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Oct 10, 2008, 6:29 PM
The Park Plan

The future 85-acre Brooklyn Bridge Park will stretch 1.3 miles (http://www.brooklynbridgepark.org/farcry/login.cfm?returnUrl=%2Findex%2Ecfm%3Fobjectid%3D2FF424FA%2D3048%2D2C77%2DF2664FFEDAFD5F82&error=draft&showdraft=1) along the East River from north of the Manhattan Bridge to Atlantic Avenue. The Park includes Piers 1 - 6, each approximately the size of Bryant Park, and their uplands. Brooklyn Bridge Park will transform this underused and inaccessible stretch into a magnificent public space filled with lawns, recreation (http://www.brooklynbridgepark.org/index.cfm?objectid=EF42101A-3048-2C77-F25AD03BD9477BF0), beaches, coves, restored habitats, playgrounds and beautifully landscaped areas. The Park will connect visitors to the waterfront and NY Harbor in extraordinary ways with floating pathways, fishing piers, canals, paddling waters and restored wetlands. This is the most significant park development in Brooklyn since Prospect Park was built 135 years ago.

Park construction has begun, with sections of the park scheduled to open beginning Fall 2009. Click here (http://www.brooklynbridgepark.org/index.cfm?objectid=EF970011-FF7C-D738-9EFF83D7AB92692B) for images of the future park.

For more detailed information on park design and construction, see the website of the Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corporation (http://www.brooklynbridgeparknyc.org/).







Adding more renderings:






































Oct 22, 2008, 7:59 PM
Brooklyn Eagle daily

Brooklyn Bridge Park Construction Will Begin Soon

by Dennis Holt (Holt@brooklyneagle.net), published online 10-22-2008

This rendering shows the entrance to Brooklyn Bridge Park at Fulton Ferry, the construction of which is scheduled to begin in November. Image courtesy of Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corporation

DOWNTOWN BROOKLYN — “I took this job to build Brooklyn Bridge Park,” was the forceful comment by Regina Myer, president of the Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corporation, as she announced the first construction contract to be awarded for the stretch of piers that lies south of the bridge.

After a board of directors meeting, it was disclosed that Skanska USA Inc., a firm that already has done a lot of demolition work on the park site, will be awarded $47 million to develop Pier 1 and the entrance at Old Fulton Street.

This first phase of construction, scheduled to begin in November, will include about 1,300 feet of promenade along the East River and 2.5 acres of lawn with stunning views of the harbor, the Brooklyn Bridge and Lower Manhattan.

Also included in this phase will be the first portion of the Brooklyn Greenway, to be a borough-wide bikeway network. Pier 1 will have about 700 trees, water gardens and a playground at the northwestern edge of the pier.

The design of the Pier 1 element will include a number of sustainable initiatives such as underground water storage tanks, as well as a series of “river steps” overlooking the harbor. These steps will be constructed from salvaged granite taken from the Roosevelt Island Bridge.

When all this work is completed, by the end of 2009, 9.5 acres of new park will have been added to the existing DUMBO parts of the new park.

Myer, who used to be head of the Brooklyn Office of the City Planning Department, said, “We are thrilled that the construction of Brooklyn Bridge Park will begin this year.”

Eventually, the waterfront park, projected to be a major city tourist attraction, will stretch 1.3 miles from south of Atlantic Avenue to north of the Manhattan Bridge and will consist of 85 acres.

© Brooklyn Daily Eagle 2008

Oct 29, 2008, 5:06 PM
NY Daily News

Brooklyn Bridge Park coming next month, developer promises


Tuesday, October 28th 2008, 10:24 PM

Rendering of the view of Pier 1 in the planned Brooklyn Bridge Park.

Finally! After delays and ballooning costs dating back to the Pataki administration, construction at Brooklyn Bridge Park is slated to get underway next month.

That's the promise of the Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corp.

"I'm sure we are starting this November - really sure," said BBPD President Regina Myer. "We actually have the money to build. This is a very important step."

Using state and city funds, the corporation awarded a $47 million contract last week to Skanska USA for the first phase of park construction. The money covers construction on Pier 1 and a new entrance to the park at Old Fulton St.

"Every park needs a great entrance," Myer said. "And there will be two wonderful viewing lawns with new topography to accentuate the views of the Brooklyn Bridge and the upper harbor."

Because the viewing lawns will be elevated, Myer said, new river steps will be built, paved with granite salvaged from the Roosevelt Island Bridge.

There will be about 1,300 feet of new promenade on the edge of Pier1, along with water gardens and a new playground for children.

The completed Pier 1 will add 9.5 new acres of park to the existing Empire Fulton Ferry State Park and the Main Street City Park, according to the corporation.

"Over the course of the next year, New Yorkers will see the unique transformation of a vacant pier and the development of a new landscape along the water's edge," Myer promised.

Construction is to be completed by the end of next year.

"We have a very aggressive construction schedule. We are pushing to work as hard as we can to get the public on site," she said. "Construction should go quickly."

At the Brooklyn Heights Association, Irene Janner said her group certainly hopes so.

"We're really looking forward to it," she said. "It looks like it's a go."

© Copyright 2008 NYDailyNews.com. All rights reserved.

Nov 27, 2008, 7:53 PM

November 25, 2008

Brooklyn Bridge Park: The Timeline Emerges


Three "significant portions" — that's part of phase 1, folks — of Brooklyn Bridge Park should be done by the end of 2009 (construction started in late October). That's the word from the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy (you can check out their latest newsletter here). Despite the tanking economy, two-thirds of the $47 million park will be open to the public by 2013. If we're going by previous stats, it should be a hit: 270,000 visitors from around the world showed up last summer alone. Above you can see the proposed schedule. Last we checked, neighborhood issues still unresolved included some residents' fears that the park will become a staging area for construction equipment (which will be nearby to fix the BQE) and grumblings that the beloved raised walkways in the park design had been removed. Oh, and maybe the golf balls from One Brooklyn Bridge Park's terrace putting greens, too.

Nov 28, 2008, 12:48 AM
Brooklyn in da house.:banana:

Dec 2, 2008, 11:39 PM
Brooklyn Paper

More delays at Bridge ‘park’

By Mike McLaughlin
The Brooklyn Paper

The builders of the Brooklyn Bridge Park development are already two months behind on a new construction schedule that is only three months old!

Though work was supposed to start this month, three pieces of the waterfront project that are supposed to open next October remain quiet: Pier 1, just south of the Brooklyn Bridge, which was to begin last month; and Brooklyn Bridge Plaza, at the end of Old Fulton Street, and Pier 6, near the foot of Atlantic Avenue, both of which were supposed to start this month.

“We WILL start Pier 1 this month,” Warner Johnston, a spokesman for the Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corporation, vowed, though as The Brooklyn Paper went to press, there was only one business day remaining in November.

Even more alarming, Johnston confirmed that work on Pier 6 is now set for January — making it at least two months behind the much-touted schedule that was unveiled in July.

He said there was “no real delay” because the October and November starting points were simply “projections.”

Johnston did not say when work would start on Brooklyn Bridge Plaza, the highest profile portion of the embattled development. As The Brooklyn Paper reported, that part of the project is embroiled in an intergovernmental battle between the state development agency and the city Department of Transportation.

The city agency has resisted calls that it give control of land beneath the Gothic span for a grand public plaza, with its greenmarket and skating rink. Instead, the city has clung to the property, saying it needs the space for five years of repair work to the bridge.

That insistence raises serious doubts about the Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corporation’s ongoing promise to open the plaza schedule next fall.

The latest snag follows more than 20 years of false starts and setbacks for Brooklyn Bridge Park. Before demolition work began in earnest this year, there were three groundbreakings to signal the birth of the open space portion of the condo and park development.
“They have delayed and stalled for years,” said Judi Francis, president of the Brooklyn Bridge Park Defense Fund, which is critical of the state’s management of the development. “We just want a park.”

Then-Gov. Pataki and Mayor Bloomberg allocated $150 million to build the entire 1.3-mile long park in 2002, saying it would be built by 2012. Now the park’s budget exceeds $300 million — officials will not share updated figures — and only two-thirds of the development is scheduled to be built.

The frequently revised timelines have created confusion among officials and residents who cannot keep up with the ever-changing schedule. The Web site Brownstoner.com falsely reported on Tuesday that construction began in October. That story apparently stemmed from a newsletter put out by the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy, which runs public events in existing greenspaces that are slated to become part of Brooklyn Bridge Park.

Even though the Brownstoner report suggested that the open space and condo project was moving forward, many commenters expressed exasperation anyway.

“Plant some grass, stick in some benches and let’s go,” wrote Kevin Walsh, an amateur historian and founder of Forgotten NY. “For the love of God, they built the Empire State Building in one year.”

