GREYHAWK provided construction management services for the restoration of the largest and oldest performing arts center in the United States, the renowned Brooklyn Academy of Music, universally known as BAM. Completed in 1907 (the last time the building’s exterior was handled), it was designated landmark status in 1978.

The renovation and replacement process for the facade was meticulous. Masonry restoration of this landmark required strict adherence to New York City landmarks’ guidelines. Elaborate steps were taken to correct aesthetic defects and return the facility to its original glory. Missing elements had to be replicated without damaging surrounding areas of this historic building. Numerous pieces of decorative terra cotta were replaced and were fabricated to match the original in shape, size, color and texture.

One of the project’s most significant challenges was to reconstruct the parapet and cornice, the building’s crown jewel. It was removed for safety reasons almost 50 years ago. Making sure the cornice was hung safely and supported securely was difficult due to its size, weight and structural components; this 15-foot-high element projects out five feet from the front of the building. The cornice, with its ornately designed lion’s heads and the balustrade incorporated into the parapet, is a unique prototype. Great attention was paid to detail, color, texture and size. Color matching was painstakingly derived from old archives, postcards and colors still remaining on the existing facade.

The owner also required the building to project its fine arts appeal even while under construction. To accomplish this task, a nylon mesh screen (called a scrim) wrapped the face of scaffold so that it looked like a large ginger bread cake.

GREYHAWK had the responsibility of phasing contractors’ work to be performed around rehearsals of operas, plays, orchestra performances and other events. In many cases, work had to be limited to certain hours and days with only quiet work taking place, such as pointing and staging.

Construction management and administration services were provided for the installation of a new structural glass canopy on the Opera House facade and infrastructure upgrades to both the BAM building on Lafayette Avenue and the Harvey Theatre on Fulton Avenue. Logistical challenges for this portion of the project included working in very tight spaces; relocating existing mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems prior to the steel installation; and adhering to a significantly condensed schedule to minimize impact to visitors and performances.