St. Ann’s Warehouse

A Permanent Home for St. Ann’s Warehouse Under the Brooklyn Bridge

We were asked by St. Ann’s Warehouse, a leading nonprofit performing arts theater, to help them transform the shell of an old tobacco warehouse in Brooklyn Bridge Park into the organization’s first permanent home. After having supported St. Ann’s in its RFP submission to move to the historic site, the challenge became developing the vision for St. Ann’s at the Tobacco Warehouse, while also securing and fitting out a temporary space where the organization could continue its productions while the new building was being built.

Beginning with design team selection, our role encompassed all facets of managing the project up to and through opening night. The completed building now includes a flexible performance space, production support spaces, administrative offices, a community space capable of accommodating smaller productions and an outdoor garden that integrates into the overall landscaping of Brooklyn Bridge Park. The vision for the building was to be able to accommodate the wide-ranging avant garde performances that St. Ann’s Warehouse is historically known for and the flexibility of the design, conceived of by Marvel Architects and Charcoalblue, has enabled every production to uniquely customize the playing area for its performance.

Beyond leading and working with the complexities that came with realizing this space on this site, our team also navigated the complex capital stack of the project, which included funding from city and state sources. We worked hand-in-hand with St. Ann’s leadership and its development team to ensure all parties were mindful of critical fundraising goals to keep the project progressing without interruption. In the end, the project was delivered on time and within budget and St. Ann’s was able to successfully fundraise to realize all desired aspects of the project.

In addition to the capital project at the Tobacco Warehouse, DBI also worked with St. Ann’s to identify an interim site for the theater while planning and construction was ongoing. Upon the selection of the interim theater site, DBI negotiated the project lease, managed the planning process, hired and managed the design and construction team, and managed the theater construction.

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Emily Puhnaty, Director of Business Development & Communications