Materials + Technology | Rob Kesack

The objective was to produce a viable for-profit business scenario which could retain the integrity of the site and Newark’s industrial heritage.



Newark was once a city of industrial greatness,  one of the country’s hubs for invention and manufacturing well into the 20th Century. Much of that celebrated past, since erased by years of neglect and the wrecking ball, is now forgotten.

The focus of this project was on rekindling a lost history. This proposal took into consideration ways in which the specific technological history of the jail site, along with a forgotten business of brewing beer, might complement popular and modern socio-recreational trends. The objective was to produce a viable for-profit business scenario,  which could preserve the integrity of the site while re-activating something of Newark’s industrial heritage.

Therefore, my proposal is to create a brewery and brewpub within the existing building envelope. A retail space will be placed within the Warden’s  House, which will also become the main entrance to the site. The East Wing and West Wing will become dining halls, with the West Wing also serving as an event hall. The two steam engines and attached boilers will be relocated to the West Wing and partially submerged into the tunnels beneath. The masonry cells will be removed. The intention is to showcase the jail’s mechanical artifacts and create natural divisions of space in the triple height room. The North Wing will become the brewery and a portion of the Hospital Wing and Warden’s Office will become the kitchen. The remainder of the Hospital Wing will be a bottling area.


Reviving Newark Industry