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ZippyTheChimp
May 27th, 2003, 09:31 PM
Article from Downtown Express
http://www.downtownexpress.com/DE_05/b.p.c.amoves.html

B.P.C.A. moves closer to buying Pier A

By Jane Flanagan

The takeover of Pier A by the Battery Park City Authority moved one step closer to reality this week after Community Board 1 gave the idea unanimous support.

The partially-renovated Pier A has been mired for years in a legal battle between the developer of a $30 million renovation and the city over funding. While the decade-long battle waged on, the landmark 1880s building, located in a prime spot in Battery Park, sat empty.

A sale to the authority, a state-controlled agency, will help the city close its budget deficit.

It’s not clear what obstacles the lawsuit between the city and the developer, Wings Point Associates, poses to the authority’s wish to takeover the property, but Carey does not seem worried. He said that if the authority buys Pier A, renovation would begin quickly.

“We’ll get it done,” he said.

The authority came before the full board Tuesday seeking a green light for its plan to go before the New York State legislature for a $150 million increase in its budget cap so it can issue a bond to finance the deal. In addition to Pier A, the authority also hopes to buy the strip of land that is part of the Hudson River Park and runs contiguously along its eastern border, from just north of Chambers Street to Battery Park.

The authority’s Michael Ketring said the Hudson Park land was included in the deal to insure the B.P.C.A. received equal value. He said by law, the Hudson River Park Trust would maintain ultimate jurisdiction over the land, but the authority would continue to oversee the area adjacent to West St., including the west end of the ballfields and the P.S./I.S. 89 yard.

The original renovation of Pier A by Wings Point, a Long Island Developer, called for a restaurant, catering hall and retail shops. Recently, however, the National Parks Service has expressed interest in using the first floor as a waiting area and security screening for Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island ferry passengers.

Carey appears to be supportive of the Parks Service plan.

“It makes a lot of sense,” he said, but added that it was too soon for him to be making any commitments.

Other potential features of the renovated building would be a second floor visitor’s center for New York State Parks, he said. Another proposed nearby feature is a replica of an historic canal boat that would be anchored in the narrow strip of water between Wagner Park and Pier A. It would serve as a stationary museum and run by the Ernie Canal Heritage Commission. Visitors would learn about the historic role these boats played in transporting goods between New York City and upstate.

All this still leaves room leftover for retail or professional offices, and Carey said either are possible.

At the moment, the building is only 30 percent renovated, and he expects an additional $16 million will be required to fix the structure alone. That does not include the fixtures and other needs of specific tenants.

Carey said the authority hopes to come before the state legislature as soon as possible and to float the bonds in the fall. A design would be drawn up soon after and bids sent out. As for how long it would be before the first visitor set foot in a fully renovated Pier A, Carey said he couldn’t say. Referring to the fact that the pier has been vacant at least three decades, for one reason or another, he said, “It’ll take a lot less than 30 years. I can tell you that.”

http://www.downtownexpress.com/DE_05/pier.jpg
Downtown Express photo by Lorenzo Ciniglio

BrooklynRider
May 28th, 2003, 10:21 AM
Use by the National Park Service for ferry waiting room makes a lot of sense. *It really is a no-brainer.

ZippyTheChimp
March 4th, 2005, 10:48 PM
Pier A Progress Perennially delayed project back on track

http://www.downtownexpress.com/de_95/piera.gif

By Ronda Kaysen

Pier A in Battery Park may finally get a long awaited multi-million dollar restoration now that the city and the pier’s leaseholders are close to hammering out an agreement, bringing nearly two decades of wrangling to a close.

The three-story pier was once a Victorian wonder in Battery Park that welcomed the likes of Amelia Earhart, the Queen of England and various heads of state. Today it is a dilapidated shell of a berth, hidden behind a chain link fence and shrouded in a thick layer of scaffolding. Soon, all that may change.

“How do I feel about this? I’ve been working on this for 16 years! I’m thrilled,” said Thomas Ickovic, one of the managing partners of Wings Point Associates, the leaseholder for the property.

In recent months, Wings Point settled lawsuits with the city and New York Waterway, which recently sold its Downtown commuter ferry routes to attorney William Wachtel, a Wings Point managing partner. With the legal issues resolved, Wings Point and the Economic Development Corporation, the landlord for the property, have reached an agreement in principle, according to a source at Wings Point who requested anonymity.

The National Park Service will, if the agreement is signed, have a permanent home for its Statue of Liberty security checkpoint, bringing an end to the temporary—and unsightly—gray tents that have marred the Battery Park promenade since Liberty Island reopened with tighter security in December 2001.

“We’re just so excited to have anything happening there; it means we have our promenade open to the public again,” said Warrie Price, president of the Battery Conservancy. “We want [the promenade] back — that great experience of coming to Castle Clinton and having that doorway framing the harbor for you is your first major impression of looking out at those 11,000 acres of water. That plaza has got to be open space for the people Downtown.”

Opened to the public for the first time in its history, a portion of Pier A’s sweeping ground floor will be used for Park Service security, and Wings Point has strongly suggested that Statue of Liberty-bound visitors enter through a north pier entrance, with the north and west docks used for Circle Line ferries.

Today, the ground floor is little more than a construction site with hanging wires and plank and plywood floors. But its arched windows and open floor plan tell a different story. Built in 1886 for the now defunct Department of Docks and Ferries, the ground floor has an impressive bank of floor to ceiling arched windows, filling the dusty structure with light and breathtaking views of the New York Harbor. “They needed to read blue prints,” Ickovic said of the city workers. “They needed a building with extraordinary light.” The pier was also used as an observation tower for the city’s harbor police and most recently the marine division of the city’s fire department.

Federal legislation signed by President George W. Bush last December gave the Park Service the authority to secure a permanent location for its security facilities.

Wings Point, which signed a lease for the property in 1989, plans to donate the space to the Park Service, according to James Pepper, superintendent of national parks in Manhattan. Without a signed and sealed agreement, however, Pepper, is wary of premature celebrations.

“We think it’s an exciting opportunity, and we’re looking at it very closely,” Pepper said. “But we haven’t actually signed any agreements at this stage.”

The Economic Development Corporation, which controls the property, shares the Park Service’s sentiment. “We have been working closely with Wings Point and the National Park Service and are very happy to have the project moving again,” Janel Patterson, an E.D.C. spokesperson said. However, “There are still some issues to be resolved but we hope they’ll be worked out in the near future.”

Wings Point plans to transform the top floor of the 32,000 sq. ft. structure into a “tavern-on-the-water” type events-catering hall and use the south pier for its own harbor tours, water taxi service to South Street Seaport and morning and evening New York Waterway commuter ferries, Ickovic said. The second floor and portions of the ground floor will be used for a harbor museum experience and other facilities.

The agreement should be finalized by the middle of March with work beginning immediately thereafter, said a source at Wings Point, who requested anonymity because the final deal has not yet been signed. The pier is expected to be open to the public this year. “Certainly by the early fall, if not sooner, the pier will be a vibrant hall for millions of Americans to see the Statue of Liberty,” the source said. “The key is for all parties to get their arms around [the agreement.]”

Wings Point filed permits with the city’s Dept. of Buildings recently so it can begin work.

“This building has so much history, I am so stoked to be a part of this project,” said Seth Goldstein, project coordinator for the renovation. “I can’t wait to get started on this.”

The massive loading barge that the Port Authority placed at the edge of the dock after September 11, 2001 for displaced PATH commuters will not return. Ickovic said the restored pier will not include a barge anywhere near that size and will have what he called a small floater with room for a few boats.

Pier A was built immediately after work was finished on the Brooklyn Bridge and with the same equipment. Restoring it requires replacing the original detailed metal façade and fixtures that are no longer produced in this country. The machinery that casted the pressed metal detailing no longer exists.

“For us to replicate it is much more work than it was to originally build it,” Ickovic said.

The original clock keeps perfect ship time in a tower at the western end of the pier, but was badly damaged with time and needed its gears completely recast. “That was a very expensive restoration job,” Ickovic said.

A historic renovation has its perks, however. Wings Point qualifies for the Historic Preservation Tax Credit program, which means the company will receive a 20 percent tax credit for the $40 million project, Ickovic said. In 1997, the company also received an $8 million loan from the U.S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development, which will also be applied towards the restoration costs.

Ickovic is thrilled to see the pier, which juts 300 feet out into the water and is the closest site on Manhattan to the Statue of Liberty, restored. “It’s really one of the most significant maritime buildings in New York City. Period.”

Ronda@DowntownExpress.com (Ronda@DowntownExpress.com)

ZippyTheChimp
June 1st, 2005, 06:56 PM
Still another idea for Pier A

Scanned from Tribeca Trib

http://img114.echo.cx/img114/3817/pieratitanic5ah.th.jpg (http://img114.echo.cx/my.php?image=pieratitanic5ah.jpg)

Artificial iceberg?

TLOZ Link5
June 3rd, 2005, 04:59 PM
When I was in Cincinnati a few years ago, there was an exhibition in Union Terminal about the Titanic. My dad, sister and I went on the recommendation of our cousins. It was extremely well-done: there were life-size mockups of a first-class stateroom and a third-class berth, a scale model of the grand staircase, and an "artificial iceberg." Well, it was really a thick vertical slab of ice attached to the wall and cut into an angular shape, but it was touchable -- not just cold, but really, really hard, like a diamond. So you got a sense of how a giant chunk of glacier could inflict so much damage to a supposedly unsinkable ship.

Every visitor got a card with a passenger or crewmember's name, with their class or occupation, at the beginning of the exhibition, and at the end there was a list of all the people on board, with the survivors' names italicized. All three of us died, apparently. It didn't particularly help that I was a stoker :-\

So yeah. If the temporary exhibition in Cincy is anything to go by, a permanent Titanic museum in New York would be nothing short of excellent.

Canadian
January 21st, 2006, 06:00 PM
Is Pier A open to visitors? How do I get there? Thanks

lofter1
January 21st, 2006, 06:39 PM
Nope -- Pier A has been closed for renovation for 5+ years -- unfortunately it's been mired in contractor BS (lawsuits, potential graft + corrupt contracts).

The word is that MAYBE renovation will start moving forward again sometime in this century, but I'm not counting on it.

To find it: get yourself to Battery Park and walk to the far north west corner -- its the great old building wrapped in scaffolding advertising and fenced off from access.

You can get a good view of it from the outlook above the restaurants in Wagner Park, just a short walk to the NW.

Canadian
January 22nd, 2006, 06:24 AM
Thanks for the info. Sorry to hear about the BS (Builders' Suits)(LOL)

lofter1
January 22nd, 2006, 09:11 AM
Some more info:

http://www.wirednewyork.com/forum/showpost.php?p=69975&postcount=53

and

http://www.downtownexpress.com/de_95/pieraprogress.html

Pier A Progress Perennially delayed project back on track

http://www.downtownexpress.com/de_95/piera.gif
Downtown Express photos by Jennifer Weisbord

Pier A’s original design included a large number of vaulted windows to provide light
for city workers in a time before electricity.

Downtown Express
Ronda Kaysen
March 2005

Pier A in Battery Park may finally get a long awaited multi-million dollar restoration now that the city and the pier’s leaseholders are close to hammering out an agreement, bringing nearly two decades of wrangling to a close.

The three-story pier was once a Victorian wonder in Battery Park that welcomed the likes of Amelia Earhart, the Queen of England and various heads of state. Today it is a dilapidated shell of a berth, hidden behind a chain link fence and shrouded in a thick layer of scaffolding. Soon, all that may change.

“How do I feel about this? I’ve been working on this for 16 years! I’m thrilled,” said Thomas Ickovic, one of the managing partners of Wings Point Associates, the leaseholder for the property.

In recent months, Wings Point settled lawsuits with the city and New York Waterway, which recently sold its Downtown commuter ferry routes to attorney William Wachtel, a Wings Point managing partner. With the legal issues resolved, Wings Point and the Economic Development Corporation, the landlord for the property, have reached an agreement in principle, according to a source at Wings Point who requested anonymity.

The National Park Service will, if the agreement is signed, have a permanent home for its Statue of Liberty security checkpoint, bringing an end to the temporary—and unsightly—gray tents that have marred the Battery Park promenade since Liberty Island reopened with tighter security in December 2001.

“We’re just so excited to have anything happening there; it means we have our promenade open to the public again,” said Warrie Price, president of the Battery Conservancy. “We want [the promenade] back — that great experience of coming to Castle Clinton and having that doorway framing the harbor for you is your first major impression of looking out at those 11,000 acres of water. That plaza has got to be open space for the people Downtown.”

Opened to the public for the first time in its history, a portion of Pier A’s sweeping ground floor will be used for Park Service security, and Wings Point has strongly suggested that Statue of Liberty-bound visitors enter through a north pier entrance, with the north and west docks used for Circle Line ferries.

Today, the ground floor is little more than a construction site with hanging wires and plank and plywood floors. But its arched windows and open floor plan tell a different story. Built in 1886 for the now defunct Department of Docks and Ferries, the ground floor has an impressive bank of floor to ceiling arched windows, filling the dusty structure with light and breathtaking views of the New York Harbor. “They needed to read blue prints,” Ickovic said of the city workers. “They needed a building with extraordinary light.” The pier was also used as an observation tower for the city’s harbor police and most recently the marine division of the city’s fire department.

Federal legislation signed by President George W. Bush last December gave the Park Service the authority to secure a permanent location for its security facilities.

Wings Point, which signed a lease for the property in 1989, plans to donate the space to the Park Service, according to James Pepper, superintendent of national parks in Manhattan. Without a signed and sealed agreement, however, Pepper, is wary of premature celebrations.

“We think it’s an exciting opportunity, and we’re looking at it very closely,” Pepper said. “But we haven’t actually signed any agreements at this stage.”

The Economic Development Corporation, which controls the property, shares the Park Service’s sentiment. “We have been working closely with Wings Point and the National Park Service and are very happy to have the project moving again,” Janel Patterson, an E.D.C. spokesperson said. However, “There are still some issues to be resolved but we hope they’ll be worked out in the near future.”

