Edges, gaps, voids, and interstices; polluted and forgotten manufacturing zones; abandoned districts lining waterfronts and rail lines: decaying former industrial sites pose enormous challenges. But crumbling industrial artifacts offer unprecedented opportunity for innovative design and re-invention of cities in the 21st century.
A forgotten product of the post-industrial environment and rapid technological change, abandoned industrial structures are increasingly explored as history worth preserving and sites worth reinventing. Scattered across our city’s edges, ruined manufacturing sites now offer our greatest opportunities for innovative public spaces, equitable housing, resiliency against climate change, and radical contemporary design.
This lecture will investigate innovative projects by Manhattan based STUDIO V Architecture that are reinventing these sites and transforming our cities. It will explore Maker Park, a contemporary park in abandoned oil tanks on the Brooklyn Waterfront; Empire Stores, a Civil War-era coffee warehouse transformed into a museum, startups, and rooftop public park; and for the first time show their new designs for Silo City, the transformation of the iconic and ruined Grain Elevators in Buffalo into a cultural and arts center. These projects portray how the ruins of our industrial past can be preserved to benefit communities and transform our cities.
Jay Valgora’s Manhattan based practice, STUDIO V Architecture, is dedicated to the reinvention of the contemporary city. The Studio addresses multiple themes in its designs including creating a new architecture of transformative edges and sustainable communities, radical adaptive reuse, and experiments in innovative structures and fabrication.
STUDIO V has designed an extraordinary range of work advancing these issues. The Studio’s work encompasses reimagining New York City’s waterfront in all five boroughs including Astoria, Inwood, Flushing, DUMBO, Gravesend, Sunset Park, and Staten Island. Innovative designs for the Empire Stores and Bronx Post Office combine historic and contemporary architecture. The exploration of radical structures and fabrication includes Yonkers Raceway, MOBI pavilion, and Morimoto Asia.
Mr. Valgora has thirty years of experience in multiple disciplines including architecture, urban design, and industrial design. Mr. Valgora earned a Master of Architecture from Harvard, a Bachelor of Architecture from Cornell University and was a Fulbright Fellow to the United Kingdom where he began his studies of reinventing former industrial waterfronts.
Mr. Valgora’s work has received numerous awards including national, state, and local AIA awards, International Design Award, Architizer A+ Awards, Architectural Record Award, among many others. His work is featured in numerous publications including The New York Times, Fast Company, Architectural Record, Dwell, Wall St. Journal, New York Magazine, Crain’s New York, and Architect’s Newspaper. He is currently completing a book on the contemporary transformation of cities titled Last Utopia.