©2008 The Brooklyn Paper

Jan 15, 2009, 2:24 PM
From the east river development thread:


Brooklyn Bridge Park Updated & Fully Revealed


These are the Pier 5 Recreation Fields.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008, by Robert

Here is a big new set of renderings of Brooklyn Bridge Park, some of which have been trickling out for the last week or so and some of which haven't been seen before. In any case, it's been quite a while since new renderings were released. Land clearance for the park is underway and two sections (at Pier One and Pier Six, at opposite ends at Fulton Ferry Landing and Atlantic Avenue) are supposed to be finished late next year. Entire park will stretch for 1.3 miles. The original budget was $150 million, but it has climbed to $300 million, with the trouble being that only $225 million is funded. The Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corp. estimates that about 2/3 of the park will be done by 2012.


Here's a view from Pier 1 to Brooklyn Bridge Park Plaza


A view of the future Pier 6.


This is the Tidal Pool and Performance Stair near Pier 2.


Boating Basin with Pier 4 Nature Island and Beach.


This is called the Picnic Peninsula.


Movies on the lawn north of the Brooklyn Bridge.


The park's entrance fromm Atlantic Avenue.


Atlantic Avenue Promenade and Playground.

Jan 15, 2009, 2:46 PM
Site of the park (Dec 26th 2008)





Bonus shots from the Bridge itself...






Jan 15, 2009, 3:38 PM

Winter '09 for First Part of Brooklyn Bridge Park


Wednesday, January 14, 2009, by Robert

BROOKLYN HEIGHTS—There is news to report about everybody's favorite Brooklyn park mega-project, Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy, there is an updated schedule for Pier One, which will be the first part of the park to open.

Utilities are being installed and by February [Skanska] will be importing 60,000 cubic yards of fill and topsoil by truck. This fill will be used to create the grading, including a 25 foot hill, on Pier 1....Pier 1 will turn green at the end of spring with the planting of trees and shrubs, and the laying of sod, turf, and ground cover.

Paved pathways, benches, and railings will be installed in the fall. They're anticipating an opening of two big lawns in winter 2009 (bummer) and opening the southern end in summer 2010. There will be 9.5 acres of green space. More info at the Brookyn Bridge Park Development Corp. website.


Jan 17, 2009, 8:28 PM
60,000 cubic yards that is a hell of alot of fill and top soil. Thats anywhere from 2500 to 5000 truck loads depending on the types of trucks they use. Are there any jobs in the area requiring alot of haul off? If not i wonder where all that fill material will come from.:shrug:

Jan 18, 2009, 1:13 AM
New York just gets better everyday.

Jan 18, 2009, 3:55 PM
Those park plans are really cool. I grew up on the Mississippi River and spent my entire childhood at the various riverfront parks. I've always felt New York needs more of those. I didn't get a chance to get to get to Promenade Park, the view of which looks to be much improved, so I don't have a real good feel for the area. Next time I visit my Brooklyn friends, I will definitely walk through that park.

A couple questions. Both this photo and the render show the same view.


The BQE is noticeably absent in the render. Will that landscaped hill with trees actually be built, hiding the highway? That's amazing if true.
Does the BQE become a tunnel then? And will there be access from the upper Promenade down to the waterfront down that hill? It also looks like parkinglots have disapeared, which is good.

Another question, what is the structure between New Dock and Old Dock streets just north of the bridge? It doesn't really look like much, and looks like that lot would really add to the park space there, but it's not part of the plans.

Jan 19, 2009, 12:33 AM
Those park plans are really cool. I grew up on the Mississippi River and spent my entire childhood at the various riverfront parks. I've always felt New York needs more of those.

The City has been rapidly reclaiming the waterfront from its industrial past (I created the east river waterfront thread to keep up with east river developments), and a lot of waterfront parks are through various stages around the city. However, even without that the City has extensive waterfront promenades and beaches.

The BQE is noticeably absent in the render. Will that landscaped hill with trees actually be built, hiding the highway? That's amazing if true.
Does the BQE become a tunnel then?

It was my understanding that the "hill" was just a hill (somewhat similar to what they are planning for Governor's Island), with the view of the expressway just blocked from that view. But I haven't looked extensively at the plans.

Jan 19, 2009, 12:38 AM

This is called the Picnic Peninsula.

This will probably be my favorite place in the park...;)

Jan 19, 2009, 12:41 AM
Great project and idea for that matter. It will certainly thrive.

Jan 19, 2009, 12:42 AM
60,000 cubic yards that is a hell of alot of fill and top soil. Thats anywhere from 2500 to 5000 truck loads depending on the types of trucks they use. Are there any jobs in the area requiring alot of haul off? If not i wonder where all that fill material will come from.:shrug:

There's always dredging in the harbor, and the city's ongoing massive water-tunnel and subway construction projects. But I don't know where this particular soil is coming from. In a related note, they've been placing the soil and plantings at the High Line park for months now.

Mar 13, 2009, 1:31 AM

Bloomberg Grabbing for Governors Island, Brooklyn Bridge Park

March 12, 2009

Mayor Bloomberg is seeking to grab control of Governors Island and Brooklyn Bridge Park, pushing the Paterson administration aside in an attempt to spur progress on the two projects, both of which would create new real estate development and public parkland.

As part of the mayor’s plan, his administration would take money it invested in the Javits Center (the city and state each have committed $300 million for a major expansion that was subsequently scaled down) and put it toward Governors Island and Brooklyn Bridge Park.

“We would use that money to continue to develop these two things which are great parts of the city and the city has more of an interest,” Mr. Bloomberg told reporters Thursday. “I think the state government has their own problems. It’s a good deal for the state. If not, they can take them over or close them down.”

The power grab exhibits some of the frustration the Bloomberg administration has had with the governor’s office over numerous slow-moving economic development projects requiring billions in public spending. The Javits Center has not expanded as the Spitzer administration re-evaluated a much-criticized Pataki administration plan; and Moynihan Station has made little or no progress, effectively, since Governor Pataki left office.

Control over Governors Island, the 172-acre former Coast Guard base where officials hope to ultimately create commercial development and a signature park, is shared between the city and the state. Brooklyn Bridge Park, a set of piers near Brooklyn Heights slated to be transformed into a park with adjacent residential towers, is controlled by the state, though funded by both governments.

A spokeswoman for Governor Paterson did not signal a position on the issue either way, saying the state is working with the city on the issue.

THE COUP (OR SWAP) attempt comes as there is uncertainty over the fate of Governors Island, given that the governor’s proposed budget does not include any money for the agency that operates the island. The agency, and also the summer ferry service that brings visitors to the island over the summer, would shut down April 1 without money in the budget. Supporters of the mayor’s plan said at a public meeting on Governors Island on Thursday that even if money does ultimately come through this year, the uncertainty is bad for the project, and the city/state split is not working. If the Bloomberg administration assumed control, it could show progress thanks to the Javits funds, it reasons, rather than the relatively slow pace that the development has experienced to date.

Brooklyn Bridge Park is moving along at a faster pace as construction is starting, though the city has wanted to see more state money go into the project. It now has a price tag of $350 million but only a budget of $230 million (it also requested around $150 million in stimulus money to replace aging piles, a cost that could ultimately be borne locally).

With regard to Governors Island, the state-appointed chairman of the island’s governing board, Avi Schick, sought to brush aside fears that the island would shut down.

“Governors Island will be open this summer,” he said flatly, speaking to reporters Thursday morning, adding that the governor “remains committed” to the island. He said Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, with whom he has a good relationship, is behind this project and would be pushing for it in the final state budget.

Whether or not the trade happens will depend on the governor, though he and the mayor have had discussions about it before, apparently with no resolution. The governor’s economic development chief, Marisa Lago, reacted coolly to the concept Thursday. “I don’t think there is a major initiative that hasn’t involved a multiplicity of different actors," she said.

It is unclear what the mayor’s suggestion to use Javits Center funds would mean for the convention center. Right now, the Javits Center is paying for a recently approved renovation with funds from a hotel tax levied in order to pay for an expansion. Without the city’s money, the convention center would not be able to afford the expansion currently envisioned—about 160,000 square feet—though the city contends that expansion would not happen for years anyway, at which point it could add funds. It also would shift far more financial burden onto the city, especially if it adds additional money to Javits further down the line.

Mar 18, 2009, 11:42 AM



March 18, 2009

By the summer, Pier 6 in Brooklyn Heights will finally begin to look like a park - featuring volleyball courts, a dog run and a magnificent new playground with views of the Manhattan skyline.

Officials overseeing construction of the 85-acre park met with Community Board 2 this week and outlined the updated construction timeline.

Mar 18, 2009, 11:46 AM

Brooklyn Bridge Park's Pier 6 Getting Fast-Tracked


Tuesday, March 17, 2009, by Lockhart

Following yesterday's news that construction is underway at Pier 1 of Brooklyn Bridge Park (the section of the park that anchors the Brooklyn Bridge end) a community board meeting last night brought news that Pier 6—located at the opposite end of the park, adjacent to the the One Brooklyn Bridge Park development (above)—is also on track for preliminary completion this year. Woo-hoo!