Wings Point plans to transform the top floor of the 32,000 sq. ft. structure into a “tavern-on-the-water” type events-catering hall and use the south pier for its own harbor tours, water taxi service to South Street Seaport and morning and evening New York Waterway commuter ferries, Ickovic said. The second floor and portions of the ground floor will be used for a harbor museum experience and other facilities.

The agreement should be finalized by the middle of March with work beginning immediately thereafter, said a source at Wings Point, who requested anonymity because the final deal has not yet been signed. The pier is expected to be open to the public this year. “Certainly by the early fall, if not sooner, the pier will be a vibrant hall for millions of Americans to see the Statue of Liberty,” the source said. “The key is for all parties to get their arms around [the agreement.]”

Wings Point filed permits with the city’s Dept. of Buildings recently so it can begin work.
“This building has so much history, I am so stoked to be a part of this project,” said Seth Goldstein, project coordinator for the renovation. “I can’t wait to get started on this.”
The massive loading barge that the Port Authority placed at the edge of the dock after September 11, 2001 for displaced PATH commuters will not return. Ickovic said the restored pier will not include a barge anywhere near that size and will have what he called a small floater with room for a few boats.

Pier A was built immediately after work was finished on the Brooklyn Bridge and with the same equipment. Restoring it requires replacing the original detailed metal façade and fixtures that are no longer produced in this country. The machinery that casted the pressed metal detailing no longer exists.

“For us to replicate it is much more work than it was to originally build it,” Ickovic said.
The original clock keeps perfect ship time in a tower at the western end of the pier, but was badly damaged with time and needed its gears completely recast. “That was a very expensive restoration job,” Ickovic said.

A historic renovation has its perks, however. Wings Point qualifies for the Historic Preservation Tax Credit program, which means the company will receive a 20 percent tax credit for the $40 million project, Ickovic said. In 1997, the company also received an $8 million loan from the U.S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development, which will also be applied towards the restoration costs.

Ickovic is thrilled to see the pier, which juts 300 feet out into the water and is the closest site on Manhattan to the Statue of Liberty, restored. “It’s really one of the most significant maritime buildings in New York City. Period.”


Downtown Express is published by
Community Media LLC.

infoshare
January 22nd, 2006, 10:00 AM
Is Pier A open to visitors? How do I get there? Thanks
You picked a good subject Canadian: I have been gawking in amazement at the "work in progress" for what seems to be about 5-8 years now.
Directions: go to south street (see images) and walk towards the waterfront - however, you can only view it from a distance: Work in Progress.

BPC
April 6th, 2006, 09:23 AM
same old story ...

April 6, 2006
Plans for Pier Bogged Down in a Dispute With the City
By PATRICK McGEEHAN

For nearly two decades, city officials have hoped to see Pier A, a historic landmark at the northern edge of Battery Park, revived as a tourist attraction on the downtown waterfront. But the latest attempt to make commercial use of the 120-year-old pier is bogging down in a dispute between the city and an ambitious ferry operator.

The operator, New York Waterway Tours, planned to start offering hourly harbor cruises from the pier next week. But the city's Economic Development Corporation has refused to grant permission to reopen the pier, which is leased to a company controlled by one of the owners of the tour-boat operator.

The man behind the plan for the harbor cruises is William B. Wachtel, a Manhattan lawyer with designs on reviving the city-owned Pier A as a transportation center. He hopes it will serve as a hub for commuters traveling to and from New Jersey as well as tourists to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island.

His efforts are being closely watched by competitors in the city's small but contentious ferry industry.

"Circle Line continues to support efforts to upgrade Pier A, and though we have seen activity of a sightseeing business, we are not aware that it has received approval from appropriate agencies," said J. B. Meyer, the president of Circle Line Harbor Cruises, another tour operator.

Mr. Wachtel controls Wings Point Associates, which is leasing the pier, and the BillyBey Ferry Company, which he created a year ago to bail out the struggling operator of the Waterway ferries. BillyBey owns half of the Waterway fleet and half of an excursion business, New York Waterway Tours.

Last week, workers for the tour company started gearing up to start hourly cruises of the harbor from the pier. A schedule for the cruises, beginning April 14, appeared on Waterway's Web site and a trailer that would serve as a ticket office appeared at the edge of Battery Park. Other boat operators reported seeing boats making test runs from the pier. A spokesman for the United States Coast Guard, Petty Officer Mike Lutz, said yesterday that the Coast Guard had granted a permit to Waterway for excursion cruises to operate from Pier A beginning around April 14.

But there is a hitch: Wings Point and the city have been tied up in litigation over the progress of the renovation of Pier A for years and officials of the development corporation are not willing to cooperate until the lawsuits are settled. Janel Patterson, a spokeswoman for the development corporation, said this week that "we are in workout negotiations with the leaseholder" and added that "we also advised them that it's premature for them to advertise or promote ferry service from Pier A." But two days later, Waterway was still advertising that cruises would begin on April 14.

Pat Smith, a spokesman for New York Waterway Tours and its owners, declined to say whether the company would run the tours without the city's consent. "A final decision has not been made" about operating sightseeing boats or commuter ferries from the pier, he said.

The dispute with the city has also threatened Mr. Wachtel's plan to run commuters to and from the pier. Waterway filed an application with the Army Corps of Engineers last year seeking permission to anchor barges alongside the pier so that ferries could dock perpendicular to it.

That proposal drew objections from other boat operators, including officials of New York Water Taxi and the Circle Line company that ferries tourists between Battery Park and the Statue of Liberty. Water Taxi, controlled by Douglas Durst, the Manhattan property developer, is Waterway's closest competitor in the harbor.

But Circle Line has the most to lose if Mr. Wachtel succeeds. Wings Point has been negotiating with the National Park Service to move the ticketing and screening operations for Statue of Liberty ferry passengers to Pier A from Battery Park. Circle Line's longstanding contract to operate ferries to the statue and Ellis Island is scheduled to expire in less than a year and Mr. Wachtel has said he may bid for it.

lofter1
April 6th, 2006, 09:53 AM
Dag-nabbit ...

I was hoping for some GOOD news here!

Maybe this will force everybody involved to make a settlement :confused:

infoshare
April 6th, 2006, 09:56 AM
[i]same old story ...For nearly two decades, city officials have hoped to see Pier A, a historic landmark at the northern edge of Battery Park, revived as a tourist attraction on the downtown waterfront.

Thank you for bringing this attention BPC....if ever there was on un-official ombudsmen to report on the maladministration of this city.......it would be Wny forum.

I will go diggen for some news and links....thanks again BPC.

P.S. Given your location, bet you would like to see "something" happen here.

cheeers

BPC
April 6th, 2006, 10:40 AM
Yes. I have lived in the 'hood for 12 years, and I am tired of seeing this beautiful structure all boarded up, with nobody working on it. Any public use would be fine by me.

ZippyTheChimp
April 6th, 2006, 11:13 AM
Moving NPS operations for Statue of Liberty ticketing and security screening to Pier A makes the most sense. Or does the city plan to make the huge tent on the promenade a permanent feature?

lofter1
April 6th, 2006, 11:25 AM
I will go diggen for some news and links....
Be sure to wear your gloves and boots -- this one is a real cesspool.

Back in the summer of '01 I did some digging myself and started some email correspondence with various city officials -- the appearance was that there were dirty hands all over Pier A.

9/11 put an end to my investigation. Plus a computer crash in '04 caused me to lose all the info I had compiled :mad:

And here we are, 5 years later ...

BPC
April 6th, 2006, 12:46 PM
Moving NPS operations for Statue of Liberty ticketing and security screening to Pier A makes the most sense. Or does the city plan to make the huge tent on the promenade a permanent feature?

I don't think it is even a tent. If I recall correctly, I think it is one or more TRAILERS, which is even worse. It is a blight on the otherwise fantastic job the BP Trust has done restoring the park.

NYatKNIGHT
April 6th, 2006, 02:30 PM
Exactly. Besides, the trip to the Statue of Liberty should embark from a more historic structure, and get those long lines (and the sideshows that follow them) off the promenade.

infoshare
April 6th, 2006, 09:44 PM
Be sure to wear your gloves and boots -- this one is a real cesspool.And here we are, 5 years later ...

Thanks for the heads-up Lofter.....I will try to post any articles, links, photos that I come across; then post them here....I will not go too much out of my way in terms doing investigative journalism...........just call me the "accidental ombudsmen":rolleyes:

I have read a bit into the issue but do not understand what the frik its all about. My guess it will be sorted out by the time GZ is built - at least there is BPC, lovely waterfront park.

cheers

lofter1
April 7th, 2006, 02:11 AM
Mainly it is about contractors + developers who were "connected" --and governmental agencies that were dropping the ball / looking the other way.

It has now evolved into law suits that seemingly none of the parties want to see end up in court.

estryker
May 4th, 2006, 05:49 PM
Any news on this? Just wondering if Battery Park will be cleaned up (trailer/tents removed) in time for the big summer and tourist season

BPC
May 5th, 2006, 01:24 AM
likelihoood of that: approximately 0%

lofter1
May 5th, 2006, 09:00 AM
Battery Park will be a partial mess for many months -- due to the dig / constuction of the new subway platform that now bisects the park.

BrooklynRider
May 7th, 2006, 07:57 PM
I walked by here last weekend and it is just incredulous that the city can't "do" anything. They have no qualms about using eminent domain for other projects and needs. Why not just "take it.?"

ZippyTheChimp
May 7th, 2006, 08:06 PM
They already have it.

BPC
May 7th, 2006, 08:16 PM
which is the problem

lofter1
June 1st, 2006, 04:47 PM
For the first time in years Slip 1, the pier-extension which runs along the southern side of Pier A, is now open (mainly as access to the vessels used for "Happy Hour Cruises).

I took a stroll out to the end of the extension and it's a great place to get a view of the harbor and Battery Park.

Just wish they'd figure out what to do with Pier A :(

Amigo Mike
July 16th, 2006, 11:04 AM
As I understand the Pier A situation ...... it is mired in bureaucratic red tape .... for what reasons I do not know .... but at this point, supposedly the National Park Service is the hold up. :mad:

The expectation was for NPS to take the lower floor of Pier A to replace the tents in Battery Park for security screenings. A museum would be housed on the second floor, most likely having to do with Titanic.

I think the developer does not want to do the renovations without having definitive lease from the NPS.

BPC
August 25th, 2006, 03:58 PM
more of the same ...

Pier A negotiations continue running adrift

http://www.downtownexpress.com/de_172/dtown.gif
Downtown Express photo by Ramin Talaie

A Lady Liberty Harbor Cruise ferry pulls into Pier A. Discussions between the pier’s developer and the National Park Service have stalled, putting the pier’s future in doubt.

By Ronda Kaysen

Pier A, the historic pier perched on the edge of Battery Park, was once a Victorian symbol of New York City’s splendor. Today, it is a dilapidated blight on the Lower Manhattan landscape, and as discussions to revive it repeatedly disintegrate, its future remains perennially in doubt.

The last remaining 19th-century pier in the city has sat decaying and shrouded in scaffolding for decades, despite attempts by pier leaseholder Wings Point Associates to breathe new life into it. The company restored much of the green and silver facade last year and boasted plans to transform the berth into a three-story destination equipped with a museum, catering hall and shops. But none of that has happened.

“Pier A is a piece of the puzzle to really make [Battery Park] live up to its full potential,” said William Rudin, chairperson of the board of trustees for the Battery Conservancy. “Obviously, if Pier A could get developed sooner rather than later… that would be great.”

The $40 million historic restoration hinges on a deal with the National Park Service, which wants to move its security screening operations for Statue of Liberty tours to the pier’s ground floor.

Since the tours resumed after Sept. 11, 2001, the Park Service has been screening visitors in temporary — and unsightly — tents on the Battery Park promenade. But the agency’s license with the city Dept. of Parks and Recreation to use parkland for the tents expired this summer, and the city has no interest in extending the license — it wants the parkland back.

“They will be moving. That land will now be utilized for public use,” said Parks Dept. spokesperson Carli Smith. “In terms of their license with us, that’s up and they’re going to be moving to another location.”

Smith added that the Parks Dept. “understands the predicament [the Park Service] is in” and will wait for them find a suitable location — preferably at Pier A.

The 1886 pier, which is owned by the city and leased to Wings Point, stands as an obvious alternative to the tents. Wings Point needs an anchor tenant to guarantee a flow of visitors to the isolated pier. And the Park Service needs a new home. The arrangement seemed like a perfect marriage of convenience.

In March 2005, a deal between the Park Service and Wings Point to rent the ground floor of the pier seemed imminent, and regional Park Service officials signed off on it. But when the offer reached federal headquarters in Washington, D.C., it crumbled, sources close to the negotiations say.

Some worry a resolution with the Park Service may be delayed indefinitely, since Park Service Director Fran Mainella resigned from her post last month and no replacement has been named.

“It drags on and on,” said Tom Ickovic, a Wings Point managing partner. “If the Park Service can’t make up their minds, we can’t hold it forever.”

Another interested party — a for-profit museum — is “waiting in the wings” to snatch up the ground floor, said Ickovic. He declined to name the museum.

A private museum as an anchor tenant might not be the best option for Pier A, which is isolated from the bustle of Lower Manhattan, and might have trouble attracting visitors. The tours would guarantee 3 million visitors a year to an otherwise out-of-the-way pier.

“It’s hard to come up with another use for Pier A that’s going to guarantee that stream of customers — it has to be the destination,” said Arturo Garcia-Costas, an aide to U.S. Rep. Jerrold Nadler, who has been a vocal supporter of moving Park Service operations to Pier A.

Wings Point managing partner William Wachtel has a different take on negotiations from his partner Ickovic. “Pier A developers continue their discussions with the National Park Service and hope to achieve a resolution in the near future,” a Wachtel spokesperson wrote in an e-mail statement.

The Battery Park tents were intended to be a short-term solution, but in this post-9/11 New York, they have become anything but. By 10 a.m. on a sunny Tuesday morning this week, a large line had already formed at the promenade, with tourists edging through the switchback lanes as they waited to board boats to Liberty Island. By midday in warmer months, the lines seem endless.

“What is a tent doing in the middle of the park?” said Henry Stern, a Battery Conservancy board of trustees member and the former commissioner of the New York City Parks Dept. “It’s good to have security, but it needn’t be in everyone’s face.”

