A historic waterfront factory has been given a new lease on life thanks to New York-based architecture firm ODA and Triangle Assets. Located at 10 Jay Street in DUMBO, New York City, the project explores both adaptive reuse and historic preservation in its transformation of the former Arbuckle Brothers sugar refinery into creative office spaces. The sensitive renovation updates the building to modern standards while carefully preserving its history, from the restrained industrial-inspired material palette to a new reflective facade that evokes sugar crystals.

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boats floating by a brick building with shiny facade

Built in 1898, the massive structure first served as the Arbuckle Brothers’ sugar refinery. After the building was converted into a winery, the front structure of the building was torn down, leaving only three of the original facades intact. The building then remained vacant and abandoned for 50 years until real estate agency Triangle Assets purchased the property with aims of renovation.

building with brick facade on one side and shiny facade on another side

white room with wood beam ceiling

To that end, Triangle Assets tapped ODA to turn the 230,000-square-foot warehouse and its 10 stories into flexible offices that overlook panoramic views of Manhattan and Williamsburg’s waterfront. The interiors are also minimally dressed in exposed brick and steel in a nod to the site’s industrial heritage. Existing historical features, such as the terracotta arches and octagonal columns, were restored and exposed. The building is also embedded in Brooklyn Bridge Park, making it the only privately owned building in the park thanks to the owner’s donation of nearly 15,000 square feet of land to the park. The new crystalline west facade reflects the park and sunsets over the river.

Related: Brooklyn’s new Domino Park features relics from the old sugar factory

white room with white couch and blue chairs and motif of the Brooklyn bridge on the wall

large room with brick walls, brick columns and large windows

“As the conversation surrounding heritage and preservation grows, 10 Jay Street is a prime example of how cities around the world recover and readapt buildings,” a press release on the project said. “The design dared to challenge the way landmark buildings are seen and, in doing so, created unique threads to link old with new, the industrial age with the digital era, and create a product for the modern age.”


Photography by Pavel Bendov via ODA

mirrored and brick building on waterfront at dusk