Brooklyn Heights Blog fills in the details on the Pier 6 timeline:

Currently, workers are laying pipes for utilities and stormwater retention in the lot, which is at the western end of Atlantic Avenue. Crews will soon start structural work on the 35-foot pedestrian path that will lead from the park’s entrance at Atlantic Avenue to an elevated platform halfway down the pier that overlooks the harbor.

The timeline is:

· In the spring, construction begins on three sand volleyball courts, 1.6-acre playground and expansive swing set, and the 1,000-square-foot concession stand
By summer, “the park will start to look like a park,” said project manager Jennifer Klein. The dog run will take shape, and trees will be planted. (There will be honey locusts, black locusts, oaks, and catalpas.)
· And in the fall, the actual playground equipment will arrive, long-leaf yellow pine cladding will go up on the concession stand, and dozens of benches will line the walkways throughout the park

The remainder of the pier — including the water taxi dock — is not yet funded, Myer said.

As a refresher, here's an overview of the entire park as it's expected to look upon final completion. Good times.


Mar 25, 2009, 12:16 PM
periquito (http://www.flickr.com/photos/periquito/3384052302/sizes/l/)


Mar 25, 2009, 10:53 PM
Pier 1 construction from curbed (http://www.flickr.com/photos/curbed/3382760540/sizes/l/)





Apr 9, 2009, 6:25 AM
Renderings and maps of the large, waterfront park (also posted on 1st page)






































Apr 9, 2009, 9:21 AM

The Park Promenade will be the park's major north-south unifying element. At 30 feet wide, it will give ample room for pedestrians, joggers and cyclists.
This photo shows how it has been marked throughout the site.


Apr 9, 2009, 9:40 AM

Architects Dream Up BQE Silencer for Brooklyn Bridge Park


Tuesday, April 7, 2009, by Joey

Now that the construction of Brooklyn Bridge Park is humming along, lazy days spent idling riverside are but a few hundreds of millions of dollars away. But what's that rumbling sound interrupting our Ultimate Frisbee fantasies? It's the dastardly BQE, according to the Studio for Civil Architecture and Hage Engineering, but fear not, our heroes have joined forces to come up with an idea for muffling the traffic noise.

Get a load of the Brooklyn Bridge Connector, a highway-hiding piece of civic art made up of steel arches and translucent sound barrier shells, covered by a solar canopy. The proposal has its own website—complete with sound effects!—and according to its creators, the Brooklyn Bridge Connector is the perfect cure for what will ail the park.

Via the release, we hear from Studio for Civil Architecture principal Donald Rattner:

“There is a practical need to deal with the vehicular noise that emanates from the BQE,” says Rattner who lives a scant three blocks from the much trafficked highway. “Regardless of what is ultimately built on the waterfront – housing, restaurants, ball fields, passive recreation areas – visitors to the open space and surrounding structures will be subject to relentless, unpleasant, potentially deafening noise – at 85 decibels, the equivalent of standing next to an operating lawnmower. But there is also an aesthetic dimension that needs to be addressed. Our proposal seeks to provide a pragmatic solution to the problem and simultaneously to offer those on both sides of the river an attractive piece of public sculpture to appreciate.”

Repairs to this section of the BQE are slated to begin in 2018, so heck, why not? We applaud this vision, but very softly, so as not to create potentially deafening noise.





Reader Responds: No, This is How You Silence a Highway


Wednesday, April 8, 2009, by Joey

A Curbed reader notes yesterday's coverage of the fanciful Brooklyn Bridge Connector—steel arches, translucent shells and a solar canopy meant to quiet the BQE for the sake of the under-construction Brooklyn Bride Park—and fires back:

I read your post about the BQE silencer, and I wanted to let you know that isn't the only silencer dreamed up for Brooklyn Bridge Park. In fact, I've put plenty of work into similar plan. A big difference, I use vegetation and trees to absorb the noise and exhaust for the cars. I also incorporated a bio fuel gas station within the structure.

In breaking down the dual use of the trees, I calculated the air pollution along this stretch of highway and determined how much vegetation the city needs to offset it. I've also done extensive research into placing Bio-Fuel stations around the city. This was all part of a project at Parsons, under Jared Della Valle and Andrew Bernheimer of Della Valle Bernheimer Architects.

More diagrams and images of Silencer II: Attack of the Veggies can be found here. (http://www.flickr.com/photos/13806172@N05/)Which noise-canceling proposal gets the edge? We're inclined to say this one, because of the inclusion of that sweet driver's seat rendering. It's like we're already zipping through the Brooklyn of the future!


curbed (http://www.flickr.com/photos/curbed/3423581691/sizes/o/in/photostream/)

Apr 12, 2009, 11:35 AM
The new promenade marking is seen again, here.....

sp1te (http://www.flickr.com/photos/sp1te/3434383590/sizes/o/)


Apr 13, 2009, 12:10 PM
This is going to be a beautiful park, I just know it.

Apr 13, 2009, 12:22 PM
This is going to be a beautiful park, I just know it.

I think this will be on the magnitude of Central Park, in terms of what it means. Along with the High Line, I think it's one of the more exciting new developments in the city. In a sense, they're both great gifts. Governors Island also has that potential.

Apr 21, 2009, 11:51 AM
lauriepremer (http://www.flickr.com/photos/24282019@N00/3457939690/sizes/l/in/set-72157616975828931/)



TommyIMiles (http://www.flickr.com/photos/tommylmiles/3457021626/sizes/l/)


May 1, 2009, 6:07 AM
bageltam (http://www.flickr.com/photos/46065966@N00/3474318509/sizes/l/)




cudipeich (http://www.flickr.com/photos/cudipeich/3466133841/sizes/l/)



May 10, 2009, 7:04 PM
Marty Bishop (http://www.flickr.com/photos/martybishop/3517151267/sizes/o/)


May 14, 2009, 2:05 PM
kingfal (http://www.flickr.com/photos/kingfal/3530041264/sizes/l/)



May 16, 2009, 11:29 AM
Another look at the future walkway (marked in white)

Passetti (http://www.flickr.com/photos/passetti/3535814418/sizes/l/)


May 18, 2009, 10:49 PM
kilgub (http://www.flickr.com/photos/kilgub/3542373879/sizes/l/)


May 19, 2009, 12:46 AM

Brooklyn Bridge Park Gets Some Trees


May 18, 2009

The first batch of trees—including Honeylocusts, Magnolias, Lindens, Catalpas, Serviceberries, Sweetgums, London Planes, and several species of Oaks—arrived at Brooklyn Bridge Park last week. According to a press release, the trees will temporarily reside on the Pier 3 uplands while they await their final resting grounds at Piers 1 and 6, both of which are scheduled to open by the end of the year

May 24, 2009, 11:51 AM


This will bring much activity to the Brooklyn side of the east river waterfront...

neilta (http://www.flickr.com/photos/neilta/3544187773/sizes/l/)


May 29, 2009, 6:10 AM
mikelen15 (http://www.flickr.com/photos/theglobetrotters/3573906528/sizes/l/)


May 31, 2009, 12:28 AM
GhrisGoldNY (http://www.flickr.com/photos/chrisgold/3578957789/sizes/l/)


Jun 4, 2009, 5:09 AM
RageHaus (http://www.flickr.com/photos/ragehaus/3593228354/sizes/l/in/set-72157619202477270/)



Jun 11, 2009, 1:05 PM
newsfille (http://www.flickr.com/photos/newsfille/3615778074/sizes/l/)


Jun 12, 2009, 11:27 PM
This has been largely overshadowed by the development of the High Line park, but this one has also been moving steadily forward, with two segments planned to open later this year at opposite ends of the park. And it's no less exciting to me...


Brooklyn Bridge Park Slowly Takes Shape

by Dennis Holt

BROOKLYN — The major development regarding Brooklyn Bridge Park reported in the Eagle on Thursday had to take place sometime, but all attention has been focused on the new stuff going up on Piers 1-6.

So the positive news about the “other” part of Brooklyn Bridge Park surprised a lot of people. In fact, the DUMBO part of the new waterfront park is now officially a part of Brooklyn Bridge Park. Fulton Ferry State Park, a large part of it landfill, is also now Brooklyn Bridge Park. The classic buildings — the Empire Stores and the Tobacco Warehouse — are now in Brooklyn Bridge Park.

All of this came about with the stroke of a few pens in New York and Albany and the promise by the Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corporation to fork over 99 bucks through 2108 to the State Parks department. Does anyone expect to be around by then?

This non-dramatic transfer of many acres runs counter to all the high drama of almost 30 years in the evolution of Brooklyn Bridge Park, but, again, almost all that drama concerned Piers 1 to 6.

come, more people will look with interest to the east of the Brooklyn Bridge. For one thing, there will be a dramatic new carousel added to that site — Jane’s (as in Walentas) Carousel — to be housed in what is said to be a stunning glass-dominated structure designed by Jean Nouvel. This will become a big draw.

