LMCC Arts Center at Governor’s Island
New York City
Award of Merit
Owner: Lower Manhattan Cultural Council
Lead Design Firm: Pei Cobb Freed & Partners LLP
General Contractor: Reidy Contracting Group LLC
Structural and MEP Engineer: Buro Happold Consulting Engineers PC
Architect: Adamson Associates
A former Governor’s Island military warehouse dating to 1870 underwent a renovation to create the new Lower Manhattan Culture Council Arts Center—a safe, comfortable and engaging studio and exhibition space where emerging artists can create and display their works in a dynamic gallery and studio space that also includes administrative offices. It is the first permanent home for the nonprofit community arts group.
The team, working with a pro bono design by Pei Cobb Freed & Partners, renovated the long, narrow two-story building into an open, loft-like space, restoring and exposing the original truss structure and turning munitions storage vaults into bright galleries and dance and art studios. The 40,000-sq-ft structure also houses a main gallery, reception area and café with views of Manhattan and New York Harbor.
The submitting team says it encountered unwelcome surprises, such as badly deteriorated exterior walls, as well as pleasant ones—notably a historic wood floor under a carpet that was turned into a rich accent for the new gallery.