Make It in Brooklyn: Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates
Field: Architecture and design
HQ: 16 Court Street
Award-winning landscape architecture firm Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates (MVVA) has completed more than 350 projects since its founding in 1982, including internationally renowned urban spaces such as Brooklyn Bridge Park and Washington DC’s Pennsylvania Avenue. With a multi-floor headquarters on Court Street, MVVA does business from a space and neighborhood as dynamic and inspiring as its work.
At Home in Brooklyn
MVVA began as a boutique firm in Cambridge, MA and opened its first NYC office in Union Square in 2000. Nine years later, the firm moved to its Court Street home where it has expanded multiple times as the company has grown.
Originally attracted to Brooklyn for the opportunity to lease more studio space and financial incentives like REAP, which reduces rent through income tax credits for new jobs; MVVA appreciates the neighborhood’s new amenities like City Point and the buzz that helps attract and retain top creative talent.
After nearly 40 years in business, MVVA is still growing – the firm just reached 100+ employees, with more than 65 working from the Brooklyn office and more than 35 in Cambridge. Staff members come from more than 20 countries and more than 40 different schools, bringing unique perspectives and backgrounds to the team’s projects.
Part of the Community
80% of MVVA employees, including senior leadership, call Brooklyn home, and the firm’s collaborative approach extends to neighborhood involvement. Staff help keep the area green by planting trees on sidewalks near the office, and the firm engages with the city’s design community through industry events and student tours.
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