2023 In Review – Preserving NJ’s Historic Built Environment
Exploring Ways Building Community is at the Heart of Design
This year reflected SSP Architects’ commitment to being community builders at heart. Whether it’s creating uplifting spaces in educational and healthcare facilities, preserving our state’s living history through design, building inviting civic spaces, or bolstering our mission to promote diversity, equity and inclusion in our built work and staffing, SSP’s team always strives to design sustainable, innovative, and practical spaces that empower people and enhance neighborhoods.
Today’s focus is on Preserving New Jersey’s Historic Built Environment:
Whether it is helping make history come alive through its conceptual design for the expanded Thomas Edison Center at Menlo Park, boosting the state’s brewing tradition with pubs that offer a taste of historic design as reflected in the ongoing success of Two Ton Brewery, or preserving the historic essence of Asbury Carbons while modernizing its interior, SSP is proud of its adaptable reuse and historic preservation work.
Two New Jersey projects with historic significance that moved ahead this year were:
- The Thomas Edison Center at Menlo Park, where the leadership is excitedly anticipating bringing to life the SSP designed facility. With the expected approval by the NJDEP (New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection of Parks and Forestry) moving forward in 2023, a major fundraising campaign will commence. The SSP design lays the foundation of an interactive, inviting community science/technology center. It will be a point of departure for the exploration of the amazing Edison discoveries that took place in Menlo Park, as well as energize people to pursue their inner innovator.
- SSP began a new project for Asbury Carbons – housed in a historic, late 19th century residence. This partnership started over a decade ago when SSP enlarged the company’s facility to provide expanded modern office space while also cleaning up and honoring the history of the old house that serves as its headquarters. Together, SSP and Asbury Carbons figured out how best to use their “new” old house and develop a design to construct a connecting line between it and an adjacent residence that came up for sale. Now, SSP is working to bring the company’s vision for a new lab and office space within this historic facility to life. Step one is a feasibility study to better access all options to make an informed decision on the best path forward.
SSP looks forward to building on these successes in 2024. We will continue our work to create buildings and spaces where communities can thrive. Our team will always keep in mind that as community architects, the buildings, and spaces we design are part of the bigger story – one that elevates people, helps them better interact with each other, and creates a more sustainable, healthier, and inspiring built environment.
This is part of a series of blogs focusing on SSP’s architectural designs and team members that made an impact in 2023. This blog focuses on SSP’s achievements in preserving the magnificent history that is incorporated into New Jersey’s built environment.