Another element that most people have forgotten is part of the original housing plan for revenue creation. A new residential building was expected to be built near Jay Street. One may still be constructed, but it has been held up because of the economy. Expect construction to begin early next year.

But the big news about development concerns the landmarked Tobacco warehouse and Empire Stores. The latter is a very tough nut to crack because of its internal architecture — vertical support beams dominate the entire space. This restricts planning options.

The park development team will issue a request for proposals, but don’t expect too many responders. For sure, David Walentas will be one: he’s had his eye on the Stores for some time, thinking of arts and culture venues and possibilities. Also for certain will be a rooftop restaurant on the eastern part of the building.

And since the Dock Street project has been approved, St. Ann’s Warehouse will need a new home. All sensible and practical eyes have been focused on the Tobacco Warehouse. If a roof is installed, it will be a logical solution as well as a park revenue raiser.

But there will also be opposition to this because a roofed theater will also be a big draw. People who have opposed almost any development that increases the flow of people will oppose that plan. (One element of the opposition to the Dock Street project that was never mentioned was the 450-car parking garage. The garage will draw people to that part of the new park, and available parking will also draw drivers to Warehouse performances.)

So at a time when two important sections of the park are being built — the two entrances to the pier portions — a major resolution of the DUMBO half of Brooklyn Bridge Park has also taken place.

Jun 16, 2009, 7:01 AM

New signs of life at Bridge ‘Park’

Further evidence that parkland is being built at the Brooklyn Bridge Park waterfront
development comes in the form of trees that are biding their time until they can be
permanently planted at the norther and southern ends of the park along the Brooklyn Heights shore.

By Mike McLaughlin
June 15, 2009

The proposed Brooklyn Bridge Park showed new signs of life last week as officials moved to take the reins of its first piece of actual parkland — the existing Empire-Fulton Ferry State Park.

The management breakthrough came weeks after the first signs of life — literal life — took root on what will become an 85-acre park and condo project. A mini-forest of almost 500 magnolias, lindens, serviceberries, sweetgums, London planes catalpas and oaks now stands in a nursery midway along Furman Street between Old Fulton Street and Atlantic Avenue.

The trees are slated to be planted in the fall on the northern and southern ends of the park development.

The Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corporation, a state body roused from years of a sub-performing slumber, revealed at its board meeting on Wednesday that it had signed a 99-year lease, effective next year, with the state Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation to run the existing Empire-Fulton Ferry State Park in DUMBO.

It is one of the few instances when a state park agency has given up management of a park to a state development agency. However unique, the move was expected because the Civil War-era Empire Stores warehouse, which is part of Empire-Fulton Ferry State Park, will someday be renovated and turned into a revenue-producing development that will underwrite some maintenance costs for the entire park development.

Eventually, Empire-Fulton Ferry State Park, which is home to the popular “Movies with a View” summer series, will be subsumed into the entire $350-million Brooklyn Bridge Park, as pieces of it are created on piers and uplands stretching south to Atlantic Avenue.

The first phase of newly built green areas are due to open at the end of this year on Pier 1, at the foot of Old Fulton Street, and Pier 6, near the end of Atlantic Avenue.

Jun 17, 2009, 8:45 AM
Most Proposed plan for BROOKLYN is the major development regarding Brooklyn Bridge Park. Bridge park covered lots of people.

So the positive news about the “other” part of Brooklyn Bridge Park surprised a lot of people. In fact, the new waterfront park is now officially a part of Brooklyn Bridge Park.

Jun 17, 2009, 1:27 PM
missmareck (http://www.flickr.com/photos/missmareck/3634865045/sizes/l/)


Jun 17, 2009, 2:03 PM
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Jun 19, 2009, 11:43 PM
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Jun 21, 2009, 7:42 PM
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Jun 25, 2009, 3:39 PM

Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corporation President Regina Myer said: “We are so pleased that we have been able to work with the Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation to reach an agreement that will allow us to move forward with meaningful improvements to Brooklyn Bridge Park. We are also excited to have this extraordinary neighborhood gem, the historic Jane’s Carousel call Brooklyn Bridge Park its home. This has been a milestone year for us and, with both Piers 1 and 6 opening at the end of 2009; Brooklyn Bridge Park will soon be a reality.”

Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz said: “Bravo to Governor Paterson, Regina Myer and the Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corporation, and the State Parks Department for reaching an agreement that will allow the BBPDC to manage Empire-Fulton Ferry State Park and transform Brooklyn’s waterfront into Brooklyn Bridge Park—an ‘urban emerald’ of parkland, beaches, recreation, bikeways, playgrounds, historic structures—and even an old-fashioned carousel. And, of course, there are those spectacular views! I have long advocated for this arrangement and am thrilled to see it come to fruition. The economies of our State, City and Brooklyn need this project more than ever before—and today’s announcement will ensure that what Prospect Park was to the 19th century, Brooklyn Bridge Park will be to the 21st.”

Jane Walentas, who renovated and donated the Jane’s Carousel, said: “It is truly a thrill to imagine this Landmark 1922 Carousel spinning on that magical point on the river between the Brooklyn & Manhattan Bridges. Restoring the Carousel to its original splendor and donating it, together with a new Jean Nouvel designed building, to Brooklyn Bridge Park for children of future generations to ride and enjoy has been my wish and my passion. I am so pleased to have the Carousel be part of what will be the most exciting waterfront park in New York City.”

Jun 27, 2009, 9:28 PM
JUNE 25, 2009









Jul 4, 2009, 12:26 AM
Tim Musson (http://www.flickr.com/photos/timothymnz/3658350234/sizes/o/)




Jul 21, 2009, 1:44 PM
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Jul 21, 2009, 2:33 PM
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Jul 22, 2009, 4:56 AM
That last pic is such a well composed shot :)

Jul 29, 2009, 4:47 AM
bingpoint (http://www.flickr.com/photos/bingpoint/3759766806/sizes/l/)


Aug 4, 2009, 10:56 PM
Waiting to be placed in their new home...

The Two Ks (http://www.flickr.com/photos/rewriteable/3780665443/sizes/l/in/set-72157621921798818/)



Aug 5, 2009, 10:01 PM

Brooklyn Bridge Park Update: Construction Moving Fast

If you've been to the Brooklyn Heights Promenade or Brooklyn Landing recently, you've probably noticed lots of work going on at the Brooklyn Bridge Park site. We were curious about what's been happening, and asked the Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corporation to give us a tour of the current site. While things are still very much under construction now, they told us that parts of the park will open as early as the end of this year

Looking west towards the city over a dug-out area that will become a salt marsh (Jake Dobkin)

Looking north towards the new hill, past terraces that will be interlaced with freshwater elements

The Cold Storage Warehouse, which will be demolished next month. Some of the timber and external fittings will be reused on the site as benches and other elements.
According to the Development Corporation, a controversial condo and hotel complex is still scheduled to rise on the site-- proceeds of which will be used to fund the park.

Newly planted trees destined for Pier 1 (near Old Fulton Street) and Pier 6 (near Atlantic Avenue) sit at an acclimation site getting used to the environment.

Terraces made from stone recycled from the Roosevelt Island Bridge project, facing west towards the city

Pier 2 structure, which will be partially covered with a clear ceiling to be used as a three season environment.

Children's area near Fulton Landing, looking towards Brooklyn Heights.

An inlet between Pier 2 and the rest of the park. Kayakers will be allowed to paddle through, while pedestrians will get to the pier over a small bridge.

At the top of the new hill, which was made from rocks excavated from the East Side Access Project (connecting LIRR to Grand Central.) The view includes three bridges, the Statue of Liberty, and the whole downtown skyline.

Aug 6, 2009, 9:45 AM
What? There is absolutely no chance they'll save the beautiful storage building? I think some flats and a tower that rises out of a section would be great.

Aug 6, 2009, 5:31 PM
What? There is absolutely no chance they'll save the beautiful storage building? I think some flats and a tower that rises out of a section would be great.

I don't know why. For whatever reason, they're not saving it.

Aug 8, 2009, 10:11 PM
Another update...

Park progress: Special Edition - An Inside Look!


Yesterday evening, your correspondent joined a group of thirty or so people, including BHB contributor Matthew Parker and Brooklyn Heights Association Board of Governors member Martin Schneider, for a tour of the northern portion (Piers 1 and 2) of the construction site for Brooklyn Bridge Park. Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corporation President Regina Myer (photo above) greeted us, after which we split into two smaller groups for the tour.


Steve Noone, a senior associate at Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates, Inc., Landscape Architects, the prime contractor for the park project, was the guide for my group.


Following Steve, we walked southward up the hill that has been deposited on Pier 1, made of material excavated in the construction of the LIRR “Midtown Connector” tunnel. The southern portion of Pier 1 can bear the weight of this fill, because it is itself built on landfill instead of on pilings. The tall poles will support lights.


