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Macro Sea

Macro Sea
Industry Real estate development, Urban design, Interim Use Projects
Founded 2009 (2009) in New York City, New York, U.S.
Founder David Belt
Area served
Key people
David Belt, Rebecca Birmingham, Nicko Elliott, Liz Song, Stephanie Hemshrot
Services Real estate development, Architecture, Sustainable Design, and Urban Design

Macro Sea is an American real estate development firm formed in 2009 by developer David Belt. Primarily known for its development of adaptive reuse and interim use projects, Macro Sea has been the subject of substantial media coverage recently because of its development of New Lab, Building 128 in the Brooklyn Navy Yard. Their portfolio includes educational, arts, retail, residential buildings, student housing, and cultural centers.

Although Macro Sea is often dubbed a "creative" company in news coverage, Belt, the firm's managing principal and founder, has tended to disagree with this description. In a recent interview he argued: "I think all developers should care about design. I’ve met super creative people in business, in law, in government, and the idea that artists have the only right to be creative is becoming less prevalent as the field of design and design impact becomes more ubiquitous in the business world."

According to the firm's official website, Macro Sea's mission is to: "pursue projects we find interesting." In a recent lecture introduction at the University of Michigan's Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning, Venezuelan architect Mónica Ponce de León, described Macro Sea as a development firm that "draws on a multi-disciplinary create real estate projects that make money, look good, and have meaning," that transforms "underused objects and areas into covetable destinations."

Organizationally, Macro Sea is unique in that it exists as a series of ongoing collaborations between experts in a wide variety of disciplines including lawyers, artists, architects, designers and others. The company has served as the entrepreneurial framework for most of Belt's development pursuits since 2009.

Early collaborators included Jocko Weyland (2009-2011), Alix Feinkind (2009-2012), Elise DeChard (2011–2013), and Alexandra Escamilla (2012-2014). Currently the firm is composed of Belt, Rebecca Birmingham who serves as Creative Director and General Counsel (2010–present), Nicko Elliott as Design Director (2013–present), Liz Song as Designer and Project Manager (2015–present), Studio Director Stephanie Hemshrot (2014–present), and Special Projects Coordinator Allison Moss (2016-present).

The result of a public-private partnership with the City of New York, New Lab is a repurposing of Building 128 in the Brooklyn Navy Yard, which was a boiler and machine shop for shipmaking during most of the last century. When open, it will serve as a design and new manufacturing facility for companies and individuals creating products and hardware via the use of additive manufacturing technologies. New Lab is slated to open in June 2016 and has received substantial recent coverage in the media because of its significant role in attracting new industry back to the once dormant Navy Yard.



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