The Park Service insists it, too, would like to see the tents moved. “Unequivocally, the negotiations are ongoing,” said Park Service spokesperson Darren Boch. “They have not ended and they are not being in any way delayed by any party.”

For months, rumors have been flying that Circle Line Statue of Liberty Ferry, Inc., the company that operates the Liberty Island-bound ferries, has attempted to derail negotiations between Wings Point and the federal government.

Circle Line has had a contract with the Park Service since 1953 to operate the Liberty Island ferries. Wachtel of Wings Point owns Lower Manhattan New York Waterway routes and stands to be a serious contender for the Park Service contract. If the Park Service moves to Pier A, Wachtel will have leverage in a bid for the Liberty Island contract, which expires in 2007.

“The Circle Line people, they’ve got a lucrative thing here and they don’t want anything to jeopardize that,” said a source close to the negotiations who requested anonymity so as not to undo any negotiations.

In what might be a harbinger of a bidding war to come, Wachtel began running a Lady Liberty Harbor Cruise from Pier A this summer, draping the pier’s scaffolding with advertisements promising line-free tours of the New York Harbor and the Statue of Liberty.

“That’s the elephant in the living room,” said Garcia-Costas from Nadler’s office. “If Wachtel is bidding on that concession, then they’d make it easy for the Park Service [to move to Pier A]. If they’re not interested, then maybe they’re thinking, ‘We don’t need the Park Service’” and would have less incentive to accept an offer from the government. “It’s a little bit like reading tea leaves.”

Circle Line, however, balks at rumors of their involvement, which have circulated for months. “It seems like an eternity that they’ve been trying to negotiate this, and every time there’s a problem they point a finger at us and we’re not sitting at the table… we’re not a party to this contract,” said J.B. Meyer, president and C.E.O. of Circle Line Harbor Cruises. “We’ve been for Pier A since the beginning.”

Pier A is not entirely lifeless these days. The 50-minute Lady Liberty Harbor Cruise leaves hourly from the south slip at Pier A and cruises past the Statue of Liberty, Governors Island and other harbor sights. The $15 tours average about 4,600 visitors a week.

On Tuesday morning, a score of tourists wandered onto the 10 a.m. ferry. “Usually it’s a little more crowded than this,” lamented the tour guide as he waited for the tourists to take their seats. Over at the Park Service tents, hundreds of tourists crowded in the hot morning sun waiting to get on the Circle Line ferry to visit the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island.

Francesco Donato, visiting from Italy with his wife, lounged on the Waterway ferry deck. He had taken the Circle Line tour a few days earlier. “How do I describe my emotions in English?” he said when asked which tour he preferred. “This one is less interesting.”

Ronda@DowntownExpress.com

lofter1
August 25th, 2006, 11:25 PM
This ^^ is both depressing and ridiculous.

dwntnvision
February 13th, 2007, 05:07 PM
Too bad about Pier A indeed, especially when so many restauranteurs would love to get their hands on at least a lease in order to develop the concept of Tavern on the Water. What incredible views of the Statue of Liberty and Governor's Island, imagine a glass of wine or a pint on the Hudson on a warm night, or heat lamps allowing you to enjoy the view on a cold winter's day?

The city should allow oversight under the historical preservation guidlines, and release the money from the private developers who could have this building restored and "in use" in less than a year. The Ferries? Poor planning on their part, we have plenty of mooring, pier space throughout the city, no need for this space that may be damaged by continuous boat dockage anyway.

BrooklynRider
February 18th, 2007, 06:55 PM
I agree. Move the whole Statue of Liberty/Ellis Island ferry operation to South Street Seaport environs - or better yet - Brooklyn.

Battery Park has been scarred by this pollution of tourists, tents, and trash.

ablarc
February 18th, 2007, 08:02 PM
Move the whole Statue of Liberty/Ellis Island ferry operation to South Street Seaport environs - or better yet - Brooklyn.

Both a bit hard to get to.

BrooklynRider
February 18th, 2007, 10:12 PM
Yeah, but tourists won't know the difference. The Seaport is really not that tough to get to. Battery Park is just the complete wrong place for a ferry operation.

ablarc
February 18th, 2007, 10:14 PM
Seaport ought to get a stop on the Second Avenue Line, which should run further east than presently planned.

ZippyTheChimp
February 19th, 2007, 10:54 AM
I heard that there's a tentative agreement between the leaseholder of Pier A, Wings Point, and the National Park Service to move their ticketing, security, and ferry service to Pier A.

Wings Point has until April 30 to get an anchor tenant (NPS); perform an underwater inspection; and coming up with a plan, hire a construction company, and post a completion bond for the project.

If that is not met, the city EDC takes over the lease with an $8 million payment.

lofter1
February 19th, 2007, 11:14 AM
Oh, Please, YES ^^^

Everyone pray for this. Pier A has languished far too long.

And they gotta get that white tent :mad: off the esplanade ASAP

nycla3
February 19th, 2007, 08:06 PM
Classic Berenice Abbott photograph taken May 5, 1936

"Gateway to the city, the Department of Dock's Building at Pier A, North River, welcomes many distinguished visitors. Taken off incoming liners and whisked up the harbor in a marine police boat, these have ranged from Lindbergh to Queen Marie."--Elizabeth McCausland for Ms. Abbott's seminal WPA project "Changing New York."

infoshare
February 19th, 2007, 08:45 PM
Classic Berenice Abbott photograph taken May 5, 1936

Nice photo, thanks. Since we are looking back in history - here are some aerial views (http://www.wirednewyork.com/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=1401&d=1137943150) from previous posts (http://www.wirednewyork.com/forum/showpost.php?p=80224&postcount=11) on this thread.
cheers

BPC
February 20th, 2007, 12:17 AM
I heard that there's a tentative agreement between the leaseholder of Pier A, Wings Point, and the National Park Service to move their ticketing, security, and ferry service to Pier A.

Wings Point has until April 30 to get an anchor tenant (NPS); perform an underwater inspection; and coming up with a plan, hire a construction company, and post a completion bond for the project.

If that is not met, the city EDC takes over the lease with an $8 million payment.


Oh Thank God. This whole deal has been an absolute disgrace. The BPC Conservancy (or Trust, I forget what it is called) has done such a good job with the rest of the park, it is a shame to see the City make such a mess of their corner of it.

ZippyTheChimp
February 20th, 2007, 08:41 AM
Don't thank anyone yet. The deal could still collapse.

Partly from its own mistakes, and those of the city (and others), Wings Point has been financially screwed.

It actually began years ago during the electric power wars between Texas and California. A southern California power company was a major investor in an early Pier A plan, and when they pulled out, Wings Point problems began. That eventually led to the suit-counter-suit,

Keep your fingers crossed.

sbbakker
October 5th, 2007, 07:52 PM
Hi Everybody,

I've been reading this thread with great interest. Last week I visited New York and I was really shocked by the way in which this landmark is (not) renovated. Pier A deserves a proper and good renovation, especially because it is one of the most importent pieces of 'living history' in New York City! Also in the travel-history of the Netherlands the Pier played a big part as it was one of the docks of the Holland-America Line.

Could anyone mail me the information about the current owner(s) of this Pier? Hopefully an enthousiastic Dutch guy like me can put some effort and energy in this project as well.

Any information about the owners (e-mail addresses, contact info, etc.) is highly appreciated by me!

Kind regards,
Sjoerd Bakker

ManhattanKnight
October 5th, 2007, 09:04 PM
I believe that Pier A is (still) owned by the City of New York. I would be curious to learn the reason why you believe that Holland-American Line once used Pier A. As far as I know, it operated out of its own terminal in Hoboken, New Jersey (opposite lower Manhattan) until 1963, when it moved to Pier 40 in Manhattan (at West Houston Street), which was built specifically for its use. A recent, two-part photo essay on the history of Holland-America can be found HERE (http://www.worldshipny.com/halannivart1.html).

BPC
January 21st, 2008, 11:01 PM
City Intends to Renovate Landmark Pier as a Hub

By PATRICK McGEEHAN
Published: January 22, 2008
City officials have decided to try again to have a 122-year-old pier near Battery Park restored so that it can serve as a hub that links parks and attractions around the harbor to the rest of the city.

http://graphics8.nytimes.com/images/2008/01/22/nyregion/pier190.jpg
Gabriele Stabile for The New York Times
The pier’s three-story Victorian building would be restored.

The city’s Economic Development Corporation is preparing to announce this week that it has assigned the organization that oversaw the development of Battery Park City to take on the renovation of the dilapidated historic landmark, Pier A. The Battery Park City Authority plans to sell bonds to pay for the project, which its chairman, James F. Gill, estimated would cost $30 million.

The authority, which is controlled by Gov. Eliot Spitzer, would lease the pier for about 50 years for $1 a year. After renovating the three-story Victorian building on the pier and filling it with shops, restaurants and other tenants, the authority would hand over any operating profits to the city government, Mr. Gill said on Monday.

City officials hope that the National Park Service will be one of those tenants, making the pier home to the ferries that take tourists to the Statue of Liberty and to Ellis Island. Park service officials have said they would like to move their tour boat operations from Battery Park to Pier A, but do not have an agreement with the city to do so.

Mr. Gill described attracting the park service as “the main object” in restoring the pier. He said the authority had been trying to take over redevelopment of the pier for more than a decade.

“The people at Battery Park City have been distressed by its unsightly appearance for some time now,” Mr. Gill said.

The pier juts out into the harbor at the border of Battery Park City and Battery Park. With few exceptions, it has been closed to the public for more than 20 years.

City officials see the pier as the centerpiece of their plan to unify various sites along the city’s waterfront into a harbor district. That idea had been frequently expressed by Daniel L. Doctoroff, the former deputy mayor for economic development.

Mr. Doctoroff’s successor, Robert C. Lieber, announced on Monday that Paula Berry, a former publishing executive, would serve as the first director of the harbor district. Ms. Berry is on the board of the National September 11 Memorial and Museum Foundation.

“We’re trying to reprogram this and get something going,” Mr. Lieber said of Pier A. He added that the pier had been “lying fallow for a long time.”

Mr. Gill said the transaction would not require any legislative change because the pier was in an area that was under the jurisdiction of the Battery Park City Authority. He said the authority had begun looking for an architect to design the renovation, and estimated that the work could be completed in three to five years.

That would be about a quarter-century after Edward I. Koch, the former mayor, announced plans to restore the pier. A private group had leased the pier with hopes of reviving it, but the city’s economic development agency grew frustrated by the slow pace of work and bought back the lease last year for about $8 million.

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/01/22/nyregion/22pier.html?_r=1&ref=nyregion&oref=slogin

lofter1
January 21st, 2008, 11:14 PM
Please let this ^ be true.

But it's hard to believe with all the restoration work done a few years back that it will now take another $30 M to get Pier A into shape.

Gotta wonder what shoddy stuff the previous developer did in there so now all that needs to be re-done.

ZippyTheChimp
May 12th, 2008, 06:03 AM
Authority pledges to end decades of Pier A delay

By Julie Shapiro

Pier A sat undisturbed for decades, fenced off and inaccessible.

Now, under the Battery Park City Authority, work to restore the 122-year-old landmarked pier once again appears to be moving forward.

The authority took over the project last December and is about to sign a 49-year, rent-free lease with the city. The authority sees Pier A as a new hub for tourists, who would board the ferries to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island from the pier. A restaurant, catering hall, souvenir shop and café have been the most prominent uses under consideration in recent years.

“[Pier A] has been just sitting there for 25 years or more,” James Gill, chairperson of the B.P.C.A., said at the authority’s Tuesday meeting. “It is an eyesore [and] it is ugly.”

The pier, which juts into the harbor where Battery Park meets Battery Park City, has faced several stalled developments in the past, most recently when Wings Point Development Corporation sat on the property for nearly 10 years. On Tuesday, Gill reassured the authority board that this time, development plans won’t fall through.

“It’s a question of going and doing it,” he said. “We will not fail.”

The authority already sent divers beneath the pier to inspect its substructure, and is currently bidding out contracts for repair work. The newly hired architect, H3 Hardy Collaboration Architecture, and a retail consultant are ready to go. The authority hopes to complete a conceptual framework for the project by August and have a final design by next May. The pier could reopen as soon as 2011.

“We hit the ground running,” said Susan Long, who is coordinating the Pier A project for the authority. “There are a lot of balls in the air already.”

That doesn’t mean it’s all smooth sailing ahead. The city is keeping close reins on Pier A, limiting the authority to an initial budget of $30 million and retaining veto power over potential tenants for the pier.

Some board members were concerned the project could stall again when a new mayor takes office at the beginning of 2010.

Charles Urstadt, vice chairperson of the authority board, and several other board members were also concerned about the $30 million cap. The number is the cost estimate the city received several years ago from Wings Point, the pier’s previous developer who never got off the ground. The estimate has not been adjusted for inflation or rising construction costs.

“We’re a little uneasy about the number, but we have no real basis to say it’s wrong,” said Alexandra Altman, chief counsel for the authority. Until the authority designs the pier and bids out the work, no one will know what the exact cost will be, she said. The city is sticking to the $30 million figure to make sure the project does not grow in scope or cost, she said.

Even with a new mayor, Gill thinks the city will continue to support the project and authorize more funding if necessary.

“It would be difficult for anyone to stop that project in mid-stream,” Gill said, in response to concerns about the project getting delayed. “It’s clear as day it is a plus, for the city, the state and the country.”

The authority is in discussions with the National Park Service to move the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island ferries over to Pier A. Tourists would purchase tickets and go through security on the pier, rather than in the center of Battery Park. The ferries would pull up to a floating dock on the pier’s end, where the water is already deep enough for them without dredging.

Some Battery Park City residents are worried that moving the ferries to Pier A will flood the pier with snaking lines of tourists, rather than resident-friendly uses. Gill, though, was not sympathetic.

“Battery Park City is not the exclusive property of the people who live and work here,” Gill told Downtown Express. “It doesn’t bother me that people come visit us. The idea that we would seal off the views…for those who live here is ridiculous.”

To reduce the long lines for the ferry, Statue Cruises, the ferry operator that took over the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island routes last summer, is moving to timed tickets. That would allow tourists to buy their tickets for a particular departure and then spend time and money in the surrounding neighborhood, rather than waiting in line.

