OMA /Jason Long revealed its latest adaptive reuse project in Detroit, transforming a former bakery and warehouse into mixed-use art, education and community space. Developed in collaboration with Library Street Collective, the project provides new headquarters for two local non-profits, PASC and Signal-Return, while creating a mix of artist studios, galleries, community-serving retail and gathering spaces. Dubbed “LANTERN”, the development is set to become an “activity condenser.”
The existing structure is currently in a state of disrepair, which opened up new opportunities for the design. An area missing its roof and end wall is transformed into an accessible courtyard at the heart of the development, surrounded by gallery spaces that reinforce its public character. The neighbourhood serving functions also open up to the courtyard. The two non-profit organizations will be the anchor of the 2,000 square meter complex, with programming dispersed within the existing structures to maximize community interface and access points.
PASC and Signal-Return are both extraordinary organizations with a multi-faceted approach to community building through the arts. To support and enhance their ambitions, we are both turning the building in on itself and out toward the neighborhood to bring a new density of activity and creative life to East Village - Jason Long, OMA Partner.
Existing bricked or boarded-up openings will be opened strategically, and gallery windows will be extruded to become vitrines. The south façade of the building currently features a blind concrete masonry wall. Rather than proposing windows, the design features 1,500 drilled holes in the concrete masonry façade, filled with glass blocks. This field of opening will subtly reveal the activities inside.
- Partner-in-Charge: Jason Long
- Associate: Chris Yoon
- Project Architect: Samuel Biroscak
- Team: Yiyao Wang, Cameron Fullmer, Mariana Curti
- Executive Architect: Metro Cad Group
- Structure: Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates, Inc.
- MEP: EAM Engineers, Inc.
- General Contractor: CIR Group Arts
- Nonprofit Partners: Signal-Return Press, Progressive Art Studio Collective (PASC)