Restoration of the Brooklyn Academy of Music

Project: Waterfront Warehouse Rehab, Episode 8, Part 3



Nick Tagios from Tagios Tile and Marble is on hand to perform the installation of marble tile. Tagios uses a dry mortar bed to level the floor before laying down the individual tiles.

In the kitchen, Gam Danziger from Craftline Cabinets is installing new cabinets and setting up the center island. Danziger demonstrates his technique for securing the island to the floor. A three-quarter-inch spacer and a two-by-four block are both involved.

Next, a trip to downtown Brooklyn takes Bob to the historic Brooklyn Academy of Music. The main building, which dates back to 1908, is in the midst of an enormous $8,000,000 renovation.
Part 1: Installing a Marble Tile Floor
Part 2: Cherry Cabinet Installation
Part 3: Restoration of the Brooklyn Academy of Music
Karen Brooks Hopkins, president of the Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM), gives Bob a peek at the restoration of the main building. BAM, which held its first performance in 1861, is the oldest performing arts center in country. After a fire in 1903, the center was moved from its original location to its current place in the fashionable neighborhood Fort Greene. Over the past thirty years, this area has gone through gentrification and the surrounding community has been revitalized. BAM is now the largest presenter of contemporary international dance, theatre, and opera in the United States. The entire weatherworn facade is being restored, including the terracotta cherubs and colorful cornices. The architectural firm managing the BAM renovation is Hardy Holzman Pfeiffer Associates. Hugh Hardy is leading the team, using modern technology and materials to renew the terracotta ornamentation's luster and to reconstruct the parapet and cornice (which was removed for safety reasons almost 50 years ago). Other work being performed includes replacement of cracked brickwork and lintels and part of the roof, refurbishment of stained-glass windows, cleaning of the facade, and the addition of an undulating, 130 foot-long glass entrance canopy.
Bob Vila heads to the DUMBO neighborhood of Brooklyn, NY, for this project involving an abandoned warehouse built in the mid-19th century. Bob's adaptive reuse will yield three ultra-hip apartments with commercial space at street level. Project manager is Bob's oldest son, Chris Vila, who helps guide this complete rehabilitation of a beat-up building in the city that never sleeps.

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