Tuesday, February 1, 2011

When the Tobacco Warehouse Had a Roof

 What with all the fuss lately about what should be done with the iconic Tobacco Warehouse in DUMBO, we thought it'd be fun to see what the place looked like when it had a roof.

This 1936 photo by Bernice Abbott, above, shows the Tobacco Warehouse to the right -- much taller than it is today. The partially constructed building in the background is the Purchase Building, which was knocked down a couple of years ago. The Brooklyn Bridge soars overhead, just as it does today.

This photo can be seen and zoomed in on at the web site of the Museum of the City of New York.

The same scene in modern times, taken by Google. A green fence (now replaced with chain link) surrounds the area where the Purchase Building stood.

The Brooklyn Heights Association, the Fulton Ferry Landing Association, and the New York Landmarks Conservancy filed two lawsuits in mid-January to prevent the Tobacco Warehouse's removal from public parkland.

Documents they obtained through the Freedom of Information Law showed that City and State officials had removed the Tobacco Warehouse from the park’s map so that it could be developed by Saint Ann's Warehouse, a private arts organization.

Last Thursday, in a victory (at least temporarily) for the civic groups, the Department of Justice ordered the City of New York to treat the Tobacco Warehouse "as if it were again fully protected federal land." (See Brownstoner for more on this).

- Handing Over Tobacco Warehouse in DUMBO 'Insulting': Flemming
- RFP Issued for Tobacco Warehouse in DUMBO
- Tobacco Warehouse, Acute Corner, DUMBO

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You don't need to go back to 1936--the Tobacco Warehouse had a roof even in the 1990s (I don't have a picture, though).