The Old American Can Factory Logo


The Old American Can Factory is an historic, six-building, 130,000 sq ft industrial complex in Gowanus, Brooklyn that houses a curated community of more than 300 artisans, visual/performing artists, poets/writers, filmmakers, architects/designers, publishers, non-profit organizations and others working in the creative industries.

The (OA) Can Factory was developed by, and is operated by, XØ Projects Inc (XØp) .


The (OA) Can Factory complex was built in phases between c. 1884 and c. 1910, first as Somers Brothers Decorated Tinware Co and after 1901, as American Can Co who built several new buildings and upgraded the original ones.  In the 1930’s, following the depression, portions of the complex were no longer used for manufacturing but the buildings generally remained in operation through World War II. By the late 1940’s, the buildings began to fall into disrepair until 1983, when six of the seven  buildings were acquired by its present ownership.

Initially, modest improvements were made to stabilize the buildings, and several light industrial businesses moved in. In 1989, after a major fire destroyed most of the rear mill building, XØp was engaged to lead its re-construction. XØp moved its offices to The (OA) Can Factory in 1991, and assumed management of the complex in 1996. Beginning in 2003, and over several years, XØp re-developed all six buildings with a focus on the arts and culture industries, and continues to operate the complex.

To that end, XØp has also produced and presented hundreds of exhibitions, performances, markets, lectures and other cultural events in and around the complex, often in collaboration with other institutions, to audiences totaling more than 100,000 persons.


In 2013, XØp initiated a comprehensive planning process to grow The (OA) Can Factory community and serve up to 1,000 persons to both work and live there, by building an additional ~200,000 sq ft to accommodate expanded facilities and additional programming. The new buildings would include work-live units for artists and artisans, with 25% dedicated to seniors and 25% for those with lower incomes. The expanded complex will be known as INDUSTRIANA®GC at The (OA) Can Factory.

Additional information about The (OA) Can Factory and its future is available upon request.

For information about XØ Projects Inc, go to XOPROJECTS.COM