The New York Dock Company's imposing twin buildings stand as sentinals marking the entrance to Red Hook's waterfront - two of the few remains of Brooklyn's once-vibrant port and shipping industry.
Built in 1911 or 1913, the WPA Guide to New York City reports that these New York Dock Company buildings were "part of the two and one-half miles of Brooklyn waterfront owned by the New York Dock Company whose railroad sheds, warehouses, and massive gray loft buildings extend between the water front and the marginal streets from Brooklyn Bridge to Red Hook." The New York Dock Company operated in Red Hook from around 1901 to 1955, and owned almost all of the south and downtown Brooklyn waterfront, including 180 buildings and 32 piers.
The Dock Company building at 160 Imlay Street is shrouded in black netting and is in the process of being gutted to be converted into a 153-unit condo with nine floors. The project has been beset with much controversy and litigation. Most recently, the court sent the developer back to the Board to get approval again.
Its counterpart at 162 Imlay, seen below, is still intact, though the developer has expressed interest in trying to convert it into a similar luxury residential building or hotel. It's worth a trip down to Red Hook to check out this late-modernist beauty before it too gets a black Christo covering.