Above is a view from near the summit of the hill, which is 27′ above the level of the pier deck. The other group is passing on what will become a riverside esplanade.


Looking southward along the soon-to-be esplanade, the “River Stairs” leading up the hill are to the right. These are made from stone removed from one of the Harlem River bridges during its reconstruction.


We’re looking eastward now, along what in a previous post I called the “Grand Canyon”. The cold storage warehouse buildings in the background are soon to be demolished. The older parts of the building complex contain timbers from a now-extinct species of Southern longleaf pine, a portion of which will be used for park benches. The plan is for these buildings to be replaced by a hotel and residential complex. The building that will replace the one on the right in the photo will be considerably lower than the existing one, and will thereby open up a larger view plane from the Brooklyn Heights Promenade. There will also be a gap between that building and the new center building (the center is the tall one with “National” on the top, which is planned to be replaced by a slightly lower building) which will afford a clear view of the River from Squibb Park.

The wall at the right of the photo above marks the southern boundary of the newer portion of Pier 1, which, as noted above, sits on landfill. To the right is the older, northern portion, which sits on pilings. The deck is to be removed, leaving the pilings to provide a habitat for marine life and as a kind of picturesque ruin, rather like the plan for Pier 4 (the small wooden former railroad pier near the foot of Montague Street), which is to leave it as is. Steve pointed out that the exposed pilings will “express” the routes of the tunnels for the 2 and 3 trains, because there will be gaps between the pilings along the tunnel routes.


Walking eastward by the “Grand Canyon”, we came to a broad patch of water that is slated to become a salt marsh. It will be planted with spartina, a marsh grass common on the Northeastern coast (and also a damn good novel).


Here’s a view of the Promenade and BQE from a fresh perspective.


Kayaks and rowboats will be able to use the “safe water” canal that has been opened between Pier 2 and the shore, at the right in the photo above, and which will be continued next to Pier 3. (In response to a question raised by reader Andrew Porter in the comments to my previous Park Progress post, Steve confirmed that there will be safety barriers to prevent boats from straying under the pier structures.) The body of water extending to the left in the photo is a “spiral pool” that will provide a means of entrance to and exit from the canal for kayaks and small boats.

Aug 10, 2009, 6:51 PM
Demolishing this warehouse? What a crime. If remade into condos/lofts, it woulv'e sold out like hotcakes, considering that the nearby DUMBO is already built out.


Aug 11, 2009, 5:01 PM
Agreed. Unless there is a structural problem with those existing buildings they could have been turned into something special.

Aug 11, 2009, 11:41 PM
Agreed. Unless there is a structural problem with those existing buildings they could have been turned into something special.

There probably wasn't the money for it. If it were more profitable to leave those buildings, I'm sure they would have, especially considering the funding issues the development has had.

Aug 31, 2009, 10:33 PM
AxIFBrooklyn (http://www.flickr.com/photos/9890663@N06/3869264211/sizes/l/)


Sep 11, 2009, 5:13 AM
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Sep 11, 2009, 4:36 PM
I'm a pretty big fan of anything that has urban kayaking and water taxi's in canals. This project looks like it has both. :tup:

Sep 22, 2009, 1:25 PM
SEPTEMBER 21, 2009





Sep 29, 2009, 12:41 AM
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Oct 7, 2009, 4:49 PM
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Oct 9, 2009, 6:07 AM
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Oct 16, 2009, 4:49 AM
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Oct 28, 2009, 8:52 PM
My predictions for this one seem to be coming true...

Astonished by a Tour of Brooklyn Bridge Park

by Dennis Holt

It would have been tempting to stand there last week and imagine Julie Andrews singing something like “The hills of Brooklyn are alive with music...,” but it was only later that I thought of that inanity.

But there is nothing inane about the hill I was on. It might turn out to be the grandest surprise of many being built and planned for Brooklyn Bridge Park.

It is 22 feet high, about in the middle of Pier 1, and a few weeks ago neither I nor anyone else could have been standing on it. And on the hill are granite stones that were part of a bridge from Queens to Roosevelt Island, shaped in the form of an amphitheater.

In fact, the new park will contain, if an early tour is any indication, a bunch of surprises. The first, universally noted, is the size of the space of the park. One is not prepared for the scope of this area, and it is not hyperbole to predict it will be one of the most fabulous parks in the world.

A 22-foot hill hardly sounds imposing, but this one seems far taller than its not quite eight yards. Everything is so flat around it that it seems to rise against the sky; the East River rips by you, not that far away, and there is a sense of grandeur about the whole thing.

When one looks intently at renderings of a planned park, such as this one, one can get a feeling of what to expect, but seeing the actual product is quite another experience.

One will see some of the finished product at Christmas time and in the spring. Piers 1, 5 and 6 should be largely completed by then — Pier 1 by itself would make a sizable waterfront park. Then funding decisions and work schedules will have to be made by governments for the other piers.

Another surprise, at least for those who have been around awhile, is in the pregnant stage. Few people ever “see” anymore the blockish former Cold Storage warehouses bordering Furman Street because they’ve been there so long. They won’t be for much longer.

The dismantling has begun, a very slow process because much of the wood and some of the bricks will be re-used in other parts of the park. But when the Cold Storage structures are gone, one standing on Furman will be able to see things no living person has ever seen.

(The “recycling” of old materials for the new park is the brainchild of Regina Myer, president of the Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corporation, the group building the park. She noted, during last week’s tour, that even some of the support steel for the former Pier 6 shed will be re-used somewhere in the park.)

A preview of Pier 6 at the foot of Atlantic Avenue hinted at what’s in store for the kids when that pier is completed. The new playground at the foot of Main Street in DUMBO, the other end of the park, is a grand place for kids, but cannot match what is being built at Pier 6.

Looking at some wooden barricades, Myer said they will form the largest “sand box” in Brooklyn. Part of that sand is at the foot of two of the longest slides I have ever seen. (I can see photographers perched on top taking pictures from the heights of these slides. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if, in time, more pictures are taken from various places in the park than from any other place in Brooklyn.)

Alongside the inlet separating Pier 6 from Pier 7 will be sets of swings in what one visitor has already said will be called Swing Valley.v One can foresee the need for park boats to ferry people from Pier 6 to the cove near Main Street in DUMBO, where Jane’s Carousel will be located. Pier 6 will also house one of the Water Taxi stations in the park.

Well, it’s coming, parts are already here, and there are a lot of people who witnessed the slow and ponderous progress of park planning who never thought it would ever come into existence.

See you on the hill.

Dec 7, 2009, 8:58 PM

Mayor Bloomberg intensifying bid to wrest control of Brooklyn Bridge Park from state

NewsCity Hall wants to run Brooklyn Bridge Park and make it 'world class.'

BY Mike Mclaughlin and and Erin Durkin
December 7th 2009, 4:00 AM

Mayor Bloomberg is ramping up his bid to wrest control of Brooklyn Bridge Park from the state with a plan to kick in $55 million - and delay controversial plans to build luxury housing.

The city would commit $55 million right away to finish building the troubled waterfront park, which faces a $120 million funding gap and an uncertain future.

City Hall would eventually come up with the rest of the cash to finish the park, sources said. The proposal is set to be unveiled at a community meeting tonight.

"It should be a world-class waterfront park," said Deputy Mayor Bob Lieber. "Right now, there's a tremendous amount of uncertainty about the park's future, and we're looking for a way to get it back on track."

Controversial plans to build 1,200 luxury condos in the park would be put on hold for a few years, sources said.

City officials would consider scrapping the condos altogether if they could find a way to replace the fees.

Condo opponents said the plan gave them hope the housing might be called off.

"A city takeover has great potential if there's money on the table [and] a meaningful discussion of alternatives to housing," said state Sen. Daniel Squadron, who opposes the condos.

The plan depends on striking a deal with Gov. Paterson.

Parkgoers could ride their bikes, walk dogs and take in waterfront views until 1 a.m. if the city took over, in place of a dusk closing time under state rules.

City officials would look to add a skating rink or a "bubble" for winter activities.

Dec 8, 2009, 11:46 PM

Bloomy: Housing in ‘park’ is still the plan


By Gersh Kuntzman and Andy Campbell
The Brooklyn Paper

Well, if you believe the Daily News, city officials were going to unveil their long-discussed “takeover” of the state’s controversial and delayed Brooklyn Bridge Park development project tonight — but Mayor Bloomberg himself nixed the notion that his administration would swoop in with new cash and a delay in the construction of luxury housing within the park’s footprint.

Bloomberg administration officials will be on hand at a meeting tonight at Long Island College Hospital — a meeting that the Daily News reported this morning was going to involve a city takeover of the park development project. But Mayor Bloomberg didn’t want to go that far this morning.

