Located along the Gowanus Canal, the former central power station of the Brooklyn Rapid Transit Company is a brick masonry and steel structure known as the Historic Turbine Hall. It was built around 1904 but has since fallen into disrepair. In the years since it was left vacant since the 1970s, the building has been heavily graffitied and informally referred to as the Gowanus Batcave.
Current redevelopment plans entail transforming the building into Powerhouse Arts, a modern fabrication, production, and exhibition campus for use by artists across disciplines and for community education, training, and engagement.
Three main volumes will be structurally integrated into a single building. Two of the volumes will be new six-story and three-story reinforced concrete buildings – the Boilerhouse and New Turbine Hall, respectively. Historic Turbine Hall will be completely repaired and stabilized while keeping the original red brick facade. The New Turbine Hall will be constructed within the historic structure. The complex will house a large multipurpose events space and include subgrade parking.