The historic Navy hangars on Ford Island in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii have been renovated and expanded as offices and labs for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
Ford Island, today a National Historic Landmark at Pearl Harbor, was a sacred locus for ancient Hawaiian fertility rites before it became the U.S. Navy strategic operations base that the Japanese attacked on December 7, 1941.
The twin hangars that now anchor the Inouye Center narrowly escaped devastation as planes on the tarmac were hit and, nearby, the USS Utah was sunk.
The hangars, designed by Detroit-based Albert Kahn, were completed just months before the attack and remained intact.
But by 2005, when HOK began exploring ways of repurposing them for NOAA, they were derelict—with smashed windows and leaky roofs.
With the airfield inactive for decades, these great sheds stood abandoned.
A historic review at the project’s onset, though, ensured their survival, with exteriors untouched.