“The state’s run out of money, but we don’t want to stop development [of the park],” the mayor told The Brooklyn Paper at Monday morning’s a ground-breaking ceremony for McCarren Park Pool.

And, a mayoral aide clarified later, the mayor doesn’t want to stop development in the park, either.

“Right now, housing is still part of the park plan,” said mayoral spokesman Andrew Brent. “Unless another funding stream can be established, that’s the plan.”

The comments fly in the face of the Daily News story that the city would pony up $55 million immediately to finish building the troubled park — of which only a northern portion on Pier 1 near Old Fulton Street is slated for completion in early 2010. A second portion, atop Pier 6 at the foot of Atlantic Avenue, will be completed a few months later.

The vast majority of the remainder of the 85-acre park between those piers is off the table, pending additional funding. Also delayed are the luxury condo units and a hotel — the controversial commercial portion of the park that is supposed to fund the greenspace’s $15-million annual maintenance budget.

With a $120-million park construction gap, and the condo and hotel developments off the table for now, the Bloomberg administration could make some big news at the meeting tonight, which was set up by state Sen. Daniel Squadron, who has championed a tax hike plan to fund park maintenance that could dovetail with the mayor’s ambitions.

But not even Squadron was so optimistic for a big headline on BrooklynPaper.com on Tuesday morning.

“A city takeover has great potential — if there is money on the table, a meaningful discussion of alternatives to housing, parkland designation, and community input on governance and amenities,” Squadron said in a statement this morning. “As always, open dialogue is crucial.”

Dec 17, 2009, 1:46 AM

Brooklyn Bridge Park's Pier 1 Goes Green


Wednesday, December 16, 2009, by Joey

Live from a Lower Manhattan rooftop, Brooklyn Bridge Park's Pier 1! Those six acres of lush lawns
may be ringed with controversy—from the fate of the park's luxury housing to the lackluster
grand entrance—but come some undetermined date possibly in January 2010, will the frosty picnickers really care?


Dec 17, 2009, 10:51 PM

Brooklyn Bridge Park finally set to open

December 17, 2009

It’s taken so long to get off the ground that weary residents predicted it’d be a cold day in hell before they saw a Brooklyn Bridge Park.

They’ll have to settle for a freezing day in winter.

After more than two decades of planning, the first piece of the massive park planned along the Brooklyn Heights waterfront will finally open next month, officials announced today.

The small piece of what will be an 85-acre recreational and condominium development is located at Pier 1 off Fulton Landing and will feature grassy hills and an esplanade overlooking the East River and harbor.

Meanwhile, Empire-Fulton Ferry Park in DUMBO will be officially absorbed into the long-delayed park project beginning January 1, with the state turning control of the popular green space over to the state-city Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corp.

Although Empire-Fulton Ferry will keep its name temporarily, it will undergo major changes next year.

Jane Walentas, the wife of DUMBO developer David Walentas, is donating a 1920s carousel she restored. It will be housed in a glass pavilion designed by architect Jean Nouvel off the western shore of the park’s cove in front of the Tobacco Warehouse.

Jane Walentas is also donating $3.45 million for landscaping and other improvements in the park that include lighting to allow the tourist hotspot to remain open well past its current dusk closing time, extending the hours to 1 a.m., said project director Jennifer Klein.

Walentas would operate the ride through a nonprofit "Friends of Jane’s Carousel," and any profits from concessions would go towards park maintenance, Klein added. BBPDC board members would set prices and said they want to make it "affordable."

The upgrades at Empire-Fulton Ferry will begin in January and force parts of it to temporarily close.

But another portion of Brooklyn Bridge Park, at its southern edge by Atlantic Avenue, is set to open in the spring and feature a large playground, dog run, a 1,000-square-foot restaurant and roof deck, and three beach volleyball courts.

Also in the spring, the Pier 1 portion of the park will get food concessions.

The park is being built piecemeal because there is a more than $100 million funding gap in its $350 million budget. The city has offered to close $55 million of the shortfall in exchange for full control of the park, but the state is mum on whether it will accept the offer.

Brooklyn Bridge Park has been a political hot potato since project planners announced in December 2004 that more than 1,200 luxury condos would have to be included to raise enough money to offset the park's now-estimated $16.1 million annual maintenance costs.

Only one high-rise offering 440 luxury units has been built; another 780 units are on hold because of the slumping economy.

Dec 17, 2009, 11:12 PM
It seems to me that Brooklyn is becoming a very nice place to live, work, and play. Summertime should be fun there with the beach volleyball. It almost reminds me of the Chicago lake shore, minus the unswimmable water, and awesome bridge!

Dec 18, 2009, 12:04 PM
It seems to me that Brooklyn is becoming a very nice place to live, work, and play. Summertime should be fun there with the beach volleyball. It almost reminds me of the Chicago lake shore, minus the unswimmable water, and awesome bridge!

Brooklyn already has it's miles of beaches and summer fun, and was always a great place to live, work, and play. But the development of this park is another step in developing the underutilized waterfronts of the City of New York, and there are many. (see the East River thread). From the Hudson River Park, the the Harlem River shoreline and the shores of the Bronx, the City is returning the waterfront to New Yorkers and visitores alike who mainly see the city for it's inland attractions. The reality is it's a city of islands, and that's becoming more apparent every day.

Dec 18, 2009, 12:18 PM

Brooklyn Bridge Park: The new Central Park?

Credits: Roberts, Matthew,,freelance

Set to open in early-January, the first installment of Brooklyn Bridge Park ends 10 years of design, politics, construction and public participation. Opening in the dead of winter, Section 1A under the Brooklyn Bridge at Old Fulton St., marks the first phases of the most important public space to open up in the borough of Brooklyn in 120 years.

When fully completed, the $350 million, 85-acre, 1.3-mile park will extend the neighborhoods of Dumbo, Brooklyn Heights, and Cobble Hill, giving outdoor space to Brooklynites begging for more playgrounds.

There are hundreds of wooden pylons left from 150 years of maritime industrial history. These wooden pylons pay homage to the chronology of the site and preserving the current eco-system (fish and marine life) that have lived around those pylons for more than a century.

Boulders, called rip rap, have been placed in front of those pylons around a “Salt-water Marsh” and “Tidal Pool” (in section 1B set to open within a year) that will allow local students and visitors to observe mollusks and clams that will ultimately claim the area as their new home.

There is a man-made hill that rises more than 30 feet into the air separating two large lawns, one facing the Brooklyn Bridge and one facing the 900 acres of borrowed landscape in the New York Harbor. There is a small “vale” or valley that descends towards the water encircled by two small mounds that create a warm pocket against the northwest winter winds coming off the harbor.

When walking or sitting in this park, you’ll be constantly touching New York City history. Granite boulders used from the destruction of the Willis Avenue Bridge, the Roosevelt Island Bridge, and the East Side Access Project (tunnel’s being built for the Long Island Rail Road), have all been incorporated into the design. “Not only is the right sustainable move,” says Van Valkenburgh, “but it significantly reduces cost. Park building is as much about design as it is maintenance and renewal.”

“This park is possibly the most important public space in the last century anywhere in the country,” says NYC parks commissioner Adrien Benepe. “It fills a huge void for downtown Brooklyn and almost five local neighborhoods. Sitting on the New York harbor looking right at the lower Manhattan skyline, there might not be a more spectacular place for a new park in the world.”

"Landscape architecture should make places more powerful,” Matthew Urbanski, a principal at Van Valkenburgh’s firm, says. “We hope people rethink how to use public spaces after using this park."

For the past 10 years since the city and state began working with the public to turn the former Port Authority-owned industrial site under the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway, the site has remained behind a chain-linked fence. During that time period, Brooklyn-based landscape architects Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates (MVVA) has been busy transforming the former parking lots, warehouses, and waterfront piers to green space.

Merging land with water, the Brooklyn Bridge Park design pushes people to the waterfront, allowing visitors to touch the water or launch kayaks in four separate places. Creating hills, lawns, and curving pathways that elevate and descend like a game of Shoots and Ladders, MVVA uses every step up or down to enhance the skyline and 900 acres of harbor views. As an individual’s perspective shifts, the view of the city changes with it.

Make no mistake that this is a tough site. It gets very cold on the water in the winter. The site is thin. It was flat. The Brooklyn Queens Expressway rises 40 feet above creating noise and smog. “Sure, you could not make a better theatrical backdrop to this landscape,” says Urbanski. “That said, transforming a former freight terminal into a park meant it had to be violently changed without being totally destroyed first, which would have been way too expensive. It was very important for us to do something authentically Brooklyn here.”

Using six piers each about the size of Bryant Park to incorporate playing fields, tidal pools, water recapturing systems, and picnic areas, the park reuses sustainable materials such as wood, metals, and stone from the park site, the Willis Avenue Bridge, the Roosevelt Island Bridge, and the East Side Access project.

Adrian Benepe, NYC Parks Commissioner; Peter Davidson, Executive Director of Empire State Development and Regina Meyer, President of Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corporation stand on the hill in the nearly completed section of the new park.

