Funding Approved for Pier 42 and East River Waterfront

A rendering of one proposal for Pier 42 along the East River.

Two major projects along the East River waterfront moved one step closer to reality this morning, when the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation voted officially to fund them.

As we’ve been expecting, the redevelopment of Pier 42 was allotted $14 million, while another $1.9 million was tagged for the completion of the East River Waterfront Park.

Both projects have been championed  by state Sen. Daniel Squadron and U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer, who announced last fall that they had secured a promise of the funding. Today’s vote made it official and set the stage for the planning process to formally begin; a public meeting is scheduled for next month.

“This funding will be a step toward the world-class waterfront and open space we’ve long fought for, while continuing the revitalization of Lower Manhattan,” Squadron said in a prepared statement after the vote. “By connecting Lower Manhattan’s waterfront parks, it will create a ‘continuous green ribbon’ and move us a big step closer to a Harbor Park – a central park for the center of our city.”

Part of the Pier 42 money will be used to remove an abandoned shed to make room for more public space, and to stabilize the pier, which is just south of Montgomery Street. The entire Pier 42 park project is expected to take about five years and cost more than $40 million. This initial funding comes from a pot of money set aside for economic recovery after Sept. 11.

“These federal funds were always meant to ensure that lower Manhattan continues to be a desirous place for New Yorkers to live and work, and the redevelopment of Pier 42 is a key piece of that effort,” Schumer said in a statement after the vote.

The next step in the process is a community dialogue, which kicks off with a public meeting on Feb. 22 hosted by Community Board 3, the parks department, and Squadron’s office. It takes place at 7 p.m. at the BRC Senior Services Center, 30 Delancey St. (b/w Chrystie and Forsyth).

Read more comments from elected officials and details of the project here.