritually inspired spaces and details.
BBB’s adaptive reuse of a landmark printing plant creates a vibrant, mixed-use hub that supports the revitalization of the surrounding community and celebrates the area’s history.
BBB’s design for a new, multi-use residence hall creates a vertical campus for an internationally renowned music conservatory in upper Manhattan.
BBB’s interpretive design work at The Thomas Edison National Historic Park preserves an endangered piece of American history and offers visitors a glimpse into the great inventor’s home and workplace.
BBB has adaptively reused an early twentieth century landmark theater in the heart of Hyde Park to create a home for the Chicago Innovation Exchange — a central gathering place for Chicago’s innovation ecosystem and a catalyst in the ongoing renaissance of 53rd street.
BBB has played a multi-faceted role in the award-winning restoration of New York’s historic Prince George Hotel and its conversion into an affordable housing facility.
Working with the University of Chicago, BBB is promoting the revitalization of the 53rd Street district in Chicago’s Hyde Park neighborhood to create a vibrant retail and mixed-use corridor that is both attractive to the campus community and an amenity for residents.
BBB’s comprehensive renovation and rooftop addition has recharged MIT’s historic Building E52 for reinvigorated academic use and institute-wide conferencing.
For the Muhammad Ali Center, a cultural and educational institution that interprets Ali’s life story and inspirational message, BBB designed a new building on a prominent site overlooking the Ohio River.
BBB’s work at The Morgan Library & Museum preserves, restores and expands a New York City architectural treasure.
BBB’s restoration of the historic DC Courthouse revives the original grandeur of the 1820’s structure and provides additional space and enhanced facilities for The Court of Appeals.
BBB has completed the first comprehensive rehabilitation of New York City Hall in more than 50 years, incorporating 21st century systems and technology into an iconic early 19th century landmark.
Working closely with the community, BBB created an urban design vision that transforms one of the largest redevelopment sites in Manhattan into a vibrant, mixed-use hub in one of New York’s most dynamic, diverse and historic neighborhoods.
BBB’s work on the revitalization of Grand Central Terminal has transformed America’s busiest train station into a contemporary, multi-use transit and retail hub.
BBB restored the landmark 1905 Italian Renaissance mansion for the luxuriously redesigned Cartier Fifth Avenue store.
BBB’s design for a new, mixed-use facility on Baltimore’s Inner Harbor creates a lively, urban waterfront environment while remaining sympathetic to the surrounding industrial buildings.
BBB’s plan for Mission Rock creates a distinctive mixed-use development adjacent to San Francisco’s major league baseball stadium and waterfront parks.
An innovative plan reimagines Greenwich South as a 21st century live-work-play district where a confluence of workers, residents, and visitors support thriving commercial spaces, bustling street life and a robust retail sector.
BBB’s upgrades to the landmark Beaux-Arts lobby of 230 Park Avenue brings 21st century functionality into a magnificent early 20th century space.
BBB’s restoration work at The Chrysler Building helps to preserve the iconic status of one of New York City’s most beloved landmarks.
In the wake of Superstorm Sandy, BBB has developed integrated, multi-disciplinary, and site-specific resiliency measures across eight neighborhoods in Southern Brooklyn impacted by the storm.
A Vision Plan and Development Strategy for the emerging NoMA district creates a walkable, transit-accessible, dynamic, and diverse mixed-use neighborhood in an underutilized post-industrial area.
BBB restored the former Juvenile Court building in Washington DC, providing new life to a 1939 building and enabling the DC Courts to expand within a historic campus.
Providing a vision for the Atlanta Braves’ new baseball stadium district, BBB designed an active, year-round public plaza surrounded by entertainment and retail buildings at the heart of the new ballpark.
Working with the District of Columbia Office of Planning and Mayor Anthony Williams, the “Vision for Growing an Inclusive City” creates a vision and policy framework for the entire city, focusing on bridging social and physical divides and utilizing a highly participatory public engagement process.
BBB completed a Comprehensive Building Plan for Washington DC’s premier performing arts center, a roadmap for capital planning.
Framework plans for the Southwest Waterfront and Near Southeast neighborhoods target key redevelopment areas in a visionary plan to revitalize a vast urban riverfront, enabling transformative mixed-use development and public waterfront open space.
Riverdale Country School’s Upper Campus has been transformed over a 20 year period through the implementation of BBB’s master plan and the renovation of nine academic buildings.
BBB’s Master Plan for The Baltimore Basilica sets restoration goals for the oldest Roman Catholic Cathedral in the United States.
A comprehensive redevelopment master plan for a 56-acre site in Glen Cove, NY envisions the dramatic rebirth of Glen Cove’s waterfront area, which has served industrial uses for over a century.
At the Graybar Building in Midtown Manhattan, BBB restored and rejuvenated the exterior and public spaces to ensure the building’s competitive position in the commercial real estate market.
BBB developed an award-winning Preservation Master Plan and phased implementation for the historic St. Thomas Church in New York City.
BBB’s renovation of the landmark-designated Old House of Delegates Chamber restores the room’s original Victorian aesthetic, while discreetly incorporating contemporary technology.
BBB designed a white box space with environmental controls to house temporary exhibitions for the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of Natural History.
BBB restored the Summerhouse, a historic hexagon-shaped jewel of a building on the west front lawn of the US Capitol, built as a resting place for visitors.
BBB has restored the Robert A. Taft Memorial, Washington DC’s oldest carillon and one of the finest in the world.
Situated along the C&O Canal in the heart of Georgetown, a new, high-end residential building features sweeping views of the Potomac River.
BBB was selected as the winner of the “City of the Future: A Design and Engineering Challenge” for Washington DC, a competition (inspired by the History Channel series, Cities of the Underworld) in which eight teams of architects and designers were challenged to envision what the capital city will look like one hundred years from now.
BBB’s decade-long commitment to planning for the City of Fort Lauderdale establishes a design-based vision for a vibrant, pedestrian-oriented downtown, and a public realm plan to activate the Riverwalk and Arts & Entertainment District, all reinforcing the New River as the city’s central public space.
BBB’s multi-phase renovation at the Apollo includes the meticulous restoration, creative reinterpretation, and expansion of one of New York City’s most fabled theaters.
BBB’s restoration gives the historic Red Star Line inspection station new life as a museum that celebrates the emigrant experience.
BBB’s award-winning master plan for the Hoboken Ferry Terminal has restored a historic transportation hub and revitalized New Jersey’s Hudson River waterfront.
BBB’s design for a bold, contemporary residential building adjacent to the landmark Washington Hilton near Dupont Circle takes cues from the hotel’s distinctive curvilinear geometry.
BBB’s Master Plan for Jones Beach State Park includes adaptive reuse of its monumental and exuberantly detailed Art Deco bath houses and restaurant buildings strung along the mile-long boardwalk.
BBB’s design for the US Diplomacy Center features engaging exhibits that facilitate public understanding of the critical role American diplomacy has played in shaping our nation and the world.
BBB created a visionary urban design plan to transform a neglected 23-block waterfront area of Columbus into an entirely new mixed-use neighborhood.
BBB’s design guidelines for the PATH commuter rail system provide comprehensive recommendations for stations and an overall visual identity for the system.
