Early this year, the Public Design Commission and Community Board 3 approved a conceptual master plan for a park at Pier 42. Mathews Nielsen, the firm hired to design the 8-acrre recreational space near Montgomery Street will return to CB3’s parks committee October 21 to present a preliminary plan for phase 1 of the project.
The $94 million initiative will create active and passive recreational facilities, a marine habitat, waterfront marshes, a water ecology educational center and a dock for small boats. Three years ago, U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer and State Sen. Daniel Squadron helped secure $16 million in 9/11 recovery funds for the first phase. It entails the dismantling of the old 600 foot shed once used to store bananas and the development of an interim park.
Last week, in an appearance fore the community board, Squadron expressed the hope that more money can be found for the project. Earlier this year, the federal government awarded the Lower East Side $335 million for a bridging berm, a protective barrier stretching from East 23rd Street to the area just above Pier 42. Squadron suggested that the post-Hurricane Sandy initiative – called Rebuild by Design – could bolster efforts to find the necessary money for the pier revamp.
This afternoon, CB3 Chairperson Gigi Li told us Rebuild by Design officials will also be briefing the board. The city , she said, is awaiting word from the federal government before deciding how to move forward with the bridging berm plan. The $335 million was awarded through a design competition sponsored by the Department of Housing and Urban Development.
This past summer, Parks Department officials told The Lo-Down they expected to begin phase 1 at Pier 42 by 2016.