Farewell Mills Gatsch Architects completed a new arts complex, located on the bank of the Robinson’s Branch of the Rahway River, for the City of Rahway. The designation of Rahway in 2002 as a Transit Village made the city eligible for grants and assistance under New Jersey's Transit Village Initiative, and Rahway has capitalized on the central location of the train station in the downtown area to develop high density housing, artist live/work spaces, retail and a regional center for the arts.
This project provides a venue for local, regional, and national companies as well as offering arts education opportunities in an intimate performance space. The project involved the adaptive use and expansion of a circa 1920 industrial building originally built as a service center for Bell Telephone. The abandoned one-story building is constructed of single wythe concrete block and had suffered significant weather damage over the years. The renovated space houses a 200 seat theatre, classrooms, and a dance space as well as program support space.
The adaptive use of this building achieved a green agenda, not just in the environmental remediation of a former brownfield site but through its accessibility to transportation and its energy efficient design.