Brooklyn's Barclays Center


News: Barclays Center, a 19,000-seat indoor sports arena designed by SHoP Architects and AECOM, opens to the public in Brooklyn this weekend.

Barclays Center

The arena will provide the first Brooklyn home for basketball team The Brooklyn Nets and a venue for music concerts at the major intersection between Atlantic and Flatbush Avenues.

The completed building was delivered by design-and-build contractors The Hunt Construction Group, with a ribbon-like steel facade designed by New York studio SHoP Architects and a 19,000 seat arena planned by AECOM.

Frank Gehry was the first architect to work on the project, but developer Bruce Ratner dropped the original design in 2009 in favour of a cheaper alternative. Gehry's masterplan also included sixteen residential towers, which are still proposed but not yet constructed.

Barclays Center

Following the Barclays Center's inauguration on Friday, journalists have had mixed reactions to the scheme. In the New Yorker, critic Alexandra Lange describes the building as an "alien presence" that is "big, dark, and without scale," while New York Times reporter Liz Robbins writes that "the arena stands as an island, a reminder of what is missing."

Meanwhile, New York Magazine's Justin Davidson speaks favourably about the building, calling it "a great, tough-hided beast of a building" that is "juiced, genial, and aggressive all at once."

The Barclays Center will officially open on Friday with the first of eight sold-out concerts by rapper Jay-Z.

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Photography is by Bruce Damonte.

  • Greg

    The logo is extremely unfortunate.

  • Ken

    I had the pleasure of walking by Barclays this week. It’s really big, but the facade does a good job of breaking down the imposing mass of the building. It’s actually a very street/pedestrian-friendly building with nicely scaled overhangs and storefront glass – which is great because this area of Brooklyn is full of bad streetscape (Target and Staples and other big box stores at this intersection).

    The cantilevered oculus is stunning with the LCD screen wrapping the interior. It’s a really unique public space and an instant NYC tourist landmark, particularly as the “Brooklyn” brand continues to grow.

    Logos are typically unfortunate, but i guess someone’s got to put the money up to build these things!

  • The worst part of Barclays Center is Barclays: color, logotype, what the corporation represents, nothing blends with Brooklyn. ‘Nuff said.

    • lxd

      I have to disagree. I respect your opinion, but I see it differently. The Corten steel represents the bricks of Brooklyn buildings, in colour and warmth. The shape allows people to be a part of the place, be a part of the building, yes even a part of the team. Almost all the stadiums I know you will have to walk around the shape, here you can enter it. It’s exciting being ‘in’ I can imagine. I think the Brooklyn people can be very lucky to have that building.

  • Island life