34 Leonard Street is a contemporary, mixed-use building that respects the historic character of its surroundings in the heart of Manhattan’s Tribeca neighborhood.
BBB’s interiors for the renovated River Houses promote community and student well-being while accentuating the character and historic features of each House.
BBB has converted an early 1900s manufacturing building on the Brooklyn waterfront into loft-style condominiums.
BBB has transformed a landmark warehouse (circa 1894) into The Shephard, a contemporary residential building in the heart of the West Village that preserves its original character and blends seamlessly into its historic surroundings.
Atlanta’s first mixed-use development, an iconic mid-century modern complex, will be transformed with a focus on the pedestrian experience.
BBB’s restoration of a historic Polo Stable on Long Island enables the building to function as a modern equestrian center for many generations to come.
A Planning Framework for Columbia University establishes a foundation for creative and sensitive decision-making regarding all aspects of the built and natural environment on the Columbia Campus and within the surrounding Morningside Heights community.
BBB’s design for a sophisticated Manhattan residence combines classic materials with modern interpretive details.
BBB has designed a contemporary residential building inspired by the historic character of its surroundings in the heart of Boerum Hill, Brooklyn.
Originally built in 1961 as a postal storage facility and converted into a hotel in 1992, 138 Lafayette Street is now a fully renovated and re-envisioned boutique hotel—11 Howard—in a transformative part of Manhattan’s Soho neighborhood.
A comprehensive Campus Plan for Princeton University establishes a multi-disciplinary framework for accommodating significant academic expansion while preserving the intimate, park-like character of the campus, and creating a new regional Arts and Transit hub.
BBB’s multi-phase work with the Temple Beth-El congregation unifies their facility into a modern campus for reform Judaism.
A new, multi-theater venue for Off-Broadway productions establishes a community of performance spaces just steps away from the Broadway theater district.
The Strategic Framework Plan for Stony Brook University provides a coordinated approach to campus growth and development, in concert with a transformative greening of the campus core landscape.
BBB’s design for the Power & Light District has restored life to downtown Kansas City by integrating a livable and walkable neighborhood district into the surrounding urban fabric.
The award winning preservation plans for the Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor re-envisioned the canal system as a 524-mile linear park utilizing recreational improvements to enhance economic development and highlight the rich cultural and historical heritage of the corridor and its necklace of villages, towns, and cities.
BBB is collaborating on a contemporary, high-rise residential tower located near the High Line in West Chelsea with breathtaking views of the Hudson River, Lower Manhattan, and Midtown.
The Game Innovation Lab at the NYU Tandon School of Engineering brings together students and faculty from a variety of disciplines to explore the future of digital game design.
BBB has designed three restaurants for a new entertainment complex in Reno, Nevada that transforms several underutilized blocks into a vibrant link between the city’s core and its riverfront.
100 Eleventh Avenue is a condominium tower overlooking the Hudson River, featuring a distinctive, curved curtain wall never before seen in New York City.
BBB’s comprehensive ten year campus plan for Harvard Business School resulted in an innovative reorganization of buildings to create indoor and outdoor spaces that encourage informal interactions among faculty, staff and students.
The Hilton Times Square is a bold hotel complex that is connected both physically and aesthetically to a dense mix of retail, restaurants, tourist attractions, and entertainment spaces in the heart of Times Square.
BBB’s programming, building assessment, and space utilization studies for St. Peter’s Preparatory School have been followed by a series of major capital improvements throughout the multi-building campus.
BBB’s work on the Lincoln Center Promenade creates a vibrant, new cultural corridor that better connects the Performing Arts Center with the surrounding cityscape.
BBB’s work at Temple Emanu-El restores and preserves the largest and one of the most architecturally magnificent Jewish houses of worship in the world.
BBB’s capital needs survey and master plan captures current and future programmatic needs for the various constituent arts organizations at New York’s renowned performing arts campus.
At Holly Hunt, BBB has created an elegant flagship showroom that complements the rich materiality and modern detailing of the furniture on display.
BBB revitalized the former Board of Education headquarters building in downtown Brooklyn, transforming it into condominiums, community space, and public parking.
BBB’s design for a new mixed-use building at Columbia University creates a home for a progressive K-8 school, as well as premier faculty housing and ground floor retail.
Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis, Health Information and Translational Sciences Building (IUPUI HITS)
BBB’s design for IUPUI’s new HITS building fosters an interdisciplinary approach to scientific inquiry and learning.
BBB transformed three turn-of-the-century buildings on the General Theological Seminary’s campus to create an educational conference center and a new public face on Tenth Avenue.
139 Wooster Street is a residential and retail space on two joined lots in the heart of the SoHo Cast Iron Historic District.
Through the renovation and expansion of one of America’s first enclosed shopping centers, BBB has designed a new model for the ubiquitous suburban mall.
BBB’s design for Fourth Street Live! turns an antiquated enclosed mall into a vibrant, open-air entertainment district.
BBB’s renovation of the landmark ‘21’ Club Restaurant combines contemporary materials and finishes with restored historic details to attract a new generation of patrons while maintaining its exclusive reputation and ambiance.
BBB’s comprehensive renovation of the Roth Dining Pavilion creates a vibrant hub for eating, studying, and socializing.
BBB’s design for a vibrant new residential community at the Watchcase Factory retains the spirit of the historic building through the restoration of original materials and details.
BBB’s design for a new Student Center at one of New York City’s premier independent school creates additional student service facilities that feature gracious panoramic views of the campus and Van Cortlandt Park.
BBB’s multi-phase restoration of the Marine Air Terminal preserves a historic Art Deco landmark at LaGuardia Airport.
BBB’s award-winning design for the Henry Luce III Center provides a modern exhibition facility within the fourth floor of the New-York Historical Society building.
BBB’s rehabilitation of Newark Penn Station has restored its historic character, added amenities, and contributed to the revitalization of downtown Newark.
BBB has transformed two 19th century mansions into a retail stage for one of Manhattan’s famed luxury department stores, preserving and celebrating their original materials and details.
Located in the heart of the Lower East Side, 215 Chrystie Street is a vibrant ground-up boutique hotel concept in New York City.
A vision to reposition Downtown Far Rockaway as a vibrant and inviting pedestrian-oriented district with retail and affordable housing that serves local residents and attracts a broad mix of visitors.
An urban design and investment framework to support affordable housing, job creation, and waterfront development in the South Bronx.
BBB’s contemporary design for a new restaurant and café at The Met Breuer is inspired by Marcel Breuer’s striking mid-century architecture.
The comprehensive campus master plan for Phillips Academy honors a historic campus while guiding its evolution to meet 21st -century needs.
A Framework Plan for the historic Amherst College campus creates a flexible housing strategy that adapts to evolving priorities and projects while abiding by strong guiding principles.
A vision for wide-ranging and implementable projects increases the social, economic, and environmental resiliency of three distinct Rockaway Peninsula communities facing the impacts of Superstorm Sandy and the pressures of climate change.
33 East 74th Street is a vibrant residential addition to the Upper East Side Historic District, providing contemporary residences behind restored historic facades.
Designed as a contemporary jewel box, the Rare Book Room at The Center for Jewish History is secure yet transparent, serving as both an archival repository and a venue for revolving exhibits.