In addition to the ferries, under the lease, the city would allow several other uses for the pier: retail, restaurants and offices. The city wants to make money off of the tenants, to recoup as much of the $30 million in construction costs as possible, Altman said.

That means a nonprofit museum is an unlikely fit for the space. Gill has already tried to interest the Fire Department in moving its museum to Pier A, but Commissioner Nicholas Scoppetta wants to keep the museum in Soho.

Amid talk of preservation and restoration of the pier, Urstadt had a different idea.

“I always felt the best cure for this piece of property was a limited and specified tsunami,” he said.

Without the pier’s historic fire boathouse, Urstadt would extend Battery Park City’s esplanade southeast to Battery Park. The ferries would pull up to the esplanade.

“It could still be done,” Urstadt, also a longtime proponent of extending B.P.C. with landfill to the north, said wistfully. “Thirty million dollars would go a long way.”

Gill cut off that train of thought, reminding the board that the pier is landmarked. Pier A is on the National Register of Historic Places and the Historic American Engineering Record.

Alex Herrera, director of technical services for the New York Landmarks Conservancy, was surprised to hear that authority board members referred to the pier as an eyesore.

“That’s a complete exaggeration,” Herrera said in a telephone interview. “Even empty, it’s beautiful.”

He can see Pier A from his office at One Whitehall St.: the tin siding, the green and white painted arches and the clock tower. Pier A is the only Victorian pier left in New York City, and Herrera calls it an “ornament” for Lower Manhattan.

The clock, installed in 1919, is a memorial to soldiers killed in World War I. It is one of only two clocks on the eastern seaboard to mark “ship’s time,” which means that the bell tolls not to count the hours but to mark shifts, meals and chores aboard a boat.

Pier A most recently docked fireboats, which traveled the coast and pumped ocean water to extinguish fires. Until the 1980s, the firemen passed the time between emergencies on Pier A, Herrera said.

Pier A was originally part of the land allotted to Battery Park City, but the authority has not traditionally controlled it. The authority will lease the pier from the city and then develop it, contracting with subtenants the city approves. The 49-year lease will be renewable for up to four additional 10-year terms.

Before approving the lease with the city, the B.P.C.A. board had to vote on the environmental impact of the work. Board members supported the opinion of environmental consultants, who said that the renovation of Pier A would not have a significant impact on traffic, noise, air quality or natural resources near the pier. If the environmental conclusion holds, the authority will not have to do a more comprehensive environmental impact statement.

Despite the obstacles facing the project, Gill is optimistic.

“This fantastic facility is going to enhance New York for many, many years to come,” he said.

Julie@DowntownExpress.com


Downtown Express is published by Community Media LLC. | 145 Sixth Avenue, New York, NY 10013

© 2008 Community Media, LLC

lofter1
June 6th, 2008, 11:45 AM
BPCA to submit first plans for revamped Pier A in August

Tribeca Trib (http://www.tribecatrib.com/news/newsjune08/pierArenovation.html)
By Matt Dunning
JUNE 4, 2008

http://www.tribecatrib.com/photos/news/june08/pierA.jpg
http://www.tribecatrib.com/photos/news/june08/captions/pierA.gif

The Battery Park City Authority (BPCA) has less than three months to submit preliminary plans for its renovation of the city’s oldest pier shed. Representatives from the Authority and the city’s Economic Development Corp. (EDC) told members of Community Board 1’s Battery Park City Committee on June 3 that initial designs for the planned renovation of the historic Pier A needed to be turned in to the City Council for approval by Aug. 6, according to the terms of its lease.

The Authority signed a 49-year lease, with renewal options, in May, and was given 90 days to produce at least an initial outline of its renovation plans.

EDC vice president Patrick O’Sullivan told committee members the pier, a 120-year-old, three-story structure that juts into the Hudson at the north end of Battery Park, would likely be turned into a mixed-use commercial center, with stores, restaurants and office spaces, and possible visitors center.

“I think we’re all in agreement that we want to see a good mix of uses in there that will serve both tourists and residents of the area,” O’Sullivan said.

To date, the only entities the Authority is sure it would like to have in the space are the operators of the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island ferries. The Authority’s lease stipulates that it must at least try to convince the National Parks Service, which oversees the ferry service, to move the boats from their current location just south of Castle Clinton into the new Pier A. O’Sullivan said the BPCA and EDC have yet to enter into negotiations with the Parks Pervice, and hope to start sometime later this summer.

Sue Long, the Authority’s vice president of strategic planning, said the BPCA would begin surveying area residents and visitors about the kinds of retail businesses they would like to see in the renovated building. Battery Park City Committee chairwoman Linda Belfer said she wants her committee weigh in on those decisions, as well.

“We should be part of the design process, because it’s going to be in our front yard,” committee chairwoman Linda Belfer said.

Most committee members seemed open to suggestions about what should go on the pier, but Battery Park City resident and CB1 member Tom Goodkind said he knows what he doesn’t want there.

“I, for one, would prefer not to have store after store selling souvenirs and trinkets to tourists,” Goodkind said. “We wouldn’t want to see it become just a huge tourist magnet.”

Originally built in 1886, just after the Brooklyn Bridge, to service other docks in the harbor, Pier A was a docking station for the police harbour patrol and later a headquarters for fireboats. The clock tower was erected in 1919 as one of the city’s first memorials to veterans of the First World War. When Battery Park City was formed in the 1970s, control of Pier A, which is immediately to south of the neighborhood, was retained by the city.

The pier, which is listed on the National Historic Registry, has gone unused for decades, however, and has fallen into disrepair. An effort in the 1990s to revive the pier stalled over a disagreement between the city and Wings Point, a private developer. Wings Point spent $20 million in renovations before the city barred it from the pier for failing to pay its rent.

lofter1
June 6th, 2008, 11:48 AM
Battery Park City resident and CB1 member Tom Goodkind said he knows what he doesn’t want there.

“I, for one, would prefer not to have store after store selling souvenirs and trinkets to tourists,” Goodkind said.

“We wouldn’t want to see it become just a huge tourist magnet.”


Better that it remain a half-restored hulk and sit there empty for another 20 years?

pianoman11686
June 7th, 2008, 02:49 PM
It's so obvious to me that this type of structure, with its history and location, deserves the type of redevelopment that San Francisco's Ferry Building received.

BPC
June 8th, 2008, 01:19 AM
Nothing to discuss. It needs to house the ferry operations. Right now they are on some huge obnoxious tent and trailer system which chews up a huge chunk of battery park, with some of the best harbor views in the City. Let's get it done already!!!!

lofter1
June 8th, 2008, 08:32 AM
It should also be noted that Pier A is a much smaller structure (~ 30K sf) than San Francisco's Ferry Building (~ 240K sf). Therefore Pier A is far more constrained in regard to the variety & number of uses that can be fit into the site ...

Pier A (http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m3601/is_22_54/ai_n24254049):



Pier A is a 30,000 s/f facility containing three floors of usable space.


Ferry Building (http://www.ferrybuildingmarketplace.com/history3.php):



The Ferry Building redevelopment represents approximately 65,000 square feet of first floor Marketplace space, and an additional 175,000 square feet of premium second and third floor office space. The Marketplace, organized along the central Nave, provides a distinctive space for bringing together the greater Bay Area's agricultural wealth and renowned specialty food purveyors under one roof. The exterior and main public hall have been restored to their original grandeur for use by ferry passengers and the public at large ...

In 1892, a bond issue to build a new Ferry Building was passed by the voters of California. A young architect named A. Page Brown drew up plans for a large, steel-framed building. His original proposal was for an 840-foot-long building. However, when the construction estimates came in for the foundation (of pilings and concrete arches) the actual length had to be reduced to 660 feet by removing planned twin entrances at either end. As it was, Brown's foundation — which has supported the entire steel-framed structure in such a remarkably dependable manner through two earthquakes (1906 and 1989) — became the largest such foundation for a building over water anywhere in the world.

http://www.ferrybuildingmarketplace.com/images/img2.jpg

http://www.ferrybuildingmarketplace.com/images/img1.jpg

http://www.ferrybuildingmarketplace.com/images/img6.jpg

© 2005 Equity Office.

pianoman11686
June 8th, 2008, 12:14 PM
Never said it had to be done on the same scale, just in the same style. Plus, come springtime, a lot of the action can move outdoors. ;)

ZippyTheChimp
June 8th, 2008, 12:28 PM
Ferry Building is what they should be doing here (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/showthread.php?t=4685&page=9).

Just get the NPS and all the security/boarding stuff off the park esplanade. Add a restaurant and what-not, and you're done.

Oh, and get the clock working again.

ablarc
June 8th, 2008, 12:46 PM
Better that it remain a half-restored hulk and sit there empty for another 20 years?
Oh, he's just demonstrating his superior taste.

pianoman11686
June 8th, 2008, 01:37 PM
Ferry Building is what they should be doing here (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/showthread.php?t=4685&page=9).

No doubt a better space than Pier A, but I thought its fate was already sealed with that hotel developer.

You can't always get what you want, but if you try sometimes...

ZippyTheChimp
June 8th, 2008, 01:52 PM
^
Just think about the space now given over to sales/security check/boarding for Liberty and Ellis Islands. That's all going to go to Pier A. There isn't enough room to develop a comprehensive theme like a food mart. You'd end up with a few stores that nobody would rent.

pianoman11686
June 8th, 2008, 07:06 PM
That's what I meant - screw the other uses and just use the whole space for that purpose.

The ferries can load somewhere else, like through a floating terminal. :)

lofter1
June 8th, 2008, 07:15 PM
Where are you going to locate that new floating ferry terminal?

Besides it makes sense that a PIER should be used for its original purpose: loading & unloading sea-going vessels.

pianoman11686
June 8th, 2008, 08:36 PM
Haven't you ever heard of the idea of "adaptive reuse"?

lofter1
June 8th, 2008, 09:18 PM
Yeah -- when the previous use is no longer viable.

There is pier space on the other side of Battery Park (an ugly 1950s building where the US Coast Guard / Homeland Security is now) which could be re-built for the ferry service to Ellis / Liberty Islands. But that would require lots of money to fix those piers.

Most sensible use of funds is to use the existing (and for the most part re-built as of ~ 1998) Pier A for the intending use.

Save some space at the river end of Pier A for a good and NOT crazily expensive restaurant. Lots of tables out on the deck. Chowder & Lobster Rolls and Hot Dogs & Burgers. Some good beers.

Put the shops elsewhere.

ZippyTheChimp
June 8th, 2008, 09:49 PM
And fix the clock.

Six bells. Time for chowder & beer.

pianoman11686
June 8th, 2008, 10:46 PM
Jeez, sorry I mentioned it.

CowJazz
June 14th, 2008, 11:15 PM
I think pier A would be perfect for the Ellis Island/Liberty Island ferries. A waiting area with a video presentation about the history of the harbor, ellis island, and the statue would be nice to provide a diversion while waiting in line. A gift shop, lower Manhattan visitors center, and nice water-side cafe and your done. A great way for first-time Lower Manhattan visitors to get started. I have guided many bus groups to do the Harbor thing and this would be better. I always thought that the current set-up cheats Castle Clinton its due...a lot of people thinks that its part of the ferry waiting area and nothing more...

ZippyTheChimp
August 8th, 2008, 11:37 AM
http://www.downtownexpress.com/inside_dt_logo.gif

Authority looks for Pier A partition plan

By Julie Shapiro

The historic walls that carve up Pier A’s second floor are the latest challenge the Battery Park City Authority faces in redeveloping the 122-year-old pier.

The authority is about to sign a 49-year, rent-free lease with the city to repair and restore the pier, bringing retail, restaurants and possibly ferries to the dilapidated and fenced-off site.

But since the green-trimmed pier building is a state-registered historic site, it falls under the purview of the State Historic Preservation Office, meaning that SHiPO gets to decide which pieces of the structure must be preserved.

The Battery Park City Authority has met with SHiPO twice, and the preservation agency is concerned that the interior of the building be preserved, Alexandra Altman, executive vice president and chief counsel for the authority, said at the authority’s board meeting last week.

But Dan Keefe, a spokesperson for SHiPO, said the state has not done any detailed studies and has not yet reviewed the project.

At issue is a 200-foot corridor that cuts a line down the length of Pier A’s second floor. Small offices open off either side of the corridor. The offices once housed the Department of Docks, according to the state’s 1975 application to include Pier A on the National Register of Historic Places. At its west end, the corridor terminates in what was once a meeting room, and on the east it opens into a large fireproof room that stored valuable records and maps.

The Department of Marine and Aviation and the Department of Ports and Terminals later used the offices until 1959. In 1960, the pier became a fireboat station.

SHiPO could require the authority to maintain the partitions on the second floor, preventing the authority from opening it up into a single large space. Many ideas for the pier over the years included a banquet hall.

Jim Cavanaugh, president of the authority, said maintaining the partitions “may be an impediment to certain types of uses.”

SHiPO’s Keefe did not identify anything that was historically significant about the office partitions.

Hugh Hardy, founder of H3 Hardy Collaboration Architecture, the firm designing Pier A, is aware of the potential limitations on the space, Cavanaugh said. Hardy will likely retain some element of the partitions, enough to give a sense of what they were, but he will open the space up for a new use, Cavanaugh said.

At the authority’s board meeting last week, members also discussed the city’s funding cap for the project.

“The city made clear that they want this funded for $30 million and not a penny more,” Cavanaugh told the board.

Charles Urstadt, vice chairperson of the authority’s board, said cost escalations are inevitable, especially on the underwater work.

“You never know what you’re going to run into,” he said.

Stephanie Gelb, vice president of planning and design, said the authority could complete the first phase of work with the $30 million and then leave the finishing touches to future developers. Cavanaugh later said the authority might turn part of the building’s shell over to a future tenant and have the tenant provide the fit-out.

The authority has an extra $1.2 million for the project in a grant from the state Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation to repair the pier and create a visitors center. The grant was initially $4 million, and the authority has spent some of that money on restoring the pier’s substructure, Cavanaugh said.

The authority also could get around $7.5 million in historic preservation tax credits, a federal program. But Cavanaugh said that is far from definite.

