Navy Yard

Navy Yard debuts first new commercial building in 10+ years

And the views are pretty great.

October 15, 2019 Lore Croghan
Dock 72 is the first de novo commercial development at the Brooklyn Navy Yard in more than a decade. Eagle photo by Lore Croghan

The Brooklyn Navy Yard debuted on Tuesday its first new-from-the-ground-up commercial development in more than a decade.

Dock 72, a 16-story office building, has quite the view: the World Trade Center, the Empire State Building, the Williamsburg Bridge and more.

Reporters got a bird’s-eye view of the North Brooklyn waterfront and plenty of iconic scenery during a tour on Tuesday, when the $400 million development celebrated its official opening with popping champagne corks and a drum corps performance.

The Navy Yard’s historic buildings and dry docks were visible down below the terrace, which wraps around a conference center that can accommodate 250 people. A bit further away, recently built Downtown Brooklyn high-rises stood tall.

Dock 72’s got quite a view of historic Brooklyn Navy Yard buildings down below and the World Trade Center on the horizon. Eagle photo by Lore Croghan
Dock 72’s got quite a view of historic Brooklyn Navy Yard buildings down below and the World Trade Center on the horizon. Eagle photo by Lore Croghan

The location is a unique site for an office building — it’s surrounded by water on three sides, John Powers of Boston Properties said during the opening ceremony. His company and Rudin Management are the project’s co-developers.

Their collaborator in the 675,000-square-foot Dock 72 development is none other than co-working space provider WeWork, which is currently seeking nearly $5 billion in financing from JPMorgan Chase after postponing an initial public offering.

“You may have heard we’ve been in the news lately, not all of it flattering, so it’s great to be among friends,” WeWork Co-CEO Sebastian Gunningham said during the ceremony. He did not stay afterward to speak to reporters.

You can see the Empire State Building and the Williamsburg Bridge from the top floor of Dock 72. Eagle photo by Lore Croghan
You can see the Empire State Building and the Williamsburg Bridge from the top floor of Dock 72. Eagle photo by Lore Croghan

The small businesses and individuals who are WeWork’s subtenants started moving into the company’s Dock 72 space at the beginning of the month. There are now 350 people there.

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WeWork is Dock 72’s only tenant at this point. The company rented 25 percent of the space in the building, Rudin Management head honcho Bill Rudin told reporters.

“We’re highly confident WeWork will figure out its short-term issues,” Rudin said.

Dock 72’s developers are in talks with prospective tenants in media, financial technology and advertising, he added. The building is expected to house more than 4,000 workers when it’s fully occupied.

The amenities include an as-yet unopened food hall in which high-profile restaurateur Danny Meyer will be involved. The building also has a health and wellness center and an outdoor basketball court.

From the top of Dock 72, you can see Downtown Brooklyn’s tall towers. Eagle photo by Lore Croghan
From the top of Dock 72, you can see Downtown Brooklyn’s tall towers. Eagle photo by Lore Croghan

Dock 72’s designers are S9 Architecture, Fogarty Finger and Perkins Eastman.

NYC Ferry launched service to the Brooklyn Navy Yard in May; the boats land right outside Dock 72. The route includes stops in Astoria and on Manhattan’s East 34th Street and Wall Street. 

The 300-acre Brooklyn Navy Yard was a storied shipbuilding facility that President John Adams established in 1801. During World War II, about 70,000 people worked on the premises. The U.S. government closed it in 1966 and sold the site to the City of New York.

In its current incarnation, the Brooklyn Navy Yard is a hub for manufacturers, artisans and tech businesses. The facility is operated by the nonprofit Brooklyn Navy Yard Development Corp.

Small businesses and individuals have started moving into WeWork’s space at Dock 72 in the Brooklyn Navy Yard. Eagle photo by Lore Croghan
Small businesses and individuals have started moving into WeWork’s space at Dock 72 in the Brooklyn Navy Yard. Eagle photo by Lore Croghan

The complex reached a milestone recently when the number of people employed there hit 10,000, Navy Yard Development Corp. President and CEO David Ehrenberg said during Tuesday’s opening ceremony.

Follow reporter Lore Croghan on Twitter.

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