Construction has begun on a mixed-use artists’ work space designed by Gene Kaufman Architect at 100 Bogart Street in East Williamsburg/Bushwick. With its industrial look and feel, the building fits easily into the neighborhood while offering the 21st-century materials, technology and amenities artists need. The project, developed by Vlat LLC, responds to the ongoing demand from the borough’s creative class for additional studio, gallery and work space.
Set back from the lot perimeter to maximize interior light, the six-story, 56,000-square-foot development will include 8,000 square feet of ground-floor retail and a six-story-plus cellar.
The layout calls for 50 to 60 studios, although Vlat expects the work patterns and resourcefulness of the artistic community to result in two to three times that number of artists and artisans working in the building. Toward that end the interior has been designed to allow for maximum flexibility and utility, with heavy floor loads, extra-large elevator bays, and strategically placed stairs.
IBK Construction Group LLC, which is known for its expertise in concrete construction, will create the exposed-concrete exterior walls that Kaufman has designed. The material, with its unfinished, gritty nature, will lend the building a timelessness and industrial character that reflects the surrounding area while hinting at the raw, creative spirit of the artists and artisans working within.
Said Kaufman: “This project reverses the all-too-familiar cycle of artists’ rescuing a neighborhood only to be pushed out, victims of their own success. By making the creative community an integral part of the long-term plan for the area and recognizing their value as a built-in economic generator, projects like this are changing the nature of urban transformation in New York City.”