For now, the park is a work in progress. Early visitors can watch construction of a new landmass that will be used for centuries to come. With much of the ideas for park design coming form community meetings, the park is for New Yorkers by New Yorkers. Even as the state and city raise funds to complete the project by 2013, the park could go down in history as the finest new urban space of the 21st Century.

Pictured above is a scale model of the park. "Landscape architecture should make places more powerful,” Matt Urbanski, a partner at Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates (MVVA) says. “We hope people rethink how to use public spaces after this park.”

I have no idea what one does after a project of this scale,” A. Paul Seck, who managed the park project for Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates (MVVA) says. “I just want to watch people’s faces as they walk the first hill and the city rises with them.”

Landscape architect Dorothy Tang makes small adjustments to a model of the planned Brooklyn Bridge Park, created by Michael Valkenburgh Associates. The model is approximatley 14 feet long.

Dec 22, 2009, 3:08 PM
thoth1618 (http://www.flickr.com/photos/thoth1618/4201436806/sizes/l/)


Dec 31, 2009, 2:47 AM

Empire-Fulton Ferry Park To Close Jan. 1
Will Soon Become Part Of Brooklyn Bridge Park

by Raanan Geberer

FULTON FERRY -- Empire-Fulton Ferry State Park, the small state waterfront park whose ownership was recently transferred from the state Parks Department to the Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corporation, will temporarily close as of Jan. 1, 2010.

When it reopens in spring 2011, it will be part of the expanding Brooklyn Bridge Park and will contain many improvements.

The park, established in 1979 on land that was donated by Con Edison, includes the 19th century Empire Stores and the equally venerable Tobacco Warehouse, both of them former industrial warehouses that time has made obsolete.

Theatrical performances and other events occasionally take place in the Tobacco Warehouse, whose roof has been destroyed, during the summer. The Empire Stores currently serve as the park’s administrative headquarters, and various uses have been proposed for them over the years.

The park also is known for its summer “Movies With a View” series, which this year will be held in the new Pier 1 portion of Brooklyn Bridge Park; for its views of the Manhattan skyline; and for its summer sculpture shows.

New features of the park will include:

• Jane’s Carousel, a gift of Jane and David Walentas. The elaborate, restored 1922 carousel once ran in an amusement park in Youngstown, Ohio, and was bought by the Walentases at an auction there during the 1980s. It is slated to be housed in a beautiful pavilion designed by Pritzker-Prize winning architect Jean Nouvel, making the carousel available for use in all seasons. Currently, the carousel is in a temporary location in DUMBO.

• Stormwater retention tanks to irrigate the park’s natural features.

• Park furnishings including railings, benches, picnic tables and bike racks.

• Lighting so that the park will be open after dark for the first time since its opening in 1979.

• Regrading the park to improve drainage.

The adjacent city-owned portion of Brooklyn Bridge Park, including the DUMBO playground, is scheduled to remain open during the renovation. The Pier 1 portion of the park is expected to open by the summer, and the Pier 6 portion at Atlantic Avenue is set to open before that.

Dec 31, 2009, 6:05 PM
Barry Yanowitz (http://www.flickr.com/photos/tomvu/4231717720/sizes/l/)


Jan 1, 2010, 1:35 PM
More from toth1618 (http://www.flickr.com/photos/thoth1618/4231942342/sizes/l/in/set-72157623109042100/)



Jan 4, 2010, 2:22 PM
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Jan 15, 2010, 2:21 AM

New waterfront restaurant coming to Brooklyn
City puts call out for eatery in Brooklyn Bridge Park

By Stephen Witt
January 13, 2010

Move over, River Cafe, there’s a new waterfront eatery with spectacular views coming to the borough.

The city’s Parks Department is seeking a restaurateur to operate an eatery overlooking the New York Harbor on Brooklyn Bridge Park’s Pier 6, this paper has learned.

The pier is located on the southern edge of the waterfront Park off Atlantic Avenue with breathtaking views of both lower Manhattan and New York Harbor.

“Parks recently sent a notice to (Community Board 2) that we are intending to issue an RFP (Request for Proposals) for a restaurant at Pier 6 in Brooklyn Bridge Park,” said Parks Department spokesperson Phil Abramson.

“The building is currently in construction and there is a plan for additional outdoor seating. The RFP is currently being developed but has not been finalized at this time,” he added.

The fact that the city is taking the lead in the RFP also is interesting because the state is the lead agency over the Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corporation (BBPDC), which is charged with building the 85-acre waterfront park.

However, the city and state have been in negotiations for several months to have the city take over the project.

BBPDC spokesperson Elizabeth Mitchell said the city will issue the RFP because Pier 6 is owned by the city and therefore has license to build a park on it and manage the construction and operations procurement process through its Franchise Concession Review Committee (FCRC).

“We are working together with the city on an RFP regarding the Pier 6 concession and expect to officially issue the RFP in the next few months,” she said.

While details of the restaurant specifications are not available yet, it would probably be similar to the River Cafe, 1 Water Street at the foot of the Brooklyn Bridge in DUMBO.

“This is the first we heard of it and it will be interesting to find out more about it,” said River Cafe General Manager Scott Stamford.

Jan 15, 2010, 3:41 AM
Design Trust for Public Space (http://www.flickr.com/photos/designtrustforpublicspace/sets/72157623085653575/)














Jan 22, 2010, 3:27 PM

Trolley trash! Workers tear up history near Brooklyn Bridge Park

Richard Mauro is annoyed that city workers dug up old trolley tracks in the historic Fulton Ferry Landing area — and then trashed them!

By Stephen Brown and Will Yakowicz
January 22, 2010

Fulton Ferry Landing preservationists are fuming that construction workers trashed a piece of history at the entrance to Brooklyn Bridge Park — set to open this month — that could have helped create a new trolley service.

Late last year, workers at the end of Old Fulton Street discovered the old rails dating back to the 1920s. But after consulting with archaeologists and city landmarks officials, they ripped up the tracks and threw them in the trash.

“No one wants to recognize that this was a transportation hub,” said Richard Mauro, who’s lived in the area for 40 years. “No matter how you look at it the trolley tracks are part of the street’s history. They should not have been removed.”

The tracks, which were covered by asphalt for decades, are a relic of a trolley service on Old Fulton Street that ran from the late 1800s to the 1930s. They were removed from the road as part of a larger sewer and water main reconstruction project throughout DUMBO.

City officials downplayed the tracks’ significance.

“They are not contributing features to the character of the Fulton Ferry historic district,” said Landmarks spokeswoman Elisabeth de Bourbon.

De Bourbon added that while DUMBO is noted for its tracks, Fulton Ferry Landing’s distinguishing characteristic was the ferry landing, not the old-school mode of transportation that rumbled away from it through DUMBO and points beyond.

Still, some insist that the old rails are even more valuable because they can be used to reinstate trolley service, an unrealized dream of transit advocates for years.

“When these people say the tracks are all finished and garbage, they don’t know what they are talking about,” said Bob Diamond, a Brooklyn legend ever since he discovered a long-abandoned trolley tunnel under Atlantic Avenue almost 30 years ago.

“The tracks must still have at least 25 years of use in them,” he said. “The asphalt is a pretty good preservative. The ones on Old Fulton Street being removed could be used to restore trolley service in Downtown Brooklyn.”

Recent talk of the elimination of the B25 bus line resurrected concerns of a lack of public transportation to bring people to the highly anticipated new park along the Brooklyn Heights waterfront. The bus line was saved, but the concern is still there.

Many have said that a trolley — that classic symbol of the borough itself — would be a convenient and stylish attraction that would deliver visitors from downtown to the hard-to-get-to park.

But an architect supervising construction in the area said the tracks in question were not part of a larger infrastructure that could have been of use for a new trolley.

“The tracks were just one section of disassociated tracks. They were removed and there hasn’t been evidence of any more,” said Alyssa Loorya, a head archeologist who surveyed the area for the city.

Then again, a Brooklyn Paper reporter visited the historic street multiple times and saw different tracks being removed over a span of a couple days. A construction worker who was cutting and ripping out the tracks said, “The tracks are all over the place. We have been removing big sections all day.”

Feb 9, 2010, 1:37 AM
Cool video...

These guys caught my attention the other day and I thought they might be amusing in a timelapse movie. The setting is Pier 1 of the new Brooklyn Bridge Park, which is not yet open - but the Birds seem to love it.

Feb 9, 2010, 3:06 AM
i dont think those light poles will ever grow on me. i always thought they were temporary... they look way too cheap and utilitarian.

Feb 9, 2010, 3:24 AM
^Yeah they belong in Jurassic Park or a Gitmo, not a brand new state-of-the-art city park.