The Strategic Opportunity Plan provides a broad vision and identity for the Uptown area of Cincinnati by improving circulation, connectivity, open space, centers of activity and the physical relationships of large institutions to their neighborhoods.
In Shanghai’s historic Luwan District, BBB has transformed a 6.45-hectare site into a landscaped cultural park, including a new 2,000-seat theater with a geometrically complex envelope design.
The reimagining of New York Public Library’s Midtown Campus includes the renovation of the historic and iconic Stephen A. Schwarzman Building on 42nd Street and the central circulating branch, the Mid-Manhattan Library, across 5th Avenue.
BBB’s design for Site 5 brings market rate and affordable housing to the Lower East Side neighborhood of Manhattan.
Located on a through-block site in the heart of the emerging Hudson Square neighborhood, 70 Charlton is a new ground up residential building consisting of 91 market rate units and 30 affordable housing units.
The South Street Seaport Museum is the cultural focus of four blocks of new and restored buildings in lower Manhattan.
As master planner for the eight-campus Indiana University system over a ten-year period, BBB provided comprehensive planning services and designed several new campus buildings.
BBB’s long-term commitment to planning for the Coney Island community includes an overall vision plan and design guidelines for the revitalization of this world famous amusement destination.
A comprehensive master plan for a new university campus and associated community will guide development of a resilient, mixed-use living and learning environment within a spectacular East African landscape.
BBB’s interior restoration of The Beacon Theatre ensures the continuation of its legacy as New York City’s premier, intimate “rock house.”
An urban design master plan supports the rezoning and transformation of Willets Point from a 62-acre contaminated waterfront site into a model green neighborhood for New York City with mixed-income housing, retail and entertainment amenities, public open space, community facilities, a hotel, and a convention center.
BBB’s work at Union Depot restores a grand public building in St. Paul to its original use as a train station, re-establishing an architectural icon and providing an engine for economic and urban revitalization.
Through architecture, landscape, and sustainability, BLDG 92 provides a new face and neighborhood identity for the historically significant Brooklyn Navy Yard.
BBB’s award-winning Comprehensive Physical Plan for the University at Buffalo created a vision and implementation strategy to support the university’s goal to grow its population by 40 percent.
BBB led a team of architects, historians, artists, and craftsmen in the restoration of New York’s famed Empire State Building.
BBB’s design for the Harvard Undergraduate House Renewal Program preserves the spirit and culture of each residential House by creating a home away from home for students during their swing year.
BBB’s revitalization of Rockefeller Center greatly enhances its public and retail spaces, ensuring a prosperous future for the beloved New York City landmark.
BBB has transformed a high-end retail emporium into a contemplative environment for the Rubin Museum of Art, the largest facility devoted to Himalayan art in the Western World.
BBB’s transformation of a 1904 gymnasium building creates a contemporary identity for Denison University’s Art Department and promotes the cross-fertilization of visual arts disciplines under one roof.
BBB’s work at the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament preserves its historic character while stabilizing the exterior envelope and restoring the interior.
Under a GSA Design Excellence contract, BBB led a multi-disciplinary team on a comprehensive renovation to prepare the historic Thurgood Marshall US Courthouse for 21st century use.
At the New York Botanical Garden, BBB has restored a crown jewel of conservatory architecture.
BBB’s design for the redevelopment of Eero Saarinen’s mid-century masterpiece reactivates this international landmark and opens it to the public as a hotel, restaurant and conference center.
BBB’s master plan and expansion for Xavier High School directly support the institution’s guiding pedagogical goals while meeting the growing requirements of the school and its students.
BBB’s rehabilitation of the Main Fountain Garden at Longwood will revitalize the historic heart of one of the most celebrated public gardens in the world.
The Campus Master Plan for Dartmouth supports key strategic initiatives, within a framework of connectivity and landscape to guide development of academic, residential and campus life spaces.
BBB transformed a former hotel on Madison Avenue into a luxury residential building with two stories of first-class retail space.
Building on Lehigh University’s rich campus history, mountainside setting, and urban context, a comprehensive master plan complements the University Strategic Plan, preserving and enhancing Lehigh’s unique position as a “residential research campus.”
BBB’s renovation of the Enoch Pratt Free Library integrates state-of-the-art digital technology and mechanical systems while preserving the character of the beloved historic main branch of the Maryland State Library system.
BBB’s restoration of The TWA Flight Center at JFK International Airport prepares an icon of modern architecture for future adaptive reuse.
BBB has guided the restoration of Marcel Breuer’s iconic 1966 building – originally designed as the Whitney Museum – and helped transform it into The Met Breuer. In this iconic space, The Metropolitan Museum of Art presents exhibitions of modern and contemporary art. The building is bold and intimate at the same time, with an integrity, beauty, and honesty of design, materials, and execution that places it among the most distinguished mid-century modern buildings in New York.
RH Greenwich preserves the Greenwich Post Office building’s historic character and prominence in downtown Greenwich. Intended to harmonize with the landmark building and the community it serves, RH Greenwich has been tremendously positive for both.
This past Friday, BBB proudly hosted First Friday – The Architectural League of New York’s popular monthly open house at which its members visit the office of a leading design practice in the city.
In the spring of 2016, BBB inaugurated a firm-wide research award competition designed to support innovative ideas that have the potential to positively disrupt BBB’s practice – how we work and how we design. The research awards are sponsored by the firm’s RED – Research Exchange Develop – initiative launched in 2015 and aimed at promoting research; encouraging a culture of open dialogue, creativity, and critical exchange; and fostering development and propagation of ideas and applications that align with BBB’s practice and culture. Ten provocative proposals – ranging from conceptual ideas and social issues to material, fabrication, and technology – were submitted by individuals and teams from both the New York and Washington DC offices. Two winning teams received stipends after being selected by a blind jury comprised of a cross section of BBB and outside design professionals. Research findings and working process of both teams are currently on display in both BBB offices, and highlights are included in this Story and a related Story on Data Driven (Urban) Design. FABRICation – Flexible Adaptable Block, a Responsive and Intelligent Construct, by Natalya Shimanovskaya and Lissette Méndez-Boyer, combines material exploration of fabric through knitting and crocheting, with a parallel digital and technological exploration of design through parametric application, ultimately expressed in a physical installation.
BBB’s office at 120 Broadway in lower Manhattan recently achieved LEED Gold status. Thank you to our design team who made this possible: Elizabeth Leber, Margaret Kittinger, Anna Grabowska, and Steve McCarthy. Designed in collaboration with our sustainability consultants YRG, select sustainable features which contributed to the LEED Gold recognition are listed below:
The Bronx Chamber of Commerce presented its Adaptive Reuse Award for the Banknote Building, designed by BBB, at its Inaugural Building Awards ceremony held on October 29. BBB’s adaptive reuse of the landmark 1909 printing plant in the Hunts Point neighborhood of the Bronx creates a vibrant, mixed-use hub that supports the revitalization of the surrounding community and celebrates the area’s history.
An article in The New York Times examines how Grand Central Terminal, one of America’s great civic spaces, still captures our attention. David Dunlap’s piece, accompanied by a time-lapse video shot by Damon Winter, takes a look at the iconic Oyster Bar ramp hall, which was reclaimed in a comprehensive renovation by BBB.
