True, the Bowery’s
colonization gentrification transformation was well underway when the New Museum opened its stacked light boxes at the east end of Prince Street, but that quickly became the most recognizable symbol of the strip’s redevelopment. Now, another Downtown museum has its sights on expanding onto a neglected LES stretch: the Museum of Comic and Cartoon Art (MOCCA) has received proposals for a new building on a lot at the southwest corner of Delancey and Norfolk streets near the Manhattan end of the Williamsburg Bridge, including this one by Paris’s Planda Architecture.
MOCCA is currently housed in a fourth floor suite on Broadway in Soho, and this new building would provide space not only for temporary and permanent exhibitions, but would be organized around a central, circular library and reading space (below) for its collection of books, zines, cartoons and comics. The oval form, reached via an escalator, looks like a giant comic book speech bubble.
According to the Planda proposal, the building’s exterior would be clad in an opaque, cloud-like envelope to give the structure a light, almost weightless appearance. The corner lot is currently a parking lot, though there are no plans for construction anytime soon; this is just a competition entry for a MOCCA building that may or may not ever get built.