As rumored, Brooklyn Bridge Park has issued a Request for Proposal [download PDF] ”for the rehabilitation and adaptive re-use of the former Tobacco Warehouse for cultural, educational or community purposes.”
The BBP lists the objectives of the RFP as:
- Creating a new high quality year-round facility in the park to house cultural, arts, educational and/or civic and community uses that would activate the park and provide public programming both at the site and throughout the park.
- Restoring the facility as an active community amenity that will provide access to the general public and be available for community use.
- Stabilizing and preserving the historic structure, to the extent possible.
- Integrating the Tobacco Warehouse with the operations and public facilities of the Park in a manner sensitive to its historic surroundings.
- Creating a financially self-sustaining model for the continued upkeep and maintenance of the facility without subsidy from Brooklyn Bridge Park for development, construction or ongoing operations.
A local consortium of community leaders calling itself the Brooklyn Bridge Park Community Council released its objectives for the Tobacco Warehouse on August 5, in anticipation of this RFP. In our coverage of that proposal we wrote:
Sources claim that DUMBO’s largest developer, Two Trees, has been floating a plan since Spring to convert the facility into a glass roofed, single use venue. They reportedly plan to house St. Ann’s Warehouse (soon to be displaced by their Dock Street project) and another arts group… [Some say that the] “fix is in” for the Two Trees’ scenario to move forward. The BBPCC insists that the process needs to be public and transparent to insure that the Tobacco Warehouse remains part of the park and doesn’t fall into private domain.
The BBPC has included in its presentation a statement for noted historian Francis Morrone:
Francis Morrone: A Historian’s Plea for the Preservatn of the Tobacco Warehouse Ruin