In the spring of 2016, BBB inaugurated a firm-wide research award competition designed to support innovative ideas that have the potential to positively disrupt BBB’s practice – how we work and how we design. The research awards are sponsored by the firm’s RED – Research Exchange Develop – initiative launched in 2015 and aimed at promoting research; encouraging a culture of open dialogue, creativity, and critical exchange; and fostering development and propagation of ideas and applications that align with BBB’s practice and culture. Ten provocative proposals – ranging from conceptual ideas and social issues to material, fabrication, and technology – were submitted by individuals and teams from both the New York and Washington DC offices. Two winning teams received stipends after being selected by a blind jury comprised of a cross section of BBB and outside design professionals. Research findings and working process of both teams are currently on display in both BBB offices, and highlights are included in this Story and a related Story on FABRICation. Data Driven (Urban) Design, comprised of DC and NY staff Scott Archer, Elizabeth Ellington, Caroline VanAcker, and Michael O’Neill, advances the collective knowledge and database of NYC and DC waterfronts, engaging GIS-mapping tools to generate data-rich urban design models.
In the December issue editorial of Architectural Record, editor-in-chief Cathleen McGuigan writes about the publication’s recent move into the Empire State Building and chronicles the icon’s history and transformation into a national model for the sustainable retrofitting of historic landmarks.
The renovation of the Art Deco-style Tower Building in Washington DC will create sustainable Class-A office space with unique shared amenities that enhance the historic character of the National Register building and introduce an iconic presence with minimal disruption to existing tenants. The project scope includes exterior restoration, renovation of common core areas, and construction of new facilities including a conference center, fitness center, and bike room, as well as the design of graphics and signage.
North American Properties has enlisted Beyer Blinder Belle in collaboration with Atlanta-based Lord Aeck Sargent to “reimagine” Midtown Atlanta’s Colony Square. A preliminary conceptualization was released today:
Across the Potomac River from Washington, DC, Rosslyn’s Central Place – a new mixed-use development designed by BBB for the JBG Companies – broke ground in April. Located immediately adjacent to the Rosslyn Metro station, the pair of high-rise buildings – one residential, one an office building – is envisioned as a catalyst for revitalizing downtown Rosslyn, an area that currently suffers from limited urban character and public amenities.
The Greenwich Post Office building, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, has been adaptively reused to house a Restoration Hardware flagship showroom referred to as “RH Greenwich, The Gallery at the Historic Post Office”. BBB served as a consultant for historic preservation. “The interior…has now been transformed to serve as an architectural canvas,” said Frank Prial Jr., Associate Partner at BBB.
This week, members of the National Trust for Historic Preservation are gathering for “PastForward 2015”, a conference and celebration of the National Historic Preservation Act’s 50th anniversary. BBB’s Kate Lemos McHale, Frank Prial, and Fred Bland are joining a wide array of preservation players from individuals to elected officials, federal agencies to architects, scholars to activists.
In our first installment of “In Construction,” a new series that explores behind-the-scenes building technologies and methods, we take a look at Central Place* and three unique aspects of the project: the challenges of building within and connections around a transit hub; capitalizing views atop Metro DC’s tallest building; and the James Carpenter-designed lobby.
BBB is proud to be moving up the ranks in the following surveys:
The 1055 Wisconsin Avenue project seamlessly blends new residential and retail components into the heart of Georgetown overlooking the historic C&O Canal. BBB team members visited the site to view progress of Georgetown’s latest condominium residences, located only steps from Washington Harbour, Waterfront Park, and the shops and bistros of M Street. Hany Hassan, FAIA, director of BBB’s DC office, reflects on the project after leading a tour of 1055 Wisconsin Avenue.
In his article for Urban Land, writer Sean Slater presents several case studies illustrating the rise of anti-suburban shopping destinations: authentic, urban retail environments purveying locally-crafted goods alongside mass produced merchandise. Among the projects featured is Chicago’s 53rd Street retail district, excerpt below:
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Take a “below-the-scenes” look at the rebuilding of Longwood Gardens’ 85-year-old wonder of fountain design, mid-point through the renovation.
Partner Hany Hassan’s exceptional hand drawings – notably, his sketches of significant buildings and sites around the world – stand out as works of art in their own right. A selection of Hany’s drawings are on display at the District Architecture Center in Washington, DC, through May 7th. We hope you will have the opportunity to stop in and see the exhibition.
“Treasures of New York: Cooper Hewitt” takes viewers behind-the-scenes of the stunning transformation of the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum, America’s only museum dedicated entirely to historic and contemporary design, and examines the new, high tech upgrades that will engage visitors to the museum like never before.
Associate Partner Frank Prial Jr. speaks at the Cooper Union Rose Auditorium on October 16th, about the challenges, discoveries, and staying true to the original Art Deco designs while modernizing the Empire State Building. Watch this video from the Art Deco Society of New York’s lecture series.
Richard Southwick was interviewed by News 12 New Jersey’s Kurt Siegelin on the history of Newark Liberty International Airport. From 1999 to 2002, BBB oversaw the adaptive reuse of the airport’s Art Deco Building 1, helping to save the historic structure from demolition.
As part of an ongoing lecture series at Longwood Gardens, BBB Project Manager Larry Gutterman spoke on November 5th about the firm’s work rehabilitating the Main Fountain Garden.
The restored TWA Flight Center at JFK International Airport, Eero Saarinen’s icon of modern architecture, has been recognized with an inaugural Excelsior Award for Public Architecture from the AIA New York State. The comprehensive rehabilitation project, commissioned by the Port Authority of New York & New Jersey and designed by Beyer Blinder Belle, has returned the landmark to its finely-detailed glory and prepared it for adaptive reuse as a hotel, restaurant and meeting center complex.
The Enoch Pratt Free Library today celebrated groundbreaking on the renovation and restoration of the Central Library in a ceremony presided upon by Carla D. Hayden, the Library’s Chief Executive Offer, Maryland Lt. Governor Boyd Rutherford, and Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings Blake.
Docomomo US today announced ten winners of the 2016 Modernism in America Awards program, stating that winning projects “are exemplary of the efforts going on all over the country as the awareness of the importance to advocate, restore and celebrate the architecture, landscapes and typologies of postwar society in the United States continues to expand.” We are honored that the jury awarded a Citation of Merit for the restoration of The Met Breuer.
President Barack Obama paid a visit to St. Paul’s Union Depot, announcing $600 million in transportation funding via the Department of Transportation’s TIGER program (Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery).
At Longwood Gardens, a unique open-air exhibit overlooking the Main Fountain Garden explores the history and vision behind “New Heights: The Fountain Revitalization Project.”
Each spring, Open House New York hosts a benefit in a building under construction. The event was held on Wednesday May 7th, 2014, inside 837 Washington Street, Morris Adjmi’s thoroughly contemporary twist on the industrial aesthetic of the Meatpacking District.
Essex Crossing is a new mixed-use, multi-income development for Manhattan’s largest stretch of undeveloped land below 96th Street, a vast tract known as the Seward Park Urban Renewal Area.
“Growing Canopies”, a graduate school project by BBB’s Scott Archer, was selected for the 2016 AIA Emerging Professionals Exhibit, under this year’s theme “It takes a community”.
