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Brooklyn Bridge Park is being built

The Brooklyn Paper
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Brooklyn Bridge Park is finally being built.

The decades-old dream of a waterfront greenspace stretching from DUMBO to the foot of Atlantic Avenue — up to now, a dream deferred, thanks to a state requirement that the park be self-sustaining — is beginning to take shape.

A fully landscaped Pier 1 at the end of Old Fulton Street and a partial park on Pier 6 at the southern end will open just before the end of the year, said Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corporation President Regina Myer, who gave The Brooklyn Paper a tour of the construction site.

Myer said that the full work on Pier 1 and the partial work on Pier 6 would cost around $100 million and require about $4 million per year for maintenance. For now, $3 million per year is being contributed from the residents of the One Brooklyn Bridge Park condo, who make “payments in lieu of taxes” for park upkeep.

Myer said that the condo building has been making such payments since early 2008, so there is enough money in the bank to maintain the soon-to-open greenspace until additional residential, commercial and hotel properties join the funding stream, although it remains in doubt whether such sources of cash will materialize.

And vast portions of the park remain unfunded.

“We’re building what we can build and we believe that once it’s done, it will provide the impetus for the next step,” Myer said.

In addition to the work on Pier 1, Pier 6 is being readied as a “destination playground,” a dog run, volleyball nets and a food and beer concession.

And the current parking zone at the foot of Old Fulton Street will be transformed into a planted gateway to the park itself, a change that is not reflected on any current renderings.

“We have to do this so that people feel that they are entering a grand park,” Myer said.

“Right now, it’s a parking area, not a gateway.”

Walk on the mild side: A wide, bench-lined walkway will bring visitors into the park and towards the waterfront closest to the Brooklyn Bridge.

A new Great Lawn? The largest open space on Pier 1 will be a lawn with spectacular views.

Brooklyn’s new front stoop? Granite recovered from other city construction sites form a one-story-high set of stairs right up against the East River, providing a stoop-like gathering point. Hopefully, stoop-drinking tickets won’t be issued.

Take me to the riverPart of Pier 1 has been removed to create a tidal basin, much like at the neighboring city park on Main Street in DUMBO, where people can actually get down to the water itself.

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Reader Feedback

David from Dumbo says:
Oh. So suddenly the 'park' isn't so ironic any more. The park is just not as fun without the quote marks....
Aug. 19, 2009, 1:48 pm
Django from Yes says:
That Brooklyn Heights Blog has been covering the progress of this wonderful park for several months now. It's gonna be great!
Aug. 19, 2009, 2:53 pm
Publius from Bklyn Heights says:
So he gets a site tour and all of a sudden the quote marks come off of "Park." I suppose Gersh is entitled to change his opinion at his whim.

Maybe next Gersh will change his mind on Dock Street/Dumbo.

A boy is entitled to change his mind!
Aug. 19, 2009, 4:58 pm
Pacholo from Red Hook says:
This park is not what New Yorkers want for their recreation. How long before it becomes a dogrun?
Correct if I'm wrong.
Aug. 19, 2009, 7:02 pm
nicky from heights says:
No doubt Regina Meyer was charming to you-but the funding scheme for the park is as dead as the luxery housing market it was foolishly built upon. Lets hear some real alternatives for a real park (not a Battery Park City type Development).Daniel Squadron's plan deserves consideration. This is a serious poposal despite the critic in the Heights Press who is trashing it but won't reveal his name
Aug. 19, 2009, 8:19 pm
Eric McClure from Park Slope says:
For the umpteenth time, why do parks have to be "self-sustaining" when basketball arenas don't?

Put the quotes back around this "park," Gersh.
Aug. 20, 2009, 9:48 am
jeffrey from DUMBO says:
How about a parking structure run by the Parks department. the cost of the structure could be borrowed from the city and paid back, with interest, from the guaranteed parking revenue. Once the structure is built muni-meters will do their job and with tv security the whole structure can be run by 2 or 3 attendants per shift. I would be happy to explain exactly how this will work. Real money for the Parks department from a service needed by the public. Call me, Eric has my number, so do you Mr. Editor.
Aug. 20, 2009, 8:25 pm
Ben from Cobble Hill says:
Why do we need this much park down there at the tax payer's expense? This rest of the Park plan is unfunded and maintenance uncertain. With the addition of Piers 1 and 6 to the Dumbo section, Governor's Island now open and 3 min. away from Atlantic Ave. next year and the vast Red Hook Park a short distance by bus or bike, it's time to re-envision the middle part (Piers 2-5). ENOUGH PARK ALREADY and ditch the housing- that's a no-brainer. Let's build up a new main street down there and catalyse small business incubation for a fraction of the cost while contributing to the economy- including LOCAL mom and pop retailers and restaurants , greenmarkets, artists and craft sudios, light manufacturers, etc. It will be a tourist and local economic development magnet, given the prime location. We need some sensible and visionary elected officials and community leaders to work on plan B now.
Aug. 26, 2009, 1:05 pm

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