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DDC Recognized by the NYC Public Design Commission for East Side Coastal Resiliency and Brownsville Library Renovation and Expansion

DDC: Ian Michaels, 646-939-6514,

(Long Island City, NY – June 10, 2021) The NYC Department of Design and Construction (DDC) received two awards today from the NYC Public Design Commission (PDC) as part of PDC’s 39th Annual Awards for Excellence in Design, one for its leading role in citywide coastal resiliency initiatives, particularly designing and building East Side Coastal Resiliency, and one for the renovation and expansion of the Brownsville Library in Brooklyn.

Rendering of East Side Coastal Resiliency Project

East Side Coastal Resiliency will upgrade public spaces such as East River Park while creating a continuous 2.4-mile flood protection barrier for 110,000 Lower East Side residents plus local businesses

“DDC delivers high-quality infrastructure and public buildings for New Yorkers across the City, and it’s gratifying to be recognized by the experts at the Public Design Commission for our work,” said DDC Commissioner Jamie Torres-Springer. “Our staff put these particular projects through a meticulous design process, including collaborating with some of the nation’s top design firms. These PDC awards as well as those DDC has won in the past reflect this collaboration and commitment to project excellence.”

East Side Coastal Resiliency (ESCR) is a $1.45 billion climate resiliency project that will provide flood protection and improve open spaces and waterfront access for more than 110,000 New Yorkers – including 28,000 public housing residents – on Manhattan’s East Side, from East 25th Street south to Montgomery Street, low-lying neighborhoods that were greatly affected by Hurricane Sandy in 2012.

ESCR will include an integrated 2.4-mile system of raised parkland, floodwalls, berms and movable floodgates to create a continuous line of protection against the growing threat of stronger, more severe coastal storms worsened by climate change as well as more frequent tidal flooding due to sea level rise. The project involves significant upgrades to public open spaces and amenities, including improved waterfront access through reconstructed bridges and entry points. It will also upgrade existing sewer systems to capture and manage precipitation during storms.

Construction on ESCR began in November 2020, and Mayor de Blasio announced the start of major construction activities in April 2021. The entire project with community improvements is anticipated to be completed in 2025, with flood protection arriving in 2023.

Rendering of Brownsville Library

The 1908 Brownsville Library will almost double in size and be fully restored inside and out.

DDC is managing the renovation and expansion of the Brownsville Library at 61 Glenmore Avenue for Brooklyn Public Library. The 1908 building was originally designed by architects Lord & Hewlett and is one of the original Brooklyn Carnegie libraries.

The project will add over 4,500 square feet of new space to the building, nearly doubling the amount of usable space for Brooklyn Public Library and the community. The exterior entrance and steps will be reconstructed and the main historic double-height reading room will be restored with a new teen-focused mezzanine space and lower level media-centered zone.

On the roof of the original building, a light-filled addition will provide a new community space with panoramic views to the neighborhood across a green roof. New and renovated interior spaces will emphasize flexibility and adaptability for programming needs and future program uses.

DDC’s consultants on the project are LTL Architects, Architectural Preservation Studio and Local Office Landscape + Urban Design.

In 2020, seven DDC projects were recognized by the Public Design Commission for excellence in design or for helping to bring the City “Toward a Sustainable NYC” by fulfilling the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and the goals of OneNYC 2050: Building a Strong and Fair City, including the addition to the Brooklyn Public Library’s Eastern Parkway Branch Library; the reconstruction of Queens Boulevard between Roosevelt Avenue and Union Turnpike under the City’s Vision Zero “Great Streets” program; the revitalization of Downtown Far Rockaway's streets and infrastructure in Queens; the new Staten Island 1 & 3 Districts Sanitation Garage and three Percent for Art installations.

Overall, DDC has received 19 design awards from the PDC in the last five years, including four in 2019, three in 2018 and three in 2017.


About the NYC Department of Design and Construction
The Department of Design and Construction is the City’s primary capital construction project manager. In supporting Mayor de Blasio’s long-term vision of growth, sustainability, resiliency, equity and healthy living, DDC provides communities with new or renovated public buildings such as firehouses, libraries, police precincts, and new or upgraded roads, sewers and water mains in all five boroughs. To manage this $15.5 billion portfolio, DDC partners with other City agencies, architects and consultants, whose experience bring efficient, innovative and environmentally-conscious design and construction strategies to City projects. For more information, please visit