Flora Bar and Flora Coffee are a new restaurant and café set on the lower level of The Met Breuer. Taking cues from the iconic building’s attributes of robust concrete, bluestone and bronze detailing, BBB’s design for the space respects Marcel Breuer’s modernist aesthetic while also incorporating the contemporary vision of restauranteur Thomas Carter and chef Ignacio Mattos. The completion of Flora Bar and Flora Coffee is part of BBB’s larger revitalization of Breuer’s mid-century masterpiece, restoring, redesigning and transforming it into The Met Breuer. Below is a selection of press coverage:
Prominently located on the Charles River, Building E52 at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology has reopened following a comprehensive renovation and rooftop addition. The recharged historic 1930’s building houses MIT’s Department of Economics, administrative suites for the Sloan School of Management, and an Institute conference center in the former home of the Faculty Club.
Back in November, Beyer Blinder Belle’s Gimme SHElter team participated in Habitat for Humanity’s Women Build 2015. This event helped to raise awareness for affordable housing for families headed by single mothers in NYC. With the support of our generous donors, including BBB, the team raised over $14,000 to the overall fundraising effort, which exceeded $310,000.
Georgetown BID Announces Gateways Project Design Partner Local firm Beyer Blinder Belle will lead the planning for enhancement of entry points into Georgetown, an initiative that emerged from the Georgetown 2028 15-year action plan.
The Frick Collection has announced the selection of BBB to serve as Executive Architect for the upgrade and expansion of the institution’s facilities, working with Design Architect Selldorf Architects. Below is an excerpt of the Frick’s press release.
Architect Kett Murphy was recently in Havana, Cuba to present at the VIII Latin American Colloquium on the Industrial Heritage, held on March 14 - 16 and organized by The International Committee for the Conservation of the Industrial Heritage (TICCIH) and the National Council for Cultural Heritage of the Ministry of Culture of Cuba.
Extell Development Company has announced the launch of sales at 70 Charlton, a new ground-up residential building located on a through-block site in the heart of the emerging Hudson Square neighborhood. The project is designed by Beyer Blinder Belle in collaboration with interiors firm workshop/APD.
Each year the Preservation League of New York presents its most prestigious commendation, The Pillar of New York Award, to those who have demonstrated a keen understanding of the value of New York’s historic resources by taking extraordinary actions to protect, preserve, and promote those assets.
Managing Partner Fred Bland explores his love of gardens in a five-part series entitled “Making of a Garden(er): An Urbanist Architect in the Garden.” This Installment 4 documents a year-long journey through photos of Fred’s garden. The series begins with Fred’s early gardening experiences, tracing the roots of his childhood experiences, initial projects, and the foundations of his first garden, Installment 1: “A Gardener Grows…”. Other installments include: Installment 2: “Influences”, Installment 3: “A Garden Grows…”, and Installment 5: “One View Four Seasons” [forthcoming].
“It is truly exciting to help shape the transformation of yet another DC neighborhood. For the Adams Morgan Vision Framework project, we are fortunate to be able to build upon our work on the citywide DC Vision Plan and Anacostia Waterfront Initiative of a decade ago.” —Kevin Storm, AIA, AICP, LEED AP
Earlier this summer, Jessica Anderson, Yolanda Grate, and I – in collaboration with The JBG Companies and Clark Construction – hosted a site tour and career presentation for girls ages 11 to 15 at Central Place, a mixed-use, high-rise community BBB designed and which is currently under construction in Rosslyn, Virginia. The event was part of a 3-day program organized by Girls Inc., a multi-national non-profit organization that provides girls across the US and Canada with life-changing experiences that empower them to succeed.
Austin Harrison is an energetic five-year-old boy from Fallston, Maryland who loves Star Wars, super heroes, and playing outside. When he was diagnosed with Stage 4 Neuroblastoma in 2014, his family reached out to the Make-A-Wish Foundation to give him something positive to focus on as he underwent treatment. Though his backyard has no trees, Austin wished for a treehouse.
In November, BBB DC’s Gretchen Pfaehler, Cristina Radu and Katie Hummelt attended the annual conference of the Association for Preservation Technology, hosted this year in Kansas City, Missouri. It was an intensive few days in the “Paris of the Plains,” the name given to the city in the 1930s during the heyday of jazz, gambling, corruption and wealth.
With a rich history, steeped in a town of historical significance all its own, the revitalization of the Bulova Watchcase Factory in Sag Harbor creates a new condominium complex that reflects the diverse styles of the surrounding village. The New York Times takes a look inside the new development restored by Beyer Blinder Belle with interiors by Steven Gambrel.
A recent article in the New York Times takes a look at the conversion and combination of six, 5-story rowhouses and two townhouses into one building to create luxury living spaces.
Beyer Blinder Belle has been working with Amherst College on the development of a campus-wide framework plan initiated in 2013. The all-encompassing campus plan is designed to serve as a flexible, living document that can adapt to evolving priorities and ongoing projects while abiding by strong and clear principles.
The distinctive gilded pyramidal roof of the Thurgood Marshall US Courthouse shines with new luster these days. Following a comprehensive interior and exterior renovation and restoration, the architectural landmark and preeminent symbol of the Federal Government (site of the famous Alger Hiss and Rosenberg trials) has been revitalized for life in the 21st century and beyond.
Under the direction of Beyer Blinder Belle, New York City Hall has undergone the first comprehensive renovation in its 200-year lifetime, preparing it for another century of use as the city’s administrative hub. While the landmark looks much as it did originally, the building has been fortified with critical system updates that make it safer and more comfortable for its users.
The Municipal Art Society of New York has selected the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum as the winner of the 2015 MASterworks Award for “Best Restoration.” Presented annually since 1988, the MASterworks Awards recognize projects for excellence in architecture and urban design and which make a significant contribution to New York City’s built environment. The restoration category encompasses restoration or adaptive reuse of a historically significant building.
“The Union Station Redevelopment Corporation (USRC), together with its partners Amtrak and Akridge, have commissioned Beyer Blinder Belle Architects & Planners LLP and Grimshaw Architects (BBB/Grimshaw) to create the Master Development Plan for Union Station’s 2nd Century.
An article in the LA Times tells the stories of some of the two million immigrants who left Antwerp’s Red Star Terminal for the US from 1878 to 1934. Beyer Blinder Belle designed the recently-opened Red Star Line Museum, which restores, reuses - and provides a contemporary addition to - the Red Star’s humble historic buildings, transforming them into a contemporary museum while maintaining the character of the original structures.
“Space of Her Own set the framework for one of the most fulfilling experiences of my life.” —Alanna Stewart, Associate AIA
Adas Israel, Washington DC’s oldest synagogue, owned by the Jewish Historical Society of Greater Washington, was moved 40 feet to be out of the way of adjacent construction and in anticipation of a second move down the street 24-30 months from now. The relocation of this historic structure is in conjunction with Capitol Crossing, a 2.2-million-SF, three-city-block commercial and residential development on platforms that bridge Interstate 395, designed to reconnect the city.
New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today presided over a groundbreaking ceremony for the TWA Hotel, a new $265-million hotel, restaurant and conference center complex that will be anchored by Eero Saarinen’s iconic Flight Center at JFK International Airport.
