October 19, 2016
NEW YORK––The de Blasio Administration and the Brooklyn Bridge Park today broke ground on Pier 3, the final pier to be converted to parkland at the 85-acre park. Expected to be completed in Spring 2018, the five-acre Pier 3 will include a central lawn, a flexible hardscape area for recreation and programming, and a play labyrinth featuring historic elements salvaged from the Park for visitors of all ages. Capital funding for the $26 million pier was included in Mayor Bill de Blasio’s FY17 budget. As with the entire Brooklyn Bridge Park project, Pier 3 was designed by Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates.
“This park has become the front lawn of Brooklyn. And Pier 3 will add more space for kids to play and for families to enjoy this incredible place. We have made building Brooklyn Bridge Park and securing it for the long-term a major priority, and we are thrilled to support this latest addition,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio.
“This is truly a park for everyone. There is no place in the world that has the breathtaking views, the dynamic open spaces and the incredible cultural institutions we’ve brought together here. By breaking ground on Pier 3, we are making Brooklyn Bridge Park even bigger and better,” said Deputy Mayor Alicia Glen, Chair of the Brooklyn Bridge Park Corporation.
“Breaking ground on Pier 3 marks a landmark achievement: the final major stage of construction to get underway at Brooklyn Bridge Park," said Regina Myer, President of Brooklyn Bridge Park. "A decade ago, our 85 acres were still a barren stretch of industrial wasteland. Today, 330,000 visitors enjoy our waterfront every week and now they’ll have Pier 3 - a beautiful central lawn and a fabulous play space that will transform this five acre concrete platform. I couldn’t be prouder of what we’ve achieved here. Thanks to the Mayor, our local electeds and our community partners, we have now built the park and secured its future success."
Today’s groundbreaking also marks the final initiative of outgoing BBP President Regina Myer’s tenure. During her nine years overseeing every aspect of the Park project, Myer oversaw a dramatic transformation as 1.5 miles of industrial waterfront was completely revitalized through an historic public investment into one of the largest public works in the City. Today, BBP is one New York City’s most popular destinations and one of the most lauded urban parks across the globe. After taking the helm before any of its major construction began, Myer leaves with 90 percent of the Park complete or under construction. Piers 1, 2, 5, 6, the Main Street and John Street parks and a revamped Empire Fulton Ferry with Jane’s Carousel all were designed, built and opened under her leadership. Since BBP started tracking weekly summer usership in 2012, that number has increased from 146,000 to more than 330,000 in 2016.
"Brooklyn Bridge Park is an incredible source of relaxation, recreation, and inspiration for our borough, and it is exciting to see the next chapter in its evolution be written on Pier 3,” said Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams. “Hundreds of thousands of families from near and far alike will enjoy this welcome addition of open space that will further elevate the unparalleled experience that is Brooklyn's waterfront."
“Brooklyn Bridge Park is rapidly becoming an institution for our entire City with a host of recreational benefits for local residents and visitors alike,” said Congresswoman Nydia M. Velázquez. “Work on the final remaining pier in Brooklyn Bridge Park constitutes another important milestone in connecting New Yorkers with the waterfront. The park is an attraction supporting local businesses, while giving working families a place to play, relax and spend time together. I’d also like to recognize Regina Myer for her many years shepherding the park from plan to reality.”
“Today's groundbreaking brings Brooklyn Bridge Park its own great lawn, which is appropriate for the Central Park for the center of our city -- the Harbor Park,” said State Senator Daniel Squadron. “I'm proud to have worked with the Park and community to help bring such an incredible park to life. Thank you to Regina Myer for bringing so much of the park to fruition, as well as the Park Corporation, Deputy Mayor Glen, the Conservancy, and my colleagues.”
Assembly Member Joanne Simon said, “I look forward to the opening of Pier 3, as this brings us even closer to finishing the park. When open, Pier 3 will be a great addition to our wonderful park. I want to thank Regina Myer, and the rest of Brooklyn Bridge Park for all of their hard work in getting this project off the ground.”
"I thank Regina for her many years of service to Brooklyn Bridge Park – her mark will forever be felt," said Council Member Stephen Levin. "She leaves us now setting in motion the completion of one of the final, much anticipated open spaces at BBP. I, along with the community, welcome what will become the newest addition of world class parkland in Brooklyn for all to enjoy."
"This is an exciting day as we break ground on the last of Brooklyn Bridge Park's great piers and advance toward the completion of the entire 85 acre park," said Nancy Webster, Executive Director of the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy. "Today is also memorable as we salute outgoing Brooklyn Bridge Park President Regina Myer. The Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy conveys our heartfelt thanks to Regina for building what we always hoped would be, and what has certainly become, one of the world’s great parks."
In building the Park, Myer successfully executed BBP’s financial plan, managing the development of its designated revenue-generating sites and securing the long-term financial stability of the Park, including funding for its maritime infrastructure like the two thousand piles that hold up Pier 3.
Finally, Myer enriched the Park experience by forging partnerships with some of the city’s leading cultural institutions, including the Public Art Fund, St. Ann’s Warehouse - which opened at BBP’s Tobacco Warehouse last year - the Brooklyn Historical Society, which will open a waterfront-themed branch at Empire Stores next year, and the Brooklyn Children’s Museum, which opened its Spark annex in the Park last weekend.
ABOUT BROOKLYN BRIDGE PARK
Brooklyn Bridge Park is the not-for-profit entity responsible for the planning, construction, maintenance and operation of Brooklyn Bridge Park, an 85-acre sustainable waterfront park spanning 1.3 miles along Brooklyn’s East River shoreline. As steward of the park, BBP has transformed this previously deteriorated stretch of waterfront into a world-class park where the public can gather, play, relax and enjoy sweeping views of New York Harbor. The Park was designed by the award-winning firm of Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates, Inc. and features expansive lawns, rolling hills, waterfront promenades, innovative playgrounds, a greenway, sports facilities and the popular Jane’s Carousel. BBP serves thousands of people on any given seasonal day, who come to picnic, walk their dog, play soccer, jog, bike or roller skate. Brooklyn Bridge Park is a signature public investment for the 21st Century and will be an enduring legacy for the communities, elected officials and public servants who made it happen. For more information, please visit www.brooklynbridgepark.org.