The authority is negotiating with the National Park Service to move the ferries to Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty to the pier. If the ferries do move, the National Park Service “wants some level of comfort, if not control, over the other tenants,” Cavanaugh said. As the authority discusses tenants and design, repairs to the pier’s substructure are underway.

The state’s 1975 description of Pier A makes the case for preserving the pier, a description that applies just as much to today’s Lower Manhattan landscape: “[Pier A is] one of the very few vestiges of Lower Manhattan’s historic seaward orientation,” the application says. “The distinct vitality of the pier’s design as well as its human scale, now rare in the high-rise world of New York City, enable it to make a unique contribution to the ambience of the island’s southern tip.”

Julie@DowntownExpress.com

BPC
August 8th, 2008, 08:17 PM
I find it an encouraging sign that these problems are being discussed. For the 14 years I've been living down here, there have been official assurances that "progress" was being made on Pier A, but never any details (or construction workers!). I am not a big fan of the BPCA, but they generally know how to get a construction project done.

maclanders
September 13th, 2009, 11:44 AM
I am a RE student interested in cultural center development and Pier A is an amazing building and there are great ideas out there to restore it. However, are there any updates on what the situation is with the project?
I ran by it today and there is so much opportunity and would love to do some research on what is going on with it.
Can anyone provide any feedback/knowledge?

Thanks!

lofter1
September 13th, 2009, 12:20 PM
Pretty much all the latest news can be found in this thread.

Merry
November 26th, 2009, 05:00 AM
Again, a Question of What to Do With Pier A

By PATRICK MCGEEHAN

http://graphics8.nytimes.com/images/2009/11/24/blogs/24pier-cityroom/blogSpan.jpg
A rendering of Pier A, at the northern edge of Battery Park, as it might look when developed,
from the Economic Development Corporation.

Having lost the National Park Service (http://www.nps.gov/index.htm) as a prospective tenant, the city is now seeking ideas on what to do with Pier A, a dilapidated 123-year-old structure at the northern edge of Battery Park.

The crumbling Victorian pier, which once was home to the fire department’s marine operations, has been an albatross to city officials for decades. More than 10 years ago, when Rudolph W. Giuliani was mayor, the city gave a 49-year lease (http://www.nytimes.com/1997/06/19/nyregion/tourist-site-planned-at-pier.html) to a developer who was supposed to restore it.

That plan stalled and the city wound up paying about $8 million to end the lease in 2007. Back then, the National Park Service was still considering making Pier A the base of operations for its ferry service to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, and city officials hoped to turn the pier into Manhattan’s hub for water-borne tourism and transportation.
But the park service decided this year not to wait (http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/03/nyregion/03battery.html) for Pier A to be rebuilt and began planning to move the ferry-loading operation to the Battery Maritime building (http://www.batterymaritimebuilding.com/) at the other end of Battery Park.

This week, the city’s Economic Development Corporation began soliciting suggestions about how to fill the pier when it is ready to be occupied. The uses could include restaurants, stores, markets, tourist services and office space. The development corporation expects the work to be completed in March 2011.

The city has allocated $30 million for the rehabilitation project, which is being overseen by the Battery Park City Authority (http://www.batteryparkcity.org/page/index_battery.html), a city-state corporation. About $5 million has already been spent shoring up the base of the pier, according to the development corporation.

http://cityroom.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/11/24/again-a-question-of-what-to-do-with-pier-a/

Merry
December 17th, 2009, 05:40 AM
Informational meeting last week about Pier A redevelopment


Initial meeting draws more than 50 attendees


http://ebroadsheet.com/PHOTOS_DAILY/DSC_5806PierABBB.jpg


On Friday, more than 50 people representing business, transportation, arts and cultural enterprises attended an informational meeting on the redevelopment of Pier A, the historic Hudson River pier just south of Battery Park City. The meeting was organized by the Battery Park City Authority (BPCA), which has issued a Request for Qualifications (RFQ) from those interested in leasing and operating Pier A for "an active use that will create a first-class destination in Lower Manhattan." New York City Economic Development Corporation is working closely with the BPCA on the $30 million restoration of the City-owned pier.

Pier A, which dates from 1886 and is the last of the piers that once lined the Hudson River in Lower Manhattan, is three stories high with 39,000 square feet of interior space. Uses for Pier A that have been put forward to date include cultural and art exhibit space, a restaurant, a bakery and ferry operations. However, many of the attendees at Friday's meeting were just learning about the physical space of the pier so other uses may be suggested. Those expressing interest ranged from experienced entrepreneurs and cultural operators to people who are just breaking in to new fields. The RFQ process will identify applicants with sufficient experience and resources to develop the pier.

There will be a second information session on Jan. 7, 2010, at 10 a.m. in the 24th floor conference room of the World Financial Center.

Pier A was part of the Battery Park City footprint when the Authority was created in 1969. In addition to serving as a gateway for visitors to New York City, it was where soldiers returning from World War I disembarked and were welcomed home. The pier was also home to the Fire Battalion as well as to other port offices. It has been unoccupied for several decades.

The Battery Park City Authority has already completed underwater repairs to the pier's foundation and has started to replace the pier's deck. Architect Hugh Hardy is responsible for the plans for the pier's restoration, which is expected to be completed with the building available to a selected tenant by March 31, 2011.

The Battery Park City Authority will use the RFQ responses to gauge interest in and assess the qualifications of potential tenants for Pier A. Responses may be used to identify one or more preferred candidate(s) and/or to fashion a subsequent Request for Proposals to be issued in 2010.

http://campaign.constantcontact.com/render?v=001laauDGMXfkVe2Pbk9PlgC0g57hH2xGbAn5ahg2 w5PPZI55uwip7zmHzgQPXf_dQ0n_2Hcs3pnOIkXcP7ogFxEyB1 xWeVGLQhlbNvZfy6QGg%3D

Merry
January 29th, 2010, 07:05 AM
Pier A renovation work approved


by Julie Shapiro

The Battery Park City Authority approved $11.1 million in construction contracts for Pier A Wednesday morning, paving the way for the final repairs to the historic pier.

The authority is redeveloping the three-story landmark pier using $30 million from the city and hopes to turn it over to a tenant next year. The authority is slated to finish underwater repairs to the pier this April and then plans to start the core and shell work. The contracts approved Wednesday will cover that core and shell work. So far, the contracts have come in under budget, which left the authority with extra money to design the public plaza around the pier, the authority said Wednesday.

Charles Urstadt, vice president of the B.P.C.A. board, raised the concern that the authority would lose money on Pier A, but the authority’s president, Jim Cavanaugh, said the city was bearing the risk of the project.

The city has directed the authority not to spend any money beyond the initial $30 million, and the city is the one responsible for the debt service on those funds, Cavanaugh said.

The authority is currently seeking tenants to occupy Pier A, including possibly a restaurant or catering hall at the western tip of Battery Park, but the city will have to approve the rent and terms of any deal.

Robert Mueller, a board member, said he was worried that the authority would not be able to find a tenant willing to pay as much as the city would want.

“I’m not trying to throw cold water on this, no pun intended,” Mueller said. While Mueller said he’d “love to see it work,” he added, “This project has failed before — it doesn’t exactly have a terrific history.”

The city previously tried to work with a private developer on Pier A, which use to be a marine firehouse, but the project never got off the ground.
Board member Lynn Rollins mentioned that her daughter in Oregon recently told her of a vegan restaurant there that supports itself by running a porn shop in the back. The other board members laughed heartily.
“So moved!” Urstadt joked.

“What are you moving?” Chairperson James Gill asked. “The porn shop?”
Prospective tenants have until Feb. 16 to submit their proposals to the authority for consideration.

http://www.downtownexpress.com/de_353/pierarenovation.html

Merry
February 10th, 2010, 05:29 AM
Checking Out the Creepiness of Battery Park's Pier A

February 9, 2010, by Sara

http://cdn3.curbednetwork.com/cache/gallery/4028/4343650125_8754675740_o.jpg

http://cdn3.curbednetwork.com/cache/gallery/4037/4344372904_519c046427_s.jpg (http://cdn3.curbednetwork.com/cache/gallery/4037/4344372904_071404c7ff_o.jpg) http://cdn3.curbednetwork.com/cache/gallery/2647/4343636451_6ea58302a6_s.jpg (http://cdn3.curbednetwork.com/cache/gallery/2647/4343636451_ffa7d0e897_o.jpg) http://cdn3.curbednetwork.com/cache/gallery/2695/4344373204_7959d5d717_s.jpg (http://cdn3.curbednetwork.com/cache/gallery/2695/4344373204_fc6fd82b6b_o.jpg) http://cdn3.curbednetwork.com/cache/gallery/2722/4344373404_96d5b29b7c_s.jpg (http://cdn3.curbednetwork.com/cache/gallery/2722/4344373404_b9a2efedc9_o.jpg) http://cdn3.curbednetwork.com/cache/gallery/2792/4343636753_4c246beae2_s.jpg (http://cdn3.curbednetwork.com/cache/gallery/2792/4343636753_8446eaee8c_o.jpg) http://cdn3.curbednetwork.com/cache/gallery/2775/4344373466_01ed238ee8_s.jpg (http://cdn3.curbednetwork.com/cache/gallery/2775/4344373466_cefddb262d_o.jpg) http://cdn3.curbednetwork.com/cache/gallery/2542/4343636935_9b8f238de3_s.jpg (http://cdn3.curbednetwork.com/cache/gallery/2542/4343636935_4b83dec34c_o.jpg) http://cdn3.curbednetwork.com/cache/gallery/4071/4343637019_808155f3b3_s.jpg (http://cdn3.curbednetwork.com/cache/gallery/4071/4343637019_0bd5866080_o.jpg)
(click to enlarge)

As the architects prepare to plead with the Landmarks Preservation Commission for approval to finish (http://curbed.com/archives/2010/02/05/pier_a_hopes_to_forge_ahead.php) exterior renovation work at Pier A, the Tribeca Citizen took a look around the building's first (http://tribecacitizen.com/2010/02/08/inside-pier-a-first-floor/) and second (http://tribecacitizen.com/2010/02/08/inside-pier-a-the-second-floor/) floors. We nabbed the photos for the gallery above, to give us something to look at until the LPC makes its decision a week from today.

Inside Pier A: The First Floor (http://tribecacitizen.com/2010/02/08/inside-pier-a-first-floor/) [Tribeca Citizen]
Pier A coverage (http://curbed.com/tags/pier-a) [Curbed]

http://curbed.com/archives/2010/02/09/checking_out_the_creepiness_of_battery_parks_pier_ a.php

ZippyTheChimp
February 10th, 2010, 08:18 AM
ON Jan 27, BPCA approved $11.1 million in contracts to continue pier rehabilitation. Interior demo is complete. Decking will be complete in April. Core and shell work will start later this year. The bids were under budget, so the extra money will be used for the plaza in front of the pier.

A tenant is needed to defray the cost of debt service on $30 million, as well as maintenance.

Merry
February 19th, 2010, 07:58 AM
With landmarks approval, Pier A now in search of tenants


http://www.downtownexpress.com/de_356/landmarke.jpg
Rendering of the approved new look for Pier A by H3 Hardy Collaboration Architecture, top.
A look at the pier now and from inside the ground floor, right.


By Julie Shapiro

The redevelopment of Pier A cleared one hurdle this week when the project won unanimous approval from city Landmarks Preservation Commission.
L.P.C.’s vote will allow the Battery Park City Authority to finish stabilizing and restoring the historic pier building so it can eventually open to the public.

“This is a wonderful project,” said Frederick Bland, a Landmarks commissioner, before Tuesday’s vote. “It’s been stalled for so long.”

Hoping to inject new energy into the long-delayed restoration of the 124-year-old building jutting out of Manhattan’s southwestern tip, the city leased Pier A to the B.P.C. Authority two years ago and gave the authority $30 million to get Pier A ready for a commercial tenant.

The authority solicited plans for the pier last fall and many groups attended information sessions, including restaurants, catering halls, arts nonprofits and educational institutions. Proposals were due back to the authority at the end of the day on Tuesday, and on Wednesday, the authority said it had received seven proposals from “very reputable teams.” Authority staff had raised questions in the past about whether development at the pier could be profitable, since it is tucked in a corner of Battery Park that gets little traffic in the winter.

When the authority took over Pier A, the building had been vacant for about 20 years. Surf splashed up through cracks in the floor and rain poured in through poorly sealed windows. The pier’s underwater supports were crumbling, and the entire three-story building leaned several degrees to the south.

“It truly is a miracle that the building is still standing,” said Jack Martin, an architect with H3 Hardy Collaboration Architecture.

H3 Hardy is now working for the B.P.C. Authority to complete restorations that Wings Point, a previous developer, started in the 1990s and abandoned partway through. Most of that work had already been approved by the L.P.C., but H3 made a few changes that the commissioners needed to review on Tuesday.

The only controversial change was the color scheme for the building. The commissioners approved of H3’s plan to keep the roof a pale green, similar to copper’s patina, but they disliked the plan to paint the building dark beige with light cream trim. For most of Pier A’s history, the shades were reversed: the building had a lighter base with darker trim. Bland and other commissioners said the lighter trim gave the building an inappropriate colonial look, when it should appear more Victorian.

Hugh Hardy, founder of H3, replied that he could switch the trim and base colors of the building. The architects returned to the L.P.C. several hours later with new renderings showing a lighter base and a darker trim, and based on that, the L.P.C. approved the project.

Several members of Community Board 1’s Landmarks Committee had also objected to the color scheme when H3 architects presented the project last week. Bruce Ehrmann, co-chairperson of the committee, said the colors reminded him of a “historic theme park.” The committee gave an advisory vote in favor of the project, though Ehrmann and another board member voted against it.

With landmarks approval in hand, the Battery Park City Authority hopes to finish restoring the pier by spring 2011, when it will be ready to turn over to a tenant. If the authority’s public-private development plan succeeds, Pier A could open to the public for the first time in its history.

Originally conceived as an outpost for the New York Harbor Police and the Dept. of Docks, Pier A opened in 1886 as a mixture of offices and spaces for boats to tie up and unload. The “A” in Pier A stands for “administrative,” and as time passed the building slowly converted entirely to office space for government entities that managed the waterfront, said Jason Van Nest, an architect with H3.

