In 2011, the Brooklyn Navy Yard’s Building 128 was a deserted, rotted-out, but beautiful iron skeleton of American’s manufacturing past.
Just a year later, Empire State New Market Corporation, Empowerment Reinvestment Fund (TruFund), and GS New Markets invested $25 million in NMTCs toward a $82.8 million project to renovate Building 128, a 215,000 sq. ft. facility for use as manufacturing space for a textile manufacturer space for multiple small businesses at below-market rents. This allocation helped promote local industrial economic development and employment in a FEMA designated disaster area where the poverty rate is greater than 25%.
Building 128 has become the home for New Lab, a hub for innovation and design firms in the realm of robotics, engineering, and nanotechnology. Over 350 employees for the companies who reside in the building, enjoy a full metal-and-wood shop, a 3-D printing lab, and digital manufacturing tools.
Businesses located at Building 128 including Cyre Precision, a designer and manufacturer of uniforms and body armor for U.S. military personnel, MacroSea, an architectural design firm, and Mast Brothers Chocolate which also received a small business loan from TruFund five years prior to its expansion at the yard and other support from Empire State.