BBB’s contemporary interventions to mid-century architecture take inspiration from their modernist predecessors but are distinctly of their time, incorporating sophisticated materials, detailing, and amenities. Featured here are the recently-opened Flora Bar and Flora Coffee — a restaurant and café located within Marcel Breuer’s New York icon, now The Met Breuer museum — and The Hepburn, a bold new residential building inspired by the adjacent historic Washington Hilton.
“As architects, we advance our mission through projects that contribute to our communities, our cities and beyond. In today’s world, there couldn’t be a more meaningful project than helping to create the US Diplomacy Center.” – Partner Hany Hassan
Managing Partner Fred Bland explores his love of gardens in a five-part series entitled “Making of a Garden(er): An Urbanist Architect in the Garden.” This Installment 3 illustrates the evolution of his garden over 30 years. The series begins with Fred’s early gardening experiences, tracing the roots of his childhood experiences, initial projects, and the foundations of his first garden, Installment 1: “A Gardener Grows…”. Other installments include: Installment 2: “Influences”, Installment 4: “A Walk in the Garden”, and “One View Four Seasons” [Installment 5 forthcoming].
Antwerp’s Red Star Line Museum received a Special Commendation from the 2015 European Museum of the Year Awards (EMYA). Sponsored by the European Museum Forum, the awards were announced on May 16 at a ceremony held at the Riverside Museum in Glasgow, Scotland. More than 200 people from 29 European countries attended the gala ceremony in celebration of the honorees.
This past weekend, Gimme SHElter, an all-women team of volunteers from BBB, participated in Habitat for Humanity’s Women Build 2015. The event is part of a national effort to raise awareness of affordable housing for families headed by single mothers in NYC, who account for over 70% of Habitat’s homeowners.
During the week of September 7th, Miriam Kelly attended the sixteenth international congress of the International Committee for the Conservation of the Industrial Heritage (TICCIH) in Lille, France. TICCIH is the world organization for industrial heritage, promoting international cooperation toward the preservation and interpretation of industrial heritage as a cultural resource.
For two days each October, the annual Open House New York (OHNY) Weekend unlocks the doors of New York’s most important buildings and sites, offering an extraordinary opportunity to experience the city and meet the people who design, build, and preserve New York.
David W. Dunlap, the New York Times’ veteran Metro Reporter, considers the past, present and future of the landmark-designated Gould Memorial Hall at Bronx Community College. Widely regarded as architect Stanford White’s crowning achievement, the building is in critical need of repair and preservation. BBB is completing exterior restoration work on the Library, the first of many needed renovation projects at the building, including repairs to the dome’s cupola which features exterior copper shingles and Guastavino tiles.
On April 2, BBB’s New York office hosted award-winning writer Witold Rybczynski in a panel discussion of his recent book, How Architecture Works: A Humanist’s Toolkit. As significant as Witold Rybczynski’s visit were the conversations that members of the BBB community had in the studio about the book, and in the days leading to and following the event many interesting ideas came to the fore. Here are some of the great questions posed that the panel did not have time to address. They are valuable as open-ended subjects for reflection.
The TWA Terminal at JFK International Airport has been honored with a prestigious American Architecture Award, bestowed by the Chicago Athenaeum in recognition of excellence in architecture and urbanism in the United States.
The General Society of Mechanics & Tradesmen of the City of New York was founded in 1785. For more than 200 years, the General Society has selected four New York architects to highlight iconic buildings and landmarks of social, historical and cultural significance at their Labor, Literature and Landmarks Lecture Series. The Lecture Series pays tribute to the art of craftsmanship by featuring master artisans who lecture about the intricacies of their specialized crafts. The lectures are held in the General Society’s Library, founded in 1820, the second oldest library in New York City and one of three remaining private membership circulating libraries.
“John Belle changed the way American architects view the preservation and reclamation of our historic resources and, thus, provided the country, the city of New York, and Beyer Blinder Belle with an undying legacy.” — Frederick Bland, Managing Partner
In the fifty projects depicted here, BBB celebrates the opportunities we have had as stewards of historic buildings and sites on some of the more than 90,000 places listed on the National Register of Historic Places. We look forward to the future of preservation that continues to face the challenges of a growing and diversifying nation.
If you’ve read Robert Caro’s seminal book on Robert Moses, The Power Broker, you may recall the story of the controversy regarding the Manhattantown urban renewal project on the Upper West Side. While the project ultimately was built in the late 1950s, public scrutiny forced a new conversation about urban renewal efforts.
Beyer Blinder Belle is honored to be collaborating with David Rubin LAND COLLECTIVE on a Master Plan for the Indianapolis Museum of Art. The plan is aimed at enhancing the guest experience and celebrating the institution’s unique history while creating a sustainable, 21st-century campus.
An article in Real Estate Weekly looks at BBB’s master plan and expansion for Xavier High School in New York. The new 6-story Fernandez-Duminuco Hall is designed to directly support the institution’s guiding pedagogical goals while meeting the growing requirements of the school and its students.
The Lucy G. Moses Preservation Awards are bestowed annually by the New York Landmarks Conservancy in recognition of the owners and stewards of historic buildings across the City, who completed extraordinary restoration and reuse projects. Preservation Awards are given to projects that demonstrate excellence in the restoration, preservation, or adaptive use of historic buildings, streetscapes, and landscapes that preserve commercial, residential, institutional, religious, and public buildings.
On May 27, 2016 the Ellis Island Immigration Museum will debut a traveling exhibition from its European Counterpart in Antwerp, Belgium, the Red Star Line Museum. “Via Antwerp: The Road to Ellis Island” chronicles the timeless story of European emigration with powerful testimonies, artifacts, and artwork. The show is being mounted in conjunction with the 100th anniversary of the US National Park Service, which protects and supports Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty.
“That kind of grandeur does not happen anymore, so the fact that [New York City Hall] came back to this original form is remarkable. Considerable talent is needed as an architect and preservationist to make it look like nothing has been done to it.”—Jury
Washington Post Architecture Critic Philip Kennicott explores the past and future public face of the State Department with a look at Beyer Blinder Belle’s design for the new U.S. Diplomacy Center, currently in construction.
Among the eleven Modernism in America Awards announced today by Docomomo US, the restored TWA Flight Center at JFK International Airport is the recipient of the 2015 Commercial Design Award of Excellence and one of three Saarinen buildings selected for an award.
In his New York Times article, writer David Dunlap considers how plans to redevelop the TWA Flight Center at JFK International Airport into a 505-room hotel will bring new life to the beloved landmark. BBB completed a comprehensive restoration of the terminal in 2012 and will design the new hotel with Lubrano Ciavarra Architects for a partnership that includes MCR, JetBlue and the Port Authority.
Gould Memorial Library was one of three sets of buildings visitors toured at Bronx Community College on Saturday October 17th during Open House New York (OHNY) weekend. BBB’s Charlie Kramer served as a guide during the OHNY tours. Designed in 1893 by McKim Mead & White, the landmarked library is considered architect Stanford White’s (1853-1906) crowning achievement.
In our fourth installment of “In Construction,” a new series that explores behind-the-scenes building technologies and methods, we take a look at 551 West 21st Street and three unique aspects of the project: Building Information Modeling (BIM) used to orchestrate the design-assist process, BIM used to establish a common digital “working point” system, and custom-designed precast concrete panels.