Each generation brought additions and alterations to the pier, some more historically sensitive than others. When the Fire Dept. took over in 1964, they stripped the building of all its metal cladding and used the interior as a pipe and woodworking shop, destroying much of the original fabric, Van Nest said. The F.D.N.Y. also used the pier as a fireboat station.

One of the most visible historic features of Pier A is the clock tower on the far end, built as the nation and the city’s first World War I memorial in 1919. Van Nest said the clock’s face is in good shape, with the hands still attached, but he isn’t sure whether the clock can be made to work again.

While the city’s $30 million investment in Pier A will do a lot to restore the building, Van Nest said the best way to ensure that the pier never again falls into disrepair is to find long-term tenants.

“If we’re going to protect this building, it needs to be occupied,” he said.
Nadezhda Williams, with the Historic Districts Council, also said she was concerned about the future of the pier, even once it is restored.

“With its setting on the harbor, Pier A is both a very prominent landmark and unfortunately one very exposed to the forces of nature,” Williams said in testimony to the L.P.C. on Tuesday. “We urge the powers-that-be to make every effort to ensure Pier A’s stability, so that it does not fall apart or have to be dismantled…. The only thing more disheartening than seeing an unprotected historic building destroyed is watching a designated landmark crumble.”

http://www.downtownexpress.com/de_356/withlandmarkapproval.html

Derek2k3
February 19th, 2010, 07:40 PM
I think that whole area north of Battery Park along Battery Place needs to be redone. Way too much paved open area and there's not enough vehicular traffic to justify it.


Maybe it's the Battery tunnel underneath that causes it or maybe it's the bleakness of winter that's getting to me. I think Battery Park is a bit shabby too.

lofter1
February 19th, 2010, 09:59 PM
Battery Park, now that the 1 Subway line platform extension underneath had been completed, is slated for a re-do.

Battery Park Conservancy (http://www.thebattery.org/rebuilding/)

Over the past 13 years, the Conservancy with its public partners, led by NYC Parks & Recreation, has secured $112 million for design, construction and maintenance endowment. Three major capital projects are complete and seven more are in various stages of development, with expected finish dates over the next five years. By 2014 the entire Master Plan for the 25 acres of the Battery will be realized.

Projects in Planning (http://www.thebattery.org/rebuilding/planning.php)

The Battery Garden Bikeway: 2010

The Town Green: 2010

The Battery Lawn: 2011

The Castle: 2014

The Battery Conservancy has taken the first steps toward realizing the rebuilding of Castle Clinton. Thomas Phifer & Partners and Beyer Blinder Belle won the international competition in 1999 and have completed the conceptual design to take the Castle into the 21st century.

The Thomas Phifer & Partners plan (http://www.tphifer.com/#/castle-clinton)

Merry
April 9th, 2010, 08:10 AM
Pier A to get new plaza

Money saved during pier stabilization will go toward plaza design

by Terese Loeb Kreuzer

Pier A, the last of the 19th-century piers that once lined the Hudson River in Lower Manhattan, will be getting a newly designed plaza in front built with money saved during recent structural work to stabilize the pier. The pier, which was completed in 1886 for use by the City's Department of Docks, was in desperate shape when the Battery Park City Authority (BPCA) took it over two years ago. The City allocated $30 million to the BPCA to repair the pier and find a tenant.

H3Hardy Collaboration Architecture has been working on a design for the refurbished pier and will design the plaza, which was not included in the original design. "It was just to be a plain entrance way," said Leticia Remauro, spokesperson for the Battery Park City Authority. "Based on what happens as we construct further, we'll see if we need extra money [to build the plaza]."

The Landmarks Preservation Commission has approved H3Hardy's design for the pier, which will have a pale green roof. The exterior walls will be painted a light beige with dark trim.

The Battery Park City Authority is currently considering possible tenants for the pier. An RFQ (Request for Qualifications) resulted in seven proposals ranging from caterers and restaurants to cultural facilities. Ms. Remauro said that the Battery Park City Authority in consultation with the City's Economic Development Corp. (EDC), will designate a tenant within the year.



http://campaign.constantcontact.com/render?v=001nB5QX27vwTgbRiLPqxPgP4p9Es4538neM4mgzo 7buvTook6wTXmBibrJi9kRw2dIp1Ge58pA7exZYWDOP_8u11dp-LC5KODLpGJQzgTILNQ%3D

Derek2k3
May 1st, 2010, 11:59 PM
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3484/3469733482_7b8387e04e.jpg
jver64

Larger
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3484/3469733482_c146660ea6_o.jpg

Derek2k3
May 2nd, 2010, 12:13 AM
Battery Park, now that the 1 Subway line platform extension underneath had been completed, is slated for a re-do.

Battery Park Conservancy (http://www.thebattery.org/rebuilding/)

Over the past 13 years, the Conservancy with its public partners, led by NYC Parks & Recreation, has secured $112 million for design, construction and maintenance endowment. Three major capital projects are complete and seven more are in various stages of development, with expected finish dates over the next five years. By 2014 the entire Master Plan for the 25 acres of the Battery will be realized.

Projects in Planning (http://www.thebattery.org/rebuilding/planning.php)

The Battery Garden Bikeway: 2010

The Town Green: 2010

The Battery Lawn: 2011

The Castle: 2014

The Battery Conservancy has taken the first steps toward realizing the rebuilding of Castle Clinton. Thomas Phifer & Partners and Beyer Blinder Belle won the international competition in 1999 and have completed the conceptual design to take the Castle into the 21st century.

The Thomas Phifer & Partners plan (http://www.tphifer.com/#/castle-clinton)

Thanks Lofter. Didn't know about all these.

ablarc
May 2nd, 2010, 08:30 AM
^ That Castle Clinton design is really awful.

Derek2k3
May 2nd, 2010, 09:24 AM
http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4060/4571111696_573c1a6395_o.jpg
TPA

Yea what happened? It doesn't even look any cheaper than the previous design by the same firm..


http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4031/4571092910_cbd7d713ce_o.jpg


http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4058/4571092924_47a629a090_o.jpg


http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4044/4571092914_a5907e4b69_o.jpg


http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4072/4571092912_74b33c8bd7_o.jpg

lofter1
May 2nd, 2010, 11:54 AM
I'd be willing to bet, given the financial situation, that designs for Castle Clinton, or any big changes there, are now on hold.

BrooklynRider
May 7th, 2010, 12:03 AM
The glass design looks horrible - like caged exercise area on top of a prison or city school.

ZippyTheChimp
June 8th, 2010, 11:59 PM
A compressor, and I hear jackhammers
http://img9.imageshack.us/img9/4638/piera02c.th.jpg (http://img9.imageshack.us/i/piera02c.jpg/)

Finally starting to rip out the interior.
http://img684.imageshack.us/img684/209/piera03c.th.jpg (http://img684.imageshack.us/i/piera03c.jpg/)

This will be a great space if they ever finish it.
http://img541.imageshack.us/img541/7745/piera04c.th.jpg (http://img541.imageshack.us/i/piera04c.jpg/)

Stroika
June 9th, 2010, 12:47 AM
I was walking through Battery Park on Sunday en route to the Gov's Island ferry and there were loads of emergency vehicles in front of Pier A... wonder if there was danger of a fire?

Also ... why is it that Battery Park is so ... threadbare? Between the rampant trash, the large areas of dead/patchy/missing grass, and the huge numbers of illegal counterfeit-goods vendors, it always feels a lot nastier than you'd think New York's oldest park would. Obviously much of that is attributable to the sheer number of tourists, but, c'mon, Central Park, Union Square, and Bryant Park aren't that far behind in people-traffic, and they're all much better maintained. Anyone know whence the neglect of Battery Park?

lofter1
June 9th, 2010, 09:34 AM
They're getting ready to re-do the bulk of the park, realigning the central garden that runs to Castle Clinton and reworking the pathways. Plus they're going to add a bike path that will snake through the NE edge of BP, connecting the paths from HRP <> East River. When they do the work hopefully they will address the big expanse of concrete sidewalk at the north end. And then if the Feds would move the big white security tent on the waterfront all would be better.

hey19932
June 9th, 2010, 09:24 PM
Yeah the bike path will be a huge improvement! I might be alone on this one but I quite like the glass design for castle clinton. If done right I feel like it could end up being like new york's own little reichstag.

Derek2k3
July 4th, 2010, 12:10 PM
Saw some work being done on this yesterday.

http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4114/4747764139_4dd5d02553_b.jpg
paolomix (http://www.flickr.com/photos/paolomix/4747764139/sizes/l/in/set-72157623604101448/)

From this angle you almost get a true view of what 1931 New York looked like in color.

lofter1
July 21st, 2010, 10:06 AM
Who are these folks at The Battery Park City Authority who continually hire ineffective and seemingly incompetent contractors?

Contract Dispute Leaves Lower Manhattan's Pier A With a ‘Plainer’ Plaza

The Battery Park City Authority will use less expensive materials to build a public plaza around the landmark pier.

DNAinfo (http://dnainfo.com/20100720/financial-district-battery-park-city/contract-dispute-leaves-lower-manhattans-pier-with-plainer-plaza)
By Julie Shapiro
DNAinfo Reporter/Producer
July 20, 2010

BATTERY PARK CITY — The long-troubled Pier A renovation will result in a 'plainer' plaza after the project lost both its general contractor and construction manager earlier this year, delaying the project four months and slashing its budget.

The Battery Park City Authority is in charge of the city's $30 million overhaul of the landmark pier building at lower Manhattan’s southern tip. In addition to restoring the crumbling 124-year-old building and finding a new use for it, the Authority was also supposed to construct a plaza around the building as a much-anticipated public amenity.

But there was never any money specifically set aside for the plaza — the Authority planned to just use left over money from other pieces of the Pier A project.

A couple of months ago it looked as though the Authority would have several million dollars in the bank for the plaza, but now that money will likely go to pay a new general contractor, said Battery Park City Authority President Jim Cavanaugh at the Authority’s board meeting Tuesday morning.

“We’re going to scale back plans for the plaza,” Cavanaugh said. “It will just be a much plainer plaza than we had hoped.”

Cavanaugh sounded frustrated that the city's Economic Development Corp. would not consider kicking in additional money to build a nicer space.

“We’re expected to provide the plaza, but we were not given the money to do it,” Cavanaugh said. “We’re going to do our best.”

An EDC spokesman declined to comment on the plaza funding.

The Pier A project suffered two setbacks earlier this year when the Authority removed construction manager PHB Catalyst Group, and the general contractor, Mc Gowan Builders, left. The Authority quickly brought in the LiRo Group to manage the project but had to publicly solicit a new general contractor, a lengthy process that is not yet complete.

Fernando Mateo, a recently appointed member of the authority’s board, criticized staff for not foreseeing difficulties with Mc Gowan. The company initially presented a bid 44 percent lower than the next lowest bidder, which could mean they did not understand the complexity of the work or intended to collect more money in change orders later, Mateo said.

“It raised a red flag,” admitted Anthony Woo, the Authority’s vice president of construction.

Mc Gowan ultimately raised its cost estimate from $5.2 million to $6.9 million, but left this spring over objections to pieces of the project.

A spokesman for Mc Gowan did not respond to a request for comment.

The Authority hopes to have a new general contractor on board by early next month but expects to pay more than Mc Gowan was charging.

Meanwhile, the Authority has narrowed its search for a tenant to four potential candidates and hopes to turn the building over to one of them by August or September 2011, four months later than planned.

Copyright © 2009 - 2010 Digital Network Associates dba DNAinfo.com

Ninjahedge
July 21st, 2010, 11:32 AM
They would charge more than they WERE charging, or more than they WERE GOING TO charge?

44% lower than next bidder is a big chunk, but $5.2M/56% = $9.28M....($6.9M is still less than that...)


Makes you wonder, was this just round 1 of multiple increases?

ablarc
July 21st, 2010, 12:27 PM
When it comes to selecting a contractor, I tell my clients not to choose the low bid. Those who do, often have reason to regret their decision.

ZippyTheChimp
July 21st, 2010, 12:58 PM
I wonder what they mean by plain vs fancy. Maybe it's just a choice of materials.

At HRP, specifically at the Chelsea Cove section, concrete agregate borders and pavers in some areas replaced cut granite stone.

Ninjahedge
July 21st, 2010, 01:13 PM
It probably means Concrete everything Zip.

From paving stones to standard sidewalk, etc etc.

Maybe even Fake Plastic Trees.... ;)

lofter1
July 26th, 2010, 11:21 AM
Change in construction management at Pier A

Battery Park City Authority replaces construction manager, general contractor quits

Broadsheet Daily (http://web.me.com/broadsheet/Broadsheet/Home/Entries/2010/7/26_Monday_July_26%2C_2010.html)
By Terese Loeb Kreuzer
July 26, 2010

It's been a bumpy ride for Pier A, the landmark Hudson River pier at the junction of Battery Park City and historic Battery Park, that has been vacant for more than 20 years awaiting rehabilitation. In October 2008, the Battery Park City Authority (BPCA) signed a long-term lease with New York City's Economic Development Corporation to restore the pier and find a suitable tenant. Last Tuesday, the BPCA board of directors discussed the latest setback in the pier's troubled history - the Authority's decision in April to terminate its contract with the phbCatalyst Group, the construction manager of the project, and the decision of McGowan Builders, the general contractor, to bow out.

"It became apparent to us that phbCatalyst had put together a work plan and a set of resources that were not going to be sufficient to address the needs of this project as it progressed and as the activity increased," Gwen Anderson, the BPCA's vice president of strategic planning, explained to the Board.

Beginning May 3, the LiRo Group, with whom the BPCA had a contract pending as an "on-call construction manager" stepped in to the job.

Around the same time, McGowan Builders withdrew as Pier A's general contractor. "McGowan reached the conclusion that there were a number of items in the work scope that they had not included in their pricing," said Ms. Anderson.

The BPCA has issued an RFP for a replacement general contractor and expects to have a new one by mid-August.

Is it usual to have a change in general contractor if "somewhere along the way there's a bump in the road," Board member David Cornstein wondered. "Perhaps the selection process should have been a little different?"

