Dezeen Magazine

Foster + Partners' first Brooklyn project is a waterfront office development

UK studio Foster + Partners has unveiled the design for its first project in Brooklyn: a development of offices and creative workspaces on the Red Hook waterfront.

Norman Foster's firm was announced as the architect for the 7.7-acre (3.1-hectare) property by New York-based developer Thor Equities yesterday.

The site is located in a largely industrial area of Brooklyn's Red Hook neighbourhood – close to a large Ikea store – and is surrounded by water on three sides.

"The design for this project takes advantage of its unique location in Red Hook, contributing to the wider regeneration of the area with new creative workspaces within a vibrant public realm," said Nigel Dancey, senior executive partner at Foster + Partners.

An initial visualisation of the scheme shows two four-storey buildings sat side by side, separated by a courtyard.

The timber-framed upper levels containing the offices will project over glazed retail and restaurant units on the ground floor.

The structures will be surrounded by an esplanade designed by landscape architects SCAPE, and feature roof gardens for occupants to use.

"The design pulls its natural surroundings into the site with a promenade, roof terraces and a green courtyard bisecting two low-rise building blocks," said Dancey.

Along with neighbouring Gowanus, Red Hook is currently undergoing rapid urban regeneration. Industrial buildings are being transformed into artist studios and creative workspaces as rents in other parts of the city continue to rise.

The open floor plates of Foster's buildings are designed for tenants in the technology, advertising, media and information industries.

"The design references the area's industrial heritage, respecting the scale of the neighbourhood, while creating flexible, innovative workspaces that will support new collaborative ways of work," Dancey said.

Despite never yet building in Brooklyn, Foster + Partners is working on a number of projects in Manhattan. These include the skinny One Hundred East Fifty Third Street residential skyscraper, and an office tower at 425 Park Avenue.

Last month, it was revealed that the firm was still in contention for the Two World Trade Center tower, despite being ousted for the job by BIG in 2015.