Completed in 1903, the Brooklyn Rapid Transit Power Station was constructed to supply electricity to the newly consolidated local steam railroad, elevated railroad and street car system. Built in Romanesque Revival style by Thomas E. Murray, the BRT Powerhouse consisted of two parts. The Turbine Hall housed the dynamo and engines, and the Boiler House to the north contained the furnaces and coal storage. In the 1950s the Power Station was decommissioned and the Boiler House was demolished.
In the decades since, the site has been abandoned with restricted access. During the early 2000s, it came to be known as the “Batcave,” a destination for youth, explorers and artists, whose work covers its walls.
The site was acquired in 2012 by the Powerhouse Environmental Arts Foundation, a not-for-profit organization created to redevelop the property and operate the Powerhouse Workshop.