"It's certainly unusual that we would have had two of those situations occur in short proximity to each other," Ms. Anderson replied. "I believe the selection process for the general contractor was quite rigorous and thorough," she continued, "and aside from the interview process, there were two follow-up, extended scope meetings that were intended to ferret out any issues or questions related to the scope of work. They involved not only our current staff but our architects and our engineers and they were all satisfied that the questions had been answered. We checked references and they all came out very positive. It was simply a matter of the contractor admitting at a certain point that they had not taken our contract to their legal counsel for review. There were some miscommunications that resulted in their not pricing the job as they would have preferably."

New York City has allocated $30 million for the rehabilitation of Pier A. According to Anthony Woo, the Authority's vice president of construction, McGowan underbid the contract by 30 percent compared with what the Authority expected to pay for the work.

"There may have been some expectation about change orders that led to the low bid," said Ms. Anderson. "We have an opportunity now to get another contractor in that may price it more accurately and reasonably. Also our new construction manager has performed a new constructability review. The possibility of change orders coming down the pike later has been greatly reduced, I believe."

BPCA president James Cavanaugh said that the Pier A project would still come in within the $30 million budget, but that there may be less money for a plaza fronting the building should the new general contractor cost more than the old one.

The change in construction management has set the timetable for the building back by around four months. The BPCA expects to receive responses from four potential tenants on July 30 and hopes to turn the building over to one of them by September 2011.

Merry
December 9th, 2010, 05:38 AM
Grand Tribute to the Heritage of Italians

By PATRICK McGEEHAN

Anybody who attends the Metropolitan Opera or Fashion Week or shops at Eataly, the new temple of pasta and prosciutto near Madison Square, may think that all due respect is being paid to Italians and their contributions. But he or she has not met Joseph J. Grano Jr.

When Mr. Grano, a proud third-generation Italian-American, looks around the city, he sees his countrymen getting short shrift. But he has cooked up a $25 million solution: a museum devoted to Italian heritage that would be the main attraction on a 124-year-old Victorian pier under renovation in Lower Manhattan.

“Almost every ethnic group, from the Greeks to the Jews to the Irish, all have museums,” Mr. Grano said. “It’s about time that Italian-Americans memorialized their culture so that succeeding generations can understand their contributions to society.”

Mr. Grano is not ignorant of the existence of the Italian American Museum that opened two years ago on Mulberry Street. It’s just that the existing museum is small and low key, and Mr. Grano’s style is decidedly not.

He enlisted in the Army in 1967, fought with Special Forces in Vietnam and received a Bronze Star for valor. He rose on Wall Street from stock broker to chief executive of PaineWebber, then got out in 2004 while the getting was, oh, so good.

For his next act, he helped bankroll a musical composed by his friend Bob Gaudio, which became “Jersey Boys,” a phenomenal success that has been staged in more than 40 cities. He raised more than $200,000 for President George W. Bush’s re-election campaign.

So, what he has in mind for Pier A, at the northern edge of Battery Park, is a celebration, not just of Italian ingenuity and flair, but also of all elements of la dolce vita. For starters, he envisions an entrance flanked by a Roman chariot and a Ferrari — “to show the progress,” he said.

Beyond that, there would be exhibits showcasing artists like da Vinci and Michelangelo and composers like Puccini and Verdi. “You can’t argue with the contribution to the arts,” he said.

But he also wants to capture the experience of the throngs of Italian immigrants who passed through Ellis Island, a short ferry ride from the pier. He hopes to strike an arrangement with the National Park Service to share the database of the Ellis Island museum, whose restoration campaign, he is quick to say, was led by an Italian-American, Lee A. Iacocca.

Mr. Grano’s proposal also calls for an amphitheater for presentations to visiting students. And for the grown-ups, a private room on the second floor of the pier facing the Statue of Liberty could be used for wine tastings and private functions. He said he had an agreement with Arthur Imperatore, who operates the New York Waterway ferries, to run harbor tours from a dock alongside the pier.

All told, his proposal — one of four being considered by the Battery Park City Authority, which controls the pier — would cost about $25 million. Undaunted, Mr. Grano said he had lined up several prominent people who were willing to contribute as much as $1 million each. The authority plans to make a choice by early next year.

Mr. Grano “has access to another level of significance than I do,” said Joseph V. Scelsa, the founder and president of the Italian-American Museum in Little Italy.

“He may able to attract some huge amounts of money,” Mr. Scelsa continued. “For the project he wants to do, he needs it.”

Mr. Scelsa is familiar with Mr. Grano’s fund-raising prowess because they collaborated in the late 1990s to come up with the money for an exhibition at the New-York Historical Society, “The Italians of New York: Five Centuries of Struggle and Achievement.”

The existing museum grew out of that exhibition, but it took Mr. Scelsa several years to find a suitable home for it. Even now, Mr. Scelsa’s museum — a low-tech collection of documents and artifacts — is open to the public only on the weekends, entertaining groups by appointment during the week.

He insists that he does not see Mr. Grano’s ambitious plan as competitive. “We’re pretty much simpatico,” Mr. Scelsa said.

The time has come, he said, for Italian-Americans to pay tribute to the generations that came before them.

“The first generation worries about survival,” said Mr. Scelsa, a retired sociology professor. “The second generation gets education. The third generation looks back and says, ‘How did we get here, to this place in the world?’

“I’m third generation, and so is Joe.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/08/nyregion/08about.html?_r=1

ZippyTheChimp
February 21st, 2011, 11:47 PM
http://img19.imageshack.us/img19/7484/piera05c.th.jpg (http://img19.imageshack.us/i/piera05c.jpg/) http://img594.imageshack.us/img594/66/piera06c.th.jpg (http://img594.imageshack.us/i/piera06c.jpg/) http://img259.imageshack.us/img259/6328/piera07c.th.jpg (http://img259.imageshack.us/i/piera07c.jpg/) http://img140.imageshack.us/img140/1473/piera08c.th.jpg (http://img140.imageshack.us/i/piera08c.jpg/)

scumonkey
February 22nd, 2011, 12:21 AM
Are they actually working on this again...looks like it?! (nice pics by the way;))

ZippyTheChimp
February 22nd, 2011, 12:49 AM
Mostly interior demo. Window sashes have been removed.

Merry
March 9th, 2011, 07:52 AM
Public Plaza, Waterfront Dining Coming to Battery Park's Pier A

March 8, 2011, by Joey Arak

http://ny.curbed.com/uploads/2011_3_piera-thumb.jpg (http://ny.curbed.com/uploads/2011_3_piera.jpg)
[Click to expand! Rendering by Rogers Marvel Architects (http://www.rogersmarvel.com/).]

Has peace and prosperity finally come to Pier A? The crumbling 125-year-old Lower Manhattan landmark has seen a number of redevelopment proposals fail in recent years due to budget concerns and other issues. Now the Victorian pier, which juts out from Battery Park, has a development partner, the Dermot Company (the Post (http://www.nypost.com/p/news/business/makeover_for_downtown_pier_455TMTB6EBRdVacRyPzGpM) reports), and a restaurant operator, Harry and Peter Poulakakos (the Times (http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/08/nyregion/08pier.html?partner=rss&emc=rss) reports). The Poulakakos family owns or co-owns a number of popular Financial District spots, like Financier Patisserie, Harry's Steak, and Adrienne's Pizza Bar. What are they planning at Pier A? Plenty!

The Battery Park City Authority has just approved the Dermot/Poulakakos lease. The redevelopment of Pier A (the city authorized $30 million for the work back in 2008) includes a visitor's center, enhanced waterfront access, 30,000 square feet of public plaza space and a 12,500-square-foot public promenade. And now, the grub. Here's how the operation is described in a press release:
The Poulakakos Family’s plan calls for a casual dining restaurant and an oyster bar with outdoor seating, coffee shop and visitor center to occupy the first floor of the pier which in total measures approximately 39,000 square feet. A fine dining restaurant and event venue will be located on the second floor of the building, with a smaller event and entertainment venue located on the partial third floor. There will be public seating on the plaza and promenade adjacent to the Pier.A rendering is above. A bit different from the pier's current state (http://ny.curbed.com/archives/2010/02/09/checking_out_the_creepiness_of_battery_parks_pier_ a.php), right?

Makeover for downtown's Pier A (http://www.nypost.com/p/news/business/makeover_for_downtown_pier_455TMTB6EBRdVacRyPzGpM) [NYP]
Restaurateur Is Said to Win Pier A Lease (http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/08/nyregion/08pier.html?partner=rss&emc=rss) [NYT]

http://ny.curbed.com/archives/2011/03/08/public_plaza_waterfront_dining_coming_to_battery_p arks_pier_a.php#more

ZippyTheChimp
March 9th, 2011, 09:27 AM
The 'temporary' security tent that will have its 10th anniversary this year is due to be moved to Ellis Island. However, the plan is held up for 'further study'. (http://www.downtownexpress.com/de_409/citylooking.html)

ZippyTheChimp
March 14th, 2011, 03:44 PM
Pier Pressure Greets Vendor Pick


http://web.me.com/broadsheet/Broadsheet/Home/Entries/2011/3/14_March_14_2011_files/shapeimage_1.png
rendering courtesy BPCA

Dianne Renzulli

At its March 8 board meeting, the Battery Park City Authority (BPCA) unveiled its vision for the future of Pier A -- the historic waterfront structure the juts into the Hudson River between the southern edge of Battery Park City and Battery Park -- by selecting an anchor tenant for the pier's redevelopment. The Poulakakos Family (well-known for their restaurants on Stone Street), and their partners, The Dermot Company, will be expanding their food empire to Pier A with a series of new establishments: a first-floor restaurant, a coffee shop, an oyster bar with outdoor seating, and a fine-dining restaurant on the second floor. In a new departure for the Poulakakos family, the new pier will also include a visitor's center on the first floor, an event venue on the second floor, and a smaller entertainment venue on the partial third floor. The announcement came after a two-year tenant selection process that was preceded by a period of public comment, from January to November 2009. Community leaders voiced reservations, however, that there was little to comment upon until the Authority's choice of a tenant became public on March 8th.

Community Board 1 (CB1) and residents of Battery Park City took an interest in the future of Pier A when the City leased the site to the BPCA three years ago, and allocated $30 million of New York State funds to renovate and restore the landmarked pier, which dates to 1886 and is the oldest surviving pier in New York City. Pier A includes more than 30,000 square feet of public plaza space and a 12,500 square foot public promenade on the water.

Leticia Remauro, spokesperson and community liaison for the BPCA, said "we attended a meeting of the Community Board and we solicited opinions from the committee and anyone else there that was reported in most of the local newspapers with my e-mail address at the time for people to send back their commentary." She added that the BPCA made several appearances at CB1's Battery Park City Committee and one to the Landmarks Committee, as well as making monthly reports to the Battery Park City Committee on Pier A's status.

Julie Menin, chair of Community Board 1 (CB1), disagrees: "It simply is not accurate to say that the Community Board was consulted on the selection of the use for Pier A. On the contrary, based on our records of meetings, the BPCA had one meeting in the last few years where they spoke to the community about different types of uses for Pier A. We were never consulted about the selection of the Poulakakos family and indeed found out about it through a media article, nor were we consulted on the community's view that Pier A would become a restaurant and catering space. While the Poulakakos family has a long tradition of operation in Lower Manhattan, my concern is that a prime community space -- one that serves as a gateway to Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty -- it is not being utilized truly for the public use, such as a major museum. The Community Board should have been brought into the selection process and an operator should not have been selected without a clear and transparent process involving input from the major stake-holders Downtown."

Some members of the community have voiced strong support for the new selection. "Pier A has stood vacant for nearly 20 years, but the good news today is that the BPCA, led by Bill Thompson and Gayle Horwitz, has given this jewel of New York Harbor back to the people," said Elizabeth H. Berger, President of the Alliance for Downtown New York (Downtown Alliance). "Harry and Peter Poulakakos, whose patisseries, cafés and restaurants have helped transform the Lower Manhattan dining scene, are a terrific choice to bring Pier A back to life."

The Poulakakos family is well known for their work with the Downtown Alliance to revitalize Stone Street by establishing a local restaurant row: Ulysses, Financier Patisserie, Vintry and Adrienne's Pizzabar. Over recent years, they have also opened Harry's Italian on Gold Street, and Bayards and Harry's Steak House on Hanover Square. And, earlier this year, the Poulakakos family was awarded the contract to open Harry's Italian Pizza Bar in the Conrad Hotel (the site of the former Embassy Suites) by fall 2011.

ZippyTheChimp
April 11th, 2011, 04:49 PM
More detailed information about access to Pier A



Pier Group


Business Team Selected by BPCA to Develop Historic Dock
is Introduced to the Community


Since the Battery Park City Authority (BPCA) announced its selection in March of the Poulakakos group, and their partners, the Dermot Company, as anchor tenants for Pier A (the historic building and waterfront space between Battery Park and Wagner Park), there has considerable speculation about community access to the space and controversy about what some critics see as a lack community input in the selection process. But on April 5, in their first public appearance before the Battery Park City Committee of Community Board 1 (CB1), Harry and Peter Poulakakos, and their associates reached out to the neighborhood and tried to allay these concerns.

Peter Poulakakos said "we've seen the community evolve and we're up to date about what families need. We're offering something that goes well with Lower Manhattan. There will be a lot of amenities here and things that people will go to see -- Pier A's culture, history and waterfront. It can satisfy all groups of people from New Yorkers to tourists."

The layout of Pier A allows for public access to the structure's frontal plaza and the walkways around the building's waterfront on all sides. On the plaza, patrons will pass a kiosk where they will be able to buy trips on historic ships that will be tied up on the pier. Also on the plaza, the pier will occasionally host live music and other events open to the public. Tourists may choose to enter the building's corner door into a visitor's center, while a main entrance will take patrons into a hallway lined with historic photos and passing into a large, open interior. The ground floor will have public seating around its edges with a center occupied by an oyster bar, a casual Americana restaurant and a coffee bar. French doors will open from the building onto outdoor patios, and the public will be able to enter and exit these doors at whim. Ground floor amenities will also include two large banks of public restrooms that will be maintained by an attendant on duty.

