Domino Sugar Refinery Redesign Approved by Landmarks Preservation Commission

Rendering by PAU

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In another surprising twist, Practice for Architecture and Urbanism and Two Trees’ unexpected new design for the adaptive reuse of the Domino Sugar Refinery was approved by the Landmarks Preservation Commission this morning with no changes, the developer confirmed.

It was the second time the proposal for the landmarked 1880s factory at 292 Kent Avenue went in front of the LPC.

brooklyn development domino sugar

Rendering by Practice for Architecture and Urbanism

During the first presentation of the proposal on October 31, multiple commissioners expressed concerns over what they saw as fundamental problems with the plan, including turning the building into a shell by removing its roof and interior and exposing it to the elements.

“You’re taking a building and unbuilding it, making it a ruin,” said commissioner Michael Goldblum. “Is it appropriate?”

At the time, Chair Meenakshi Srinivasan suggested the developers consider details of the following: the barrel-vaulted roof, such as what glass they will use, how the bricks of the building will be preserved, and the use of the ground floor.

brooklyn development domino sugar williamsburg

Rendering by Practice for Architecture and Urbanism

Often petitioners will tweak their plan to meet LPC objections, but that was not the case here. A presentation submitted to the commission in advance of today’s meeting says the brick is in good condition and will be cleaned. It cites a masonry study conducted in July 2015.

Two Trees, the project’s developer, previously sought approval from the LPC for the adaptive reuse of the landmarked 1882 building in 2014. At that time, they received a unanimous vote in support of a design by Beyer Blinder Belle Architects.

brooklyn development domino 292 kent avenue

Photo by Susan De Vries

Two Trees scrapped it at the beginning of October in favor of a new design by Vishaan Chakrabarti’s Practice for Architecture and Urbanism — reportedly because the developer was having trouble finding tenants.

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