Building of the Day: 59 Third Avenue

The BOTD is a no-frills look at interesting structures of all types and from all neighborhoods. There will be old, new, important, forgotten, public, private, good and bad. Whatever strikes our fancy. We hope you enjoy.

Address: 59 Third Avenue, from Pacific to Dean Streets
Name: Former Brooklyn Printing Plant, New York Times
Neighborhood: Boerum Hill/Times Plaza
Year Built: 1929
Architectural Style: Neo-Classical, with Art Deco ornament
Architect: Albert Kahn
Landmarked: No

Built as the printing plant for the NY Times, this building has been repurposed as school space, and is part of a complex housing the Math and Science Exploratory School, Brooklyn High School of the Arts and the Kahlil Gilbran School.

The Arts HS is the only NYC public school to offer a program in historic preservation. The NY Times signage is still on the façade of this Classical temple. The large windows at street level along Third Ave allowed the public to watch the printing, collating and folding of the paper as it passed across the floor of the building.

boerum-hill-brooklyn-59-3rd-ave-history-02

This area is now a gymnasium, a sensible reuse of open space. Kahn’s use of Art Deco motifs and styling takes the building to another level, making it one of the most interesting buildings in the Times Plaza area.

The Times Plant, the Williamsburgh Savings Bank, and Hanson Place Methodist Church, along with the main school building alongside, on Dean St, form a wonderful pocket of Art Deco architecture in a mainly late 19th century streetscape.

Boerum Hill Brooklyn -- 59 3rd Ave History

Boerum Hill Brooklyn -- 59 3rd Ave History

Boerum Hill Brooklyn -- 59 3rd Ave History

[Photos by Suzanne Spellen]

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