Photos by Joe Thomas
The tallest office tower in Downtown Brooklyn officially opened its doors this week. Developed by JEMB Realty and designed by FXCollaborative, One Willoughby Square rises 34 stories and contains 500,000 square feet of office space. Abbreviated as 1WSQ, the tower is also the first new Class-A office building built in the area since the rezoning of Downtown Brooklyn in 2004.
Photo by Brian Berkowitz
“The opening of One Willoughby marks a huge turning point in our recovery,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said. “Over a year ago, as the City shut down to save lives, we could have only dreamed of celebrating the opening of a brand-new office tower.”
“One Willoughby shows how the City can successfully work in partnership with communities and the private sector to create jobs and further New York City’s recovery.”
Rendering courtesy of JEMB Realty
The office building features column-free floor plates, balconies on every other floor, and has a lobby with 30-foot ceilings and floor-to-ceiling glass. Tenant perks include a lounge, conferencing facilities, communal outdoor space, 250 bike parking spots, locker rooms, and showers.
Architect-anchor tenant FXCollaborative plans on moving 100 employees from Manhattan to 1WSQ this summer.
A public school with 300 seats will take up part of the first six floors of the development and have a dedicated entrance. Offices overlook the neighboring public park, Willoughby Square Park, a key element of the upzoning of Downtown Brooklyn put forth by Mayor Michael Bloomberg nearly 20 years ago.
Renderings by Hargreaves Jones, courtesy of NYCEDC
As 6sqft reported, previous designs called for the new park to be built on top of a high-tech parking facility. But after the developer failed to secure funding, the city abandoned the project. The EDC later announced the agency’s capital division would take on the work without a private partner and said it would also ditch the underground parking proposal.
Plans to rename Willoughby Square as Abolitionist Place Park first surfaced two years ago, following the co-naming of Willoughby Street as Abolitionist Place in 2007. The park sits next to 227 Duffield Street, home to abolitionists and believed to be a stop on the Underground Railroad.
After the Landmarks Preservation Commission designated the property as a landmark, the city purchased the site for $3.2 million. Following a long debate between city officials and local groups, the park was renamed Abolitionist Place last month, as Brooklyn Paper reported. Construction of the park will kick off this summer.
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Neighborhoods : downtown brookyln