The New York Public Library today unveiled early designs for the renovation of its central circulating branch, with a rendering showing a completely renovated Mid-Manhattan Library that will serve and inspire all New Yorkers.
After 40 year’s idle, the historic 1901 Hahne & Company Department Store in downtown Newark has undergone a transformative renovation and will soon be home to a lively mix of residential, retail, commercial, and cultural tenants. Across Broad Street from Military Park – a green oasis in the downtown – and connecting directly with the Newark campuses of Rutgers and the New Jersey Institute of Technology, the redevelopment is poised to serve as a valuable asset to the community as well as a model for urban revitalization and creative place-making.
An article in the Harvard Gazette offers a sneak peak inside the newly designed swing space for Harvard’s House Renewal and an article in the Harvard Crimson interviewed student residents of Dunster House soon after they were introduced to their swing year housing. As part of the program, BBB designed spaces to create a home away from home for students during their swing year. The design includes interiors services including layouts, furniture, finishes, fixtures and fabrics, as well as artwork, graphics, and donor signage for new student bedrooms, classrooms, and common spaces including dining facilities, gyms, libraries, music rooms, and multi-function spaces.
BBB has an ongoing relationship with the James Marston Fitch Charitable Foundation. As an architect, preservationist, and former Director of Historic Preservation at BBB, the contributions of the late Dr. Fitch to the fields of architecture, planning, and preservation provide inspiration to the Foundation’s Fellows. Today BBB continues to support Dr. Fitch’s mission, led by BBB’s Managing Partner and Chairman of the Fitch Foundation, Fred Bland.
Articles in the Harvard Gazette and Harvard Magazine take a look at Beyer Blinder Belle’s design for the renovation of Winthrop House, one of Harvard’s neo-Georgian undergraduate residential Houses, as part of the University’s House Renewal program.
As the result of a successful collaboration among architects and a large team of specialty consultants, the Gilded Age mansion and former home of Andrew Carnegie has been transformed into a modern museum facility worthy of the impressive collection of historic and contemporary design artifacts that it houses. Beyer Blinder Belle has been involved with the redesign of the Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum for a decade, from the initial planning process in 2004 through the project’s reopening in December 2014.
Managing Partner Frederick Bland was asked to present at the SCUP 2014 North Atlantic Symposium: “Building Excellence from the Ground Up: Stony Brook’s First 50 Years.” This symposium reflected on Stony Brook University’s rapid development into a leading public research university, examined several initiatives that transformed the Stony Brook campus, and the challenges and opportunities in maintaining a research university for the coming decades.
“It was thrilling to experience this first great milestone in the realization of a plan that will transform what has long felt like the back of the Princeton community and the University campus into a new front door – a gateway to the Princetons, a center for the arts, and a vibrant nexus of campus and community life. We are grateful to be a part of an incredibly dedicated team, to realize the University’s bold vision for a new neighborhood.” -Neil Kittredge, Partner
From October 17-20, nearly 40,000 people from 193 different countries gathered in Quito Ecuador at the Habitat III conference to discuss implementation of the New Urban Agenda (NUA).
“Go to Denmark” was contractor Steve Sann’s response when BBB approached Triton Construction about using Petersen Brick at The Hendrik, a new contemporary residential condominium in Boerum Hill, Brooklyn. Designed with craftsmanship as the guiding principle, The Hendrik draws upon the neighborhood’s industrial past as home to the labor force that built much of New York City.
As a follow up to her Cuba trip to present at the VIII Latin American Colloquium on the Industrial Heritage, architect Kett Murphy published the following conference report in The International Committee for the Conservation of the Industrial Heritage (TICCIH) quarterly bulletin.
To cap off BBB’s winter reading series, on April 5th Kyna Leski presented her concepts and book, The Storm of Creativity, which is an eloquent elaboration on the creative process. Kyna’s approach to creativity is non-linear and universal, applicable to all disciplines. She draws upon her observations as a designer, maker, and teacher to illustrate the ‘storm’ of creativity. I had the pleasure of listening to Kyna’s talk and having lunch with her earlier that day. Below are my reflections.
BBB was honored yesterday at the Historic House Trust of New York City’s 2015 Founders Award Dinner for our work on Staten Island. More than 300 guests attended the gala event, which celebrated historic homes on Staten Island and benefits the Trust’s ongoing preservation, education and restoration efforts for its collection of 23 historic houses in all five boroughs.
On Thursday August 13th, 2015, dignitaries from the US Department of State and the German Embassy gathered at the site of the new US Diplomacy Center for the unveiling of the museum’s first exhibition piece - a historic segment of the Berlin Wall. Members of the Beyer Blinder Belle team including Lead Designer Hany Hassan, FAIA, and architects Carl Chapman, Michael Fitzgerald, Rence W. Gill, Steven D. Lee, and Bodh N. Ramdeo were present as the three-ton 12 x 3 foot concrete panel was lifted by crane and placed inside the Diplomacy Center, which is currently under construction.
Architects specify natural materials such as stone, wood, gypsum and lime regularly in designing buildings. And the great cities are veritable museums for the granites, marbles, limestones and exotic stones that are quarried around the world. But the geologic processes that create these materials are not necessarily well known by a designer sitting at a desk in a studio. The best way to grasp the power of these events from the distant past may be to spend a week cycling in the vast and majestic wilds of a place like eastern Oregon.
When Penn Station opened in 1910, it was recognized as one of the most magnificent public spaces in New York City and in America. It was a classical masterpiece, inspired by the Baths of Carcalla, grandiose in scale, and rich in ornamental details including columns, coffers, pilasters, elaborate cornices, and beautiful carved statuary.
In our second installment of “In Construction,” a new series that explores behind-the-scenes building technologies and methods, we take a look at the Building E52 at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and three unique aspects of the project: adding a new conference room on top of the building, using mast climbers to clean the facade, and creating a parametrically modified wall panel system. Faculty have moved in this month, and classes will be held at the start of the spring semester.
BBB has developed a master plan for The Cordish Companies for a $200 million mixed-used district anchored by the Texas Rangers stadium, featuring dining, entertainment, a hotel and a convention facility in the heart of Arlington. Last week, Arlington City Council unanimously approved the major economic development project in a 9-0 vote. Cordish Companies and BBB have worked together for more than 15 years on mixed-used entertainment districts including Kansas City Live! in the Kansas City Power & Light District, the master plan for the Saint Louis Ballpark Village in conjunction with the St. Louis Cardinals, and on Pier IV also called Power Plant Live! in Baltimore. An article in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, which chronicles this milestone for Arlington’s sports-anchored mixed use development project, is featured below.
In our third installment of “In Construction,” a new series that explores behind-the-scenes building technologies and methods, we take a look at the Main Fountain Garden Restoration at Longwood Gardens and three unique aspects of the project: repairing 4,382 pieces of limestone, restoring the opulent horticulture, and installing state-of-the-art technology to enhance the visitor experience.
Detroit has become a symbol of post-industrial distress. Ruin voyeurs photograph scenes of overwhelming decay and the uncanny incursion of nature into spaces once dedicated to the manmade. But just as they overlook the underlying sadness of dereliction, so they ignore the vibrancy of an active city with a population working to translate loss into opportunity.