Feb 11, 2010, 4:25 AM
While we're waiting for the first pier openings, guess there is a missed oppurtunity for sledding...;)


Feb 11, 2010, 4:29 AM
Urch (http://www.flickr.com/photos/urch/4342498224/sizes/o/)


Feb 11, 2010, 6:05 AM

Brooklyn Bridge Park delayed — again!

By Andy Campbell
February 10, 2010

The long-awaited first permanent section of Brooklyn Bridge Park has been delayed — again! — and will now open “in the spring,” Borough President Markowitz revealed in his “State of the Borough” address last Wednesday night.

And a week later, no one is willing to explain why.

Yes, a spokeswoman for the Empire State Development Corporation put out a vague statement that the park would open “this spring” because of “the low utility of outdoor play areas in winter months” — but that comment ignored more than a year of announcements that the long-delayed waterfront park and development would open this winter.

The Pier 1 recreation area at the foot of Old Fulton Street — the fruit of decades of planning and controversy — was originally scheduled to open in late 2009, but was pushed back until January.

The real reason for the latest delay is a topic of great speculation inside City Hall and Albany — with reports in several news outlets saying that the city and state remain mired in a squabble over the city’s desire to take over operation of the park. Mayor Bloomberg has promised $55 million to put construction on the fast track — but in exchange, he wants the city to have more control.

“It’s bureaucratic BS at its finest,” one frustrated official, unnamed, of course, told the Post. “Part of the problem is the state is leery about giving up control because it wants to be able to take credit when both projects are finally finished.

Mitchell would not address the subject. And in his speech last week at the Park Slope Armory, Markowitz acted as though no news was, indeed, good news.

“Piers 1 and 6 will open in spring,” he said. “Kudos, master planner [Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corporation President] Regina Myer.”

Pier 1 would be the first segment of a long-proposed 1.7-mile swath of greenspace and condos along the Brooklyn Heights and DUMBO waterfront. A delay in Pier 6, at the foot of Atlantic Avenue, had already been announced last year.

The remainder of the Brooklyn Bridge Park project, comprising four other piers and costing around $350 million total, has been put off the table until more funding can be lined up.

Feb 11, 2010, 10:19 PM
this building has already been destroyed?. when it will open the bottom of the bridge? this spring?
http://img214.imageshack.us/img214/9677/building.jpg (http://img214.imageshack.us/i/building.jpg/)

Feb 11, 2010, 10:27 PM
:previous: :previous:
Nope it wasn't and i don't think it will, and that building with no roof is for concerts,
but sorry i dont really have so much info about it.

Feb 12, 2010, 4:37 AM
this building has already been destroyed?. when it will open the bottom of the bridge? this spring?
http://img214.imageshack.us/img214/9677/building.jpg (http://img214.imageshack.us/i/building.jpg/)

May or may not be...


Jane’s Carousel To Be in Brooklyn Bridge Park

dumbonyc (http://www.flickr.com/photos/dumbonyc/2046045598/)
Brooklyn Bridge Park – The plan is to have Jane’s Carousel be on western shore of the park’s cove in front of the Tobacco Warehouse

December 18th, 2009

According to officials at the Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corporation and an article in the NY Post today, Jane’s Carousel will officially be part of the Brooklyn Bridge Park waterfront development. NY Post states:

“The directors of the Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corporation approved David and Jane Walentases’ gift of the so-called “Jane’s Carousel” and $3.45 million to landscape and operate it past the park’s closing time — and agreed to house it in a pavilion designed by French architect Jean Nouvel.”

Officials note that in addition to the restored 1922 carousel, the Walentases are also donating $3.45 million for improvements to the $350 million park, which include lighting and landscaping so that the carousel hours can be extended past the park’s closing time.


Feb 12, 2010, 4:16 PM
When were those pictures taken? I think that building is gone, no? I have a picture I'll post later today that shows that building directly under the bridge is gone. In the summer they had a flea market of sorts directly under there.

Feb 12, 2010, 11:04 PM
When were those pictures taken? I think that building is gone, no? I have a picture I'll post later today that shows that building directly under the bridge is gone. In the summer they had a flea market of sorts directly under there.

Yeah, it may be gone, that photo is just to show location. You can tell the photo is dated from the pier (pre demolition).

Feb 24, 2010, 1:53 AM

Civic groups fighting to keep 1920s carousel out of DUMBO park

February 22, 2010

A state plan to relocate an exquisitely restored 1920s carousel to popular waterfront parkland in DUMBO is infuriating local civic groups, who say it’s a bad fit that isn’t worth losing trees and lawn space over.

Jane Walentas, wife of DUMBO developer David Walentas, has agreed to relocate the carousel she bought and restored to the western shore of Empire State-Fulton Ferry Park’s cove in front of the historic Tobacco Warehouse. The carousel would be located within a massive glass pavilion designed by architect Jean Nouvel.

Doreen Gallo, executive director of the DUMBO Neighborhood Association said "We all love the carousel; we just think it belongs in another part of Brooklyn Bridge Park."

Empire State-Fulton Ferry Park, which will eventually be absorbed into the long-delayed Brooklyn Bridge Park project, saw part of its green space shut down last month as construction began to make room for the carousel.

Gallo also questioned why no public input was solicited before the state-city Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corp. in December agreed to accept the carousel and put it in the park. The carousel is not addressed in the park’s project plan.

Other groups putting pressure on elected officials to keep "Jane’s Carousel" out of the Empire State-Fulton Ferry include the Fulton Ferry Landing Association, Vinegar Hill Association and the Brooklyn Bridge Park Defense Fund (best known for fighting to keep condos out of the park, too).

Judi Francis, who heads the Park Defense Fund, said Nouvel’s designs are typically "modern," so it’s unlikely that his glass pavilion would fit in with the rest of the historic buildings along the DUMBO waterfront.

"It’s hard to guess what his design will be because no one will tell us about it," she said.

She said a better location would be on the Brooklyn Heights side of Brooklyn Bridge Park, such as Pier 6. Gallo suggested under the Manhattan Bridge.

Francis also said it’s a travesty that trees are being cut down to pave way for the carousel when other segments of Brooklyn Bridge Park have been delayed because of lack of financing and bickering between the city and state over control of the park.

Jane Walentas is also donating $3.45 million for landscaping and other improvements in the park that include lighting to allow the tourist hotspot to remain open well past its current dusk closing time, eventually extending the hours to 1 a.m.

Walentas would operate the ride through a nonprofit "Friends of Jane’s Carousel," and any profits from concessions would go towards park maintenance, officials have said.

Walentas could not be reached for comment.

Elizabeth Mitchell, a spokesperson for the Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corp. said the development corporation is "extremely grateful for this phenomenally generous gift by David and Jane Walentas and is certain the landmark 1922 Carousel will enhance the space and the experience for visitors to Brooklyn Bridge Park. We look forward to sharing further details regarding how this beautifully restored carousel will fit into the landscape along the East River."

Feb 26, 2010, 10:06 AM


sunpig (http://www.flickr.com/photos/sunpig/4388516100/sizes/l/)






Mar 9, 2010, 6:16 PM

The 100th Annual Meeting of the Brooklyn Heights Association on Feb. 23rd featured Michael Van Valkenburgh, a principal of the landscape design firm behind Brooklyn Bridge Park. Van Valkenburgh provided an informative inside look at the past, present and future of the magnificent sliver of Brooklyn shoreline that is finally coming to life as a world-class waterfront park. He discussed the thinking behind the design and the unique challenges posed along the way — topographical, infrastructural, governmental — and led a virtual walkthrough of those sections of the Park about to open, currently under construction and in development. And our video team was there to capture it all to share with a wider audience.





Mar 10, 2010, 1:10 PM

State Agrees to Let the City Finish Brooklyn Bridge Park

March 9, 2010

After months of wrangling, state officials have agreed to let New York City finish building — and paying for — Brooklyn Bridge Park, in the hope of speeding its progress.

A small portion of the park has been completed, but its opening and further construction — atop a ribbon of piers on the Brooklyn side of the East River — have been delayed while the state and city sparred over control. City officials worried that the state’s fiscal troubles could stymie the project, and state officials appeared reluctant to surrender bragging rights for the park.

Under the agreement, expected to be approved on Wednesday by the Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corporation, a state-city body, the Bloomberg administration would contribute $55 million to the $350 million project in the next fiscal year. That would allow stalled work to begin on Pier 2, designated for sports.

“Now is the time when we need to make sure the long-term funding for these types of projects is in place,” said Robert C. Lieber, deputy mayor for economic development. “So we’ll step up and fund it, and with that we want the responsibility for working with everyone and getting it done.”

Peter Davidson, the state’s chief development official and chairman of the park corporation, said that with major construction ready to begin, it made sense to put the city in charge. “You’d just rather have one government body at the point of making decisions,” he said.

City officials agreed to consider alternative ways to pay for operation and maintenance; the city’s financial contribution is contingent on the park’s being self-sustaining. Officials said they would explore adding a floating pool and skating rink. The land would be designated parkland.