May 11, 2005

What I Love Most About Greenpoint - The Terminal Warehouse/Market

POST #    1699

With the coming rezoning of Williamsburg and Greenpoint, a lot of the buildings along the East River will likely be torn down and replaced by huge apartment buildings. I have no major qualms with that. It's the way things go. People like to live on the water and it was only a matter of time until apartment buildings would make their way to North Brooklyn.

There are a couple of things I would like them to designate as landmarks on the waterfront - the Domino's Sugar Factory and the Greenpoint Terminal Warehouse/Market. The Terminal Market, as described by NYC's Greenpoint-Williamsburg Environmental Impact Study (Chapter 9, pg. 3):

The Greenpoint Terminal Market site occupies over three blocks of land along the East River between Greenpoint Avenue and Oak Street. This site, which is largely vacant, includes six industrial buildings ranging in height from one to seven stories, several of which are severely deteriorated. Immediately south of the Greenpoint Terminal Market is a now vacant piece of land formerly occupied by Consolidated Freight, a national freight forwarding company that declared bankruptcy in August 2002.

It might be severely deteriorated, but it's beautiful and it's historic. Continental Iron Works was located there, which is where the Monitor was built, which as everyone know played an important role in Civil War history. Put some minor-major repairs to the building, shore up the structure, and the Terminal Market could remain as is. The freight area that Consolidated Freight is suitable for an apartment complex and the warehouse could be made into a commercial space. I'm thinking something like Chelsea Market which would preserve the building and its character while developing the area.

To be a landmark, the NYC Landmark's Commission says, "to be designated, a potential landmark must be at least 30 years old and must possess 'a special character or special historical or aesthetic interest or value as part of the development, heritage, or cultural characteristics of the city, state, or nation.'" Hmm...I think Greenpoint Terminal Market has that heritage for the nation.

So if there's anyone that wants to work on this with me or is already working on this, I think the Monitor deserves more than a little plaque.

UPDATE: Much of the whole complex burned down on May 2, 2006 in a huge fire.

Posted by tien mao in NYC at 8:01 AM



Could you imagine a condo in there that spanned both buildings, where you could use that pedestrian bridge to go between the two?

Posted by: Adam [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 11, 2005 8:42 AM

actually, adam, that would be pretty cool. there's actually a 3rd building (not pictured) that is connected to the brick building with bridges as well.

Posted by: tien [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 11, 2005 9:06 AM

I was wondering what that building was...mystery solved!

Posted by: yp at May 11, 2005 9:35 AM

that's one of my favorite sections of greenpoint. i don't think i've ever wandered there on a weekday so i don't know how busy it is, but i used to love walking around out there on the weekends. it's quiet, and no one's around.

Posted by: jason at May 11, 2005 11:40 AM

this is one of the most fascinating buildings on the waterfront, for sure -- i really wish i see it from the inside. it's a pity that, despite the awesome-looking construction, they're likely to replace it with something a bit taller. from what i understand, the domino's factory is already slated for replacement. i'm in your camp on the rezoning, btw -- so it goes, maybe it will be a nice waterfront to bike around.

Posted by: david at May 11, 2005 12:34 PM

jason, i doubt it's busy on weekdays either.

david, there are some photos floating around of the insides of the building. it seems like it's worth exploring for those with updated tetanus shots.

Posted by: tien [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 11, 2005 1:47 PM

This is definitely one of the best buildings in the neighborhood, and it would make amazing lofts, but I'll bet anything they tear it down to build something waay bigger and waay less interesting. Greed knows no taste - not that I'm against the rezoning - just wish some of these landmarks could be preserved...

Posted by: liberal server at May 24, 2005 3:09 PM

Hey does anybody know who bought the buildings or how to get in touch? I have a great alternative to tearing it down and and using the current space space - one that would preserve the gorgeous building but still make the owners a bunch of money.....

Posted by: Kristen at June 9, 2005 8:08 PM

The Terminal market was sold last week for $141 million.

It will be torn down, and new construction will begin

immediately. Tenants i talked to yesterday are being asked to

leave at once.

Posted by: donnie at November 29, 2005 10:13 AM

Sorry...not trying to inundate you. I saw you on flickr as well. Just trying to get the word out about next Thursday. For people who are interested in photographing or meeting up and discussing the GTM, Please joing us May 11 for:


I'm organizing a photo social and candlelight vigil next Thursday, May 11 at the site of the smoldering remains of the Greenpoint Terminal Market. Bring your cameras, right?

Thursday, May 11, 2006
9:00 pm: Meet at the site.
10:00 pm: Drinks to follow at Greenpoint's coco66.

Anyone who ever spent a Saturday photographing the North Brooklyn waterfront is required to attend. Likewise, attendance is required for anyone who went out at one in the morning to photograph the smoke, chat up the police, and receive handouts from the Red Cross.

The purpose of this meeting is social, not political.


Please RSVP if you're interested by going to this photo and typing "RSVP" in the comments line. I'd like to have an idea of how many people are interested.

See Burn Down, Brooklyn for more details.

Posted by: Anne Marie at May 3, 2006 9:59 AM

With the gigantic fire that has destroyed the Old Greenpoint Terminal Market over the past couple of days, I am deeply saddened. I lived in Greenpoint for a few years, and jogged by this beautiful historic landmark of our city on a daily basis often pausing to admire it. I dreamed like others of the possibilities of this abundant space, just not as whomever must have set this fire (Hhhhmmmm...) instead I thought of it as a wonderful setting for a film, not as a future site of condominiums.

Posted by: Jessica Davis at May 3, 2006 10:58 AM

time to save what's left of the industrial treasures on the Williamsburg/Greenpoint waterfront. Help save the Domino Sugar comples before that too burns or is destroyed!! Development is one thing but there is room for the past as has been shown many times. Preservation makes an area more desirable. It looks like the rezoning of Williamsburg/Greenpoint and the attendant greed that it has sparked (pun intended) will go down as another tragic mistake. (Penn Station anyone?)

Posted by: jess i. cansee at May 6, 2006 12:17 PM

just found your pics after doing a search for gtm. wish i had passed by the market before the fire.

Posted by: theodoreruxpin at May 15, 2006 1:53 PM

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