Amidst much press and anticipation of the completion of the rehabilitation of the Watchcase Factory into housing, Beyer Blinder Belle’s architectural historian Kate Lemos McHale reflects on the historic Village of Sag Harbor and her personal connections to the project.
Contemplating the 50th anniversary of the New York City Landmarks Law—which was being formulated when Penn Station was threatened with demolition and enacted only after it was lost—it is interesting to look at the ways in which preservation and design are intrinsically linked, and the importance of the narrative.
Throughout much of history, there was no distinction between architects, engineers, and builders. Instead, an individual—the master builder—conceived of the form and materials of a building at the outset and followed it through until construction came to an end, taking responsibility for all of the challenges that arose during the project. This kind of continuity throughout the life of a project is intuitively beneficial: engineering and construction requirements shape the approach long before ground is broken and design decisions need to be made until the final touches are in place. Many of the world’s great monuments, from the Parthenon to Brunelleschi’s Dome at the Florence Cathedral, were built in this way.
Architectural Musings: Hand and Word is a series of thoughts and sketches inspired by travel, design currents and other worldly observations. Installment #1 is an excerpt from BBB Managing Partner Fred Bland’s introductory remarks at the second annual Fitch Foundation symposium, “The Accidental Preservationist: Artists, Artisans, Outliers & the Future of Historic Preservation,” held on October 17, 2014 in New York City. Fred, who serves as the Chairman of the Fitch Foundation, shares his reflections on the evolution of the preservation movement.
BBB worked in close collaboration with the Metropolitan Museum of Art to restore Marcel Breuer’s mid-century masterpiece and transform it into a new home for The Met’s expanding contemporary and modern art program. Below is a selection of press coverage of the restored building:
The Following Function series explores projects in Europe and the US that pioneer the creative reuse of redundant industrial sites, and considers the implications for heritage conservation and post-industrial communities.
Cleary Larkin worked as an architect for BBB from June 2007 to May 2015. She is currently pursuing a PhD in Urban Planning at the University of Florida, where she intends to focus on the development of local preservation strategies within early 20th-century city planning. Here she considers how preservationists, designers and planners can better collaborate.
Managing Partner Fred Bland explores his love of gardens in a five-part series entitled “Making of a Garden(er): An Urbanist Architect in the Garden.” This Installment 2 is about the many influences contributing to his approach. The series begins with Fred’s early gardening experiences, tracing the roots of his childhood experiences, initial projects, and the foundations of his first garden, Installment 1: “A Gardener Grows…”. Other installments include: Installment 3: “A Garden Grows”, Installment 4: “A Walk in the Garden”, and “One View Four Seasons” [Installment 5 forthcoming].
Many people view a garden as nature incarnate. It is the opposite: a garden is an artifact created by humans for human pleasure and edification. A garden is no more “natural” than a building is, even though it uses natural plant material to create its story just as a building uses bricks, steel, and glass to explain itself.
Adding to an existing building, compared with ground-up new construction, isn’t always so glamorous.
“To walk through Grand Central Station every day and know my associates restored it, and I helped contribute to their culture, gives me great joy.”
“Our partners are equally stewards of the built environment and of this firm. Every decision is considered holistically – how it affects our practice, our staff, and our business. BBB’s sound financial health allows the firm to continue doing the work for which we are recognized and respected.”
“Respecting the past doesn’t mean admiring it to the point of replication. My goal is to transform historic buildings for modern and relevant use while maintaining the essence of their original character.”
Jill Cavanaugh is a seasoned Architect and Planner with a commitment to preserving and enhancing urban environments.
Kevin Storm has been a core member of BBB’s urban design team since 2000 and is the Lead Planner in our Washington DC office.
Maxwell Pau is a Senior Architect and Urban Designer with special expertise in the design of mixed-use and residential projects in urban centers through contemporary and thoughtful architecture.
Gretchen Pfaehler is a Senior Preservation Architect in BBB’s Washington DC office with more than 20 years of experience in the preservation, restoration, and renovation of historic buildings and landscapes for clients including the US Department of State, Architect of the Capitol, National Gallery of Art, Smithsonian Institution, US General Services Administration, and the National Park Service.
Orest Krawciw is a technical expert and seasoned Project Manager, Architect, and Construction Administrator.
Frank Prial has led and contributed to many of the firm’s most celebrated historic preservation and revitalization projects, most notably Grand Central Terminal for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority and the Empire State Building lobby for Empire State Realty Trust.
“Architecture and interiors are integral, you can’t separate them. My mission is to take the spirit of the design concept all the way through, to the last detail, so that there is great consistency and integrity in the project.”
“As architects and planners, we are always learning – you can’t really push the limits on something until you fully understand it. We get to the essence of what people do and then shape our work around it.”
“To achieve good design you need to know how to build. Growing up in the world of construction and development, I was able to see firsthand how architecture benefits enormously from knowledge of construction and functionality.”
Stephen McHale is a Project Architect and Manager who pays meticulous attention to detail and navigates large-scale projects and complex technical issues with ease.
Aaron Lamport is a seasoned Project Manager with extensive experience in the management and execution of academic and institutional projects.
Christopher Cowan is a Project Manager and Architect with extensive experience guiding the renovation and design of institutional, commercial, and residential projects.
Peter Scaglione is an architect and planner with more than 25 years of experience on projects ranging from major cultural and civic centers to urban and waterfront developments involving residential, transportation and other uses.
Andrew Jacobs is a Senior Architect and Project Manager experienced in the rehabilitation and design of new buildings for residential, retail, and commercial clients.
“Architecture and planning are subsets of our larger goal: engaged urbanism. Whether working on a cultural landmark in need of conservation, a new building, a downtown, or a campus plan, we consider it our highest responsibility to serve the larger community, in both physical and social form.”
“Planning, restoration and the design of new buildings in historic settings are the fundamental underpinnings of our firm. With every project, whatever its focus, I’m always thinking of all three.”
Carolyn Straub is an accomplished Project Architect and Manager with a specialty in the design and planning of cultural spaces.
Michael Wetstone has provided architectural and design leadership on some of the firm’s most celebrated civic commissions.
Beyer Blinder Belle was founded in 1968, in the wake of the urban renewal movement in the United States, when the social fabric of cities, communities, and buildings was compromised by the prevailing attitudes about planning and architecture. We pioneered and defined a different approach to the design of the built environment that focused on architecture empowering people — their interaction with each other on streets and in neighborhoods, their pleasure in moving through the city, and their connections to the surrounding physical fabric.
In 1968 John H. Beyer, Richard Blinder and John Belle met in New York as young practicing architects and founded an architecture and planning firm with a decidedly social mission.
“Our most vibrant cities are complex and multi-faceted, equal parts preservation and new design. Thoughtfully combined, and well planned, these are the building blocks for reinvigorating urban communities.”
“I have always been attracted to the vibrancy and excitement of cities and have focused my career on making them more livable. This work naturally extended to include campuses - microcosms of larger communities and cities - which help shape individuals’ aspirations and our society’s future.”
“Our work has become increasingly multifaceted and nuanced, encompassing a diverse array of rehabilitation, restoration and reconstruction projects that demand ever more creative and innovative design approaches, technologies and methodologies.”