Navy Yard Manufacturer IceStone Uses Crowdsourcing to Recover from Sandy

We all know that glass is made of sand, but Hurricane Sandy was no friend to recycled glass countertop manufacturer IceStone.

The Brooklyn Navy Yard tenant was hit hard by the storm, with their manufacturing and warehouse floor submerged by almost four feet of water, causing damage to their facility and materials. The East River water that washed through the yard stained valuable slabs of finished countertop, contaminated high-grade raw materials, wreaked havoc with floor-level electrical systems, and disabled the conveying and fabrication machinery. In addition, the heart of the company’s marketing campaign – hundreds of beautiful sample pieces and 2000 purpose-built sample boxes and intricately designed binder displays – were completely destroyed.>> Continue reading

Merchant Marines, Unsung Heroes of World War II

While developing our new tour about the World War II history of the Brooklyn Navy Yard, we encountered a fascinating – and largely untold – history of the oft-forgotten service branch, the Merchant Marines. While the wartime exploits of the Army, Navy, Marines, and Army Air Corps are often celebrated, merchant seamen have received short shrift, both in the history books and in real life.

When we first offered the tour as a sneak preview for veterans and their families in early November, we were privileged to be joined by a veteran of the Merchant Marines who served in the Atlantic theater during the war, a gentleman by the name of Paul Mager. I do not use the word “veteran” lightly – while it may seem an obvious moniker to apply to someone who provided essential wartime service in the middle of a combat zone, that status had been denied to Mr. Mager and his compatriots for decades, so it holds particular meaning for them.>> Continue reading

Pouring Concrete: The Brooklyn Navy Yard Prepares for War

Times of war have always brought the biggest transformations to the Brooklyn Navy Yard, and none were bigger than those that took place during World War II. But long before the attack on Pearl Harbor plunged America into the global war, US military planners saw the need to expand the country’s navy in order to fight on two oceanic fronts. A larger navy required larger facilities not just to build ships, but to outfit, service, and repair them. In short, the navy needed more dry docks in more places around the world.>> Continue reading

Archtober at the Brooklyn Navy Yard

Presented by the Center for Architecture, Archtober is an annual festival of lectures, tours, exhibitions, and films that celebrate all things architecture in New York City. These special tours of the Brooklyn Navy Yard will focus on the Yard’s unique built environment, including the Architecture & Infrastructure TourUrban Ecology Tour, and a special series of Inside Industry Tours featuring technology hardware prototyping space New Lab.

Tour Programs

icon-gears  Inside New Lab // FRI, Oct 11, 9:30am 
icon-building  Building the New Yard // SAT, Oct 12, 2pm
icon-leaf  Urban Ecology Tour // SAT, Oct 26, 11am