DEP Building Upgraded and Facade Maintained

350 Flushing Avenue, Brooklyn. Image Credit: NYC DEP

The Brooklyn building houses the Department of Environmental Protection water tunnel and shaft maintenance staff. The Department of Design and Construction, along with the Department of Environmental Protection, announced the completion of the refurbishment and upgrades to the historic Flushing Avenue building at 350 Flushing Avenue, Brooklyn. The $31.6 million project was funded by the Department of Environmental Protection while the Department of Design and Construction managed the construction of the project.

The refurbishment of the building included repairs to the masonry, roof, skylights, structural framework, concrete floors and ramps, and parapets and lintels. An all new heating, ventilation, and air conditioning system was also installed with new water, electrical, and gas heaters. The water, gas, and electrical lines were all replaced as well. The building now also has a new wet and dry fire alarm system and an automatic pre-action fire sprinkler system. These improvements all allow the facility to be fully up to code with modern safety standards for the foreseeable future.

Additional work was done to add a new woman’s locker room and bathroom, handicap ramps and lifts, improved steel staircases. The building’s current office space, garage, machine shop, and storage spaces also received lighting improvements.

The building was originally erected in 1904 as a commission by the Street Cleaning Department (an early version of the Department of Sanitation). The building occupies a full city block in south Williamsburg. The original construction by Warren and Wetmore included a blacksmith’s workshop, wheel-wright works, and 250 horse stalls. The building was eventually purchased by the Department of Water Supply, Gas, and Electricity in 1934 as their new headquarters. The Department then used $400,000 in funding to completely retrofit the building in 1936.

While the building is not a designated landmark, its landmark quality appearance and design were refurbished and improved to maintain and preserve the historic value of the building.

Department of Design and Construction Commissioner Jamie Torres-Springer stated, “This historic building, which houses a vital and under-appreciated water supply function, has been fully reinforced and waterproofed and is now ADA-accessible with upgraded lighting, environmental controls and fire alarm systems. We’re proud of this project, which was undertaken with great care to preserve the character of this 120-year-old structure.”

Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Vincent Sapienza stated, “Operating and maintaining the City’s vast water infrastructure requires DEP to be present in nearly every community across the five boroughs and we strive to integrate our facilities into the neighborhood, including this historic building in south Williamsburg. We thank our partners at DDC for managing the rehabilitation and for helping us to preserve the unique character of the building, and its role in the history of the neighborhood and City government.”

By: Patrick McNeill (Patrick is the CityLaw intern and a New York Law School student, Class of 2022.)


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