Work on the first buildings to rise at the Domino Sugar Refinery redevelopment is moving right along, with the first rental at 325 Kent Avenue due to welcome residents as soon as July. And with that milestone forthcoming, Two Trees, which is developing the Williamsburg megaproject, has released new details—along with a rendering—of one of its next buildings.
Designed by COOKFOX, the residential building at 260 Kent Avenue will be located at the corner of Grand Street and Kent Avenue, or the northernmost end of the Domino site. The huge mixed-use building will rise 42 stories and have 330 apartments; of those, “more than 20 percent” will be designated affordable, according to Two Trees. This brings the development closer to its goal of adding 2,800 new apartments to the Williamsburg waterfront.
The building will also have 150,000 square feet of office space—joining “The Refinery,” the enormous office complex that’s taking over the former Domino Sugar building—along with a large retail component in the building’s base. There will be an outdoor component with a sun deck that’s intended to encourage mingling between the residents and the office workers, according to COOKFOX principal Rick Cook, who spoke with the Wall Street Journal about the new building.
And like SHoP’s 325 Kent Avenue, the new COOKFOX building will have a distinctive design. The architecture was allegedly “inspired by the molecular pattern and forms of sugar crystals,” which translates to an all-white, precast concrete facade, shaped like two Ls stacked together. (325 Kent, meanwhile, is sort of like a square doughnut and a ziggurat smushed into one building—or, as former SHoP principal Vishaan Chakrabarti once called it, a “pomegranate.”)
The building will also have a connection to the new Domino Park, designed by James Corner Field Operations, which is expected to open sometime in 2018.
The design is in keeping with SHoP’s original masterplan for the site, which called for approximately 3 million square feet as part of the redeveloped Domino. Even though they sketched out the masterplan and are designing some of its buildings, the idea was always to bring in other architects, in order to avoid a bland, same-y sort of look. Mission accomplished.