Two Trees Management, best known for making modern-day DUMBO, has released its plan for the long-vacant Domino Sugar factory site on the Williamsburg waterfront. Two Trees acquired the site from previous developers Community Preservation Corporation and the Katan Group when their plan became mired in controversy over how much of the new residential development would be affordable. Dana Rubinstein summarizes the new plan:
The $1.5 billion plan calls for four new buildings and the redevelopment of the fifth, the original refinery building, which would house office space. The northermost building (the one farthest to the left in the rendering), would house both residential and commercial space. The third tower, and the project’s centerpiece, would house luxury apartments in a building that looks something like an untorqued version of Rem Koolhaas’ CCTV headquarters in China. There would be more apartments in the fourth and fifth buildings. The latter, the project’s tallest, would top off at about 60 stories.
Vishaan Chakrabarti, principal at ShoP Architects, calls the new plan a unique skyline for Brooklyn:
According to Jed Walentas, principal at Two Trees, the previously approved plan, designed by Rafael Viñoly Architects, would have added to the monotony of the Brooklyn Waterfront. While the old plan was primarily condominiums and big box retail, the new plan includes office space and neighborhood-scaled retail. ‘We want to create a real neighborhood,’ he said.
The architecture and open space plans from ShoP and Field Operations are compelling, but what’s most exciting about this new plan is that Two Trees has a track record of building vibrant, diverse neighborhoods and appears to want the same result for the Domino Sugar site.