A stairway and elevator will lead to a second floor where patrons can visit a fine dining restaurant or rent small catering spaces, and the public can access a second floor terrace. On the third floor, a loft-like space with windows on all sides will allow for event and catering rentals with a full view of two Lower Manhattan monuments: the Statue of Liberty and the World Trade Center Tower. All catering will be provided by the Poulakakos team with the possible exception of food that must be prepared in accordance religious laws.

Danny McDonald, a Poulakakos associate and proprietor of several downtown restaurants, likened the ground floor atmosphere of Pier A to Stone Street -- an open seating area that is available to the public, but largely used by restaurant patrons during peak hours. Neither Mr. McDonald nor other members of the team were able to give an idea of rental rates for the catering spaces on the second and third floors. However, the space is likely to come at a premium given that the BPCA lease will cost the Poulakakos business approximately $40 million over 25 years -- at least $1.6 million per year -- plus 8% of all annual gross over $18 million.

Nevertheless, the Poulakakos team indicated their commitment to public service with assurances that they would offer community groups the catering space free-of-charge during off-peak hours. In addition, they are planning an educational use of the pier's north side. The New York Harbor School, based on Governors Island, will run an oyster farm with interpretive signage in that space. Mr. McDonald pointed out that the oysters were not going to be served, at least in the near future, to patrons of the oyster bar. Rather, they are meant to provide a contemporary demonstration of the role oysters have played in the history of New York harbor.

Gayle Horwitz, BPCA president and chief executive officer, said this proposal's unique feature was its accessibility. "If you want to sit down and have a beer, nobody is going to tell you to get out or keep ordering. A museum would not have been public space because you would have had to pay admission. We have to approve all of their designs and will be working closely together in terms of the actual operations," she said, adding the BPCA is committed to public access. But at the same time, she noted, the city's Economic Development Corporation (EDC) is the landlord that has leased Pier A to the BPCA, and that agency has insisted that the project be a profit-making venture. The City leased the site to the BPCA, under the direction of the EDC, three years ago and allocated $30 million of state funds to restore the landmarked pier, which was built in 1886, making it the oldest in the city.

The Poulakakos family is well known for their work with the Downtown Alliance to revitalize Stone Street with a restaurant row: Ulysses, Financier Patisserie, Vintry and Adrienne's Pizzabar. This year, the Poulakakos family won the contract to open Harry's Italian Pizza Bar in the Conrad Hotel (the site of the former Embassy Suites) by fall 2011, and a $150 million interior-redevelopment contract for the Battery Maritime Building (next to the Staten Island Ferry Terminal) to establish a specialty foods marketplace, a boutique hotel and roof-top, Mediterranean restaurant.

If all goes according to plan, the Poulakakos family would like to open Pier A by the end of 2012. They will come back to CB1's Battery Park City Committee in September of this year with an update on Pier A's interior redesign.


Dianne Renzulli

lofter1
April 24th, 2011, 07:28 PM
Back in the days of black and white Pier A was home to the Harbor Precinct of the NYPD ...

Harbor Precinct on Pier A - 1940's

12825
photo courtesy of Bill Smith (http://www.policeny.com/thehouse1.html)


12824

KEY TO BATTERY AND WHITEHALL DISTRICT MAP (http://newyorkfiles.net/new-york-city/060.htm)

2. Department of Docks Police Harbor Precinct

GordonGecko
April 25th, 2011, 10:53 AM
that's pretty neat, it's amazing how many uses any given plot of land will have had over the course of 300 years

Merry
January 5th, 2012, 04:38 AM
Landmarked Pier A in Worse Shape Than Originally Thought, Officials Say

By Julie Shapiro

http://assets.dnainfo.com/generated/photo/2012/01/1325701361.jpg/image640x480.jpg

http://assets.dnainfo.com/generated/photo/2011/12/1323712313.JPG/image640x480.jpg

http://assets.dnainfo.com/generated/photo/2011/12/1323712374.JPG/image640x480.jpg

http://assets.dnainfo.com/generated/photo/2012/01/1325709762.jpg/image640x480.jpg
Historical view

http://assets.dnainfo.com/generated/photo/2011/04/story_masterimage_2011_04_R2457_PIER_A_UPDATE_0406 2011/image640x480.jpg
The ground floor of the pier will feature several eateries, including an oyster bar and a boutique hot dog cafe.

http://assets.dnainfo.com/generated/photo/2011/04/story_masterimage_2011_04_R4913_PIER_A_UPDATE_0406 2011/image640x480.jpg
The second floor of the pier will have a sit-down restaurant.

http://assets.dnainfo.com/generated/photo/2011/04/story_masterimage_2011_04_R3231_PIER_A_UPDATE_0406 2011/image640x480.jpg
The pier's third floor will offer catering and event space.



BATTERY PARK CITY — The cost of the massive redevelopment of Pier A has ballooned and the project is slated to run behind schedule, as officials have discovered that the rotting landmark is in worse shape than initially believed, they revealed this week.

The overhaul of the 126-year-old landmarked building will now cost taxpayers $36 million, up from $30 million, and the pier will not reopen to the public until at least the middle of 2013, Battery Park City Authority officials said.

"There was a great deal more rot … than we had anticipated when the project started," said Gwen Dawson, senior vice president of asset management for the authority, at a Community Board 1 meeting Tuesday night.

"There was a significant amount of water damage, rot and structural deterioration," she said.

Crews working on Pier A are still continuing to find rot, Dawson said, which means that the work could be delayed even further.

The authority took over the crumbling pier from the city in 2008, after it had sat empty and exposed to the elements for more than a decade.

The authority is painstakingly preserving the pier and adding modern mechanical systems, so the Dermot Company and restaurateurs Harry and Peter Poulakakos can turn it into an oyster bar and catering hall.

After discovering rotten wooden beams and other problems, the authority brought in new consultants and ultimately decided to spend the extra time and money to comprehensively repair the building, replacing much of the roof and adding new siding, gutters and insulation.

"While it may have seemed slow at times, it was the right thing to do," said Gayle Horwitz, president of the Battery Park City Authority. "The right thing is not always the expedient thing."

The authority hopes to finish the restoration and mechanical work by the fall of 2012 or the end of the year at the latest, and then Dermot would take over and begin construction on an $18 million fit-out of the restaurant and catering hall. That work will take an additional nine to 12 months, a Dermot representative said.

Pier A opened in 1886 as headquarters for the New York Harbor Police and the Department of Docks. The Fire Department took over the pier in 1964 and used it as a workshop and fireboat station.

At the far end of the pier is a clock tower that rose in 1919 as the country's first World War I memorial.

Some residents and preservationists had expressed concern recently about workers leaving Pier A's many doors and windows open to the wind, rain and waves during the ongoing construction, but Kevin Harney, principal at Stalco Construction, said Tuesday that he was careful to keep the building's wood as dry as possible.

Harney said it actually would not be safe to dry the wood entirely, because it is so old that it would be prone to warping or splitting. Instead, he keeps the wood at just the right level of moisture to avoid both mold and drying.

Harney said Pier A is one of the most complicated and meticulous construction projects he has ever done.

"This has been a tough one," he said. "We've had a lot of obstacles."

http://www.dnainfo.com/20120104/downtown/landmarked-pier-worse-shape-than-originally-thought-officials-say#ixzz1iZgamgD5

ZippyTheChimp
January 5th, 2012, 09:21 AM
The authority took over the crumbling pier from the city in 2008, after it had sat empty and exposed to the elements for more than a decade.
Even after it was taken over, it remained open to the weather. Some of it was just open windows on the second floor that no one thought to shut.

What did they expect?

GordonGecko
January 5th, 2012, 10:47 AM
pretty negligent

lofter1
January 5th, 2012, 10:55 AM
How did the former stewards / contractor miss all that rot? Or is it new-ish rot, and occurred during the period when the long lawsuit was in process?

Methinks the bigger rot is to be found elsewhere, besides the beams and siding.

Ninjahedge
January 5th, 2012, 12:38 PM
Yep.

Nobody with ANY experience would have thought that this was anything but a complete renno.


"There was a great deal more rot … than we had anticipated when the project started," said Gwen Dawson, senior vice president of asset management for the authority, at a Community Board 1 meeting Tuesday night.

The proper word would have been "hoped" not "expected".

They are just looking for more $$ on a low bid/proposal.

ZippyTheChimp
April 21st, 2012, 07:59 PM
Pier A getting a real copper roof.

http://img27.imageshack.us/img27/1460/piera09c.th.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/27/piera09c.jpg/) http://img207.imageshack.us/img207/660/piera10c.th.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/207/piera10c.jpg/) http://img39.imageshack.us/img39/4710/piera11c.th.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/39/piera11c.jpg/) http://img641.imageshack.us/img641/365/piera12c.th.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/641/piera12c.jpg/)

Merry
June 8th, 2012, 07:58 AM
No Party Boats at Pier A, Battery Park City Residents Say

http://assets.dnainfo.com/generated/photo/2012/05/1337706148.jpg/image640x480.jpg

http://assets.dnainfo.com/generated/photo/2012/05/1337706194.jpg/image640x480.jpg

LOWER MANHATTAN — Don't bring the party to Pier A.

That's what Battery Park City residents told officials Tuesday night, after hearing that a new oyster bar and catering hall under construction at the historic Downtown pier would serve as a launch point for dinner cruises and other boat excursions several times a week starting next summer.

The residents worried that party boats would bring noise and pollution to their neighborhood, and also expressed fear that hordes of tourists drawn to the cruises would overcrowd the new public plaza encircling Pier A.

"A tourist-friendly amenity creates [a space that is] resident-unfriendly," said Jeff Galloway, co-chairman of Community Board 1's Battery Park City Committee.

"I would hate to see this little jewel of a space be thrown in with Battery Park, be akin to the South Street Seaport…and become resident-hostile."

Gwen Dawson, senior vice president of asset management for the Battery Park City Authority, which is repairing the 126-year-old landmarked pier, replied that she would discuss the community's concerns with Pier A's developers, who include the Poulakakos family.

Dawson added that the boat trips would only take place two to three days a week, and they would likely include wedding parties as well as ticketed sunset cruises leaving from the south and west sides of the pier. The boats would not dock at Pier A for extended periods of time, she noted.

Residents asked how the authority would handle crowds coming on and off the boats, and whether the authority would limit the vessels to those that have low emissions.

"Our concern is that you put more strain on that open space than we had ever anticipated," said Anthony Notaro, a CB1 member and Battery Park City resident. "That's really an issue."

A representative of the Poulakakos family did not immediately respond to a request for comment Wednesday.

The residents raised concerns about the boats Tuesday night after getting an early glimpse of designs for the 34,000-square-foot public plaza around Pier A, which is one of the main community amenities in the public-private development of the pier.

Rogers Marvel Architects presented plans for a lushly landscaped plaza that includes a curved wall of pin oak trees, a large central gathering space for markets and food festivals, benches and movable seating along the water, and white stones set into the pavement marking Manhattan's changing shoreline.

"You can start to understand how the water line was moving out and Manhattan was expanding," said Scott Demel, an associate at Rogers Marvel.

Pier A opened in 1886 as the headquarters for the New York Harbor Police and Department of Docks, before later serving as an FDNY fireboat station and workshop. It has sat vacant and closed to the public for more than a decade.

The Battery Park City Authority expects to complete its repairs to the crumbling pier by the end of the year, (http://www.dnainfo.com/new-york/20120522/financial-district/repairs-rotting-pier-will-finish-by-end-of-2012) and then the developers will begin building out its $18 million interior, including an oyster bar, a catering hall, a sitdown restaurant and a tourist information center.

The historic pier building and the new plaza are both scheduled to open in the summer or early fall of 2013.

http://www.dnainfo.com/new-york/20120606/battery-park-city/no-party-boats-at-pier-battery-park-city-residents-say#ixzz1xCaEziph

Ninjahedge
June 8th, 2012, 09:26 AM
Waaah.


We want everything to be fixed up nice, but we do not want anybody to go there but us!

Waaah!


I agree. I HATE tourists, but at the same time, it is more than unfair to revitalize a section of public land and make it accessible, or desirable, for only a small set of locals.

Instead of forbidding the use of the pier for those things, possibly finding a solution to the problems that may arise because of it should be sought.

The easiest way to keep anything bad from happening is to keep everyone away, but that is not a solution.

ZippyTheChimp
June 8th, 2012, 11:17 AM
^
What's your solution?

You could make that same argument for the crowds going to the Statue of Liberty, that denying them access to Battery Park is denying them access to the SOL.

But the long lines that snake though the park, crowd control barriers, and that security tent, make the park less useable not only for locals, but anyone who wants to go to the park but not the SOL.

This little pier is finally going to be used, so the city decides it has to accommodate dinner cruises. Why here? Dinner cruises aren't about going to Battery Park or Pier A; they're about getting on a boat and having dinner on the water.

There are other opportunities to do this, some already in operation, such as at Chelsea Piers. There's another at Pier 40 (http://www.hornblower.com/hce/port/details/ny). Since HRP needs operational revenue, maybe the facilities at Pier 40 should be expanded.

This city blindly stumbles around for any opportunity for revenue, instead of thinking things out.

scumonkey
June 8th, 2012, 04:08 PM
agree 100%
adding those dinner party boats right next to the already big mess that is the S of L white tent fiasco (wasn't that supposed to be moved over to the pier at one time as well :rolleyes:)
would be an even bigger regrettable nightmare than it already is.

Ninjahedge
June 11th, 2012, 10:24 AM
The solution is moderation, which is always the hardest to do.

It is easy to allow free access or very restricted access. It is hard to gauge it so that the pier can be used to generate revenue without ruining it for anybody else.

ZippyTheChimp
June 11th, 2012, 10:59 AM
Maybe the solution to the problem is to not create the problem.

Ninjahedge
June 11th, 2012, 11:30 AM
And the solution to development is not to develop?

Realistically Zip. They will develop it so long as NYC is desirable.

Are the party-boats really that bad? If they are, how can they be regulated so that they aren’t w/o restricting them completely?

How do you get a “wine bar” rather than a strip club?

ZippyTheChimp
June 11th, 2012, 11:45 AM
We're talking about Pier A, not development in general.

Why is something that may be "really that bad" have to be at Pier A?

Your last sentence is completely non-sequitur; the space is already regulated.

Ninjahedge
June 11th, 2012, 12:32 PM
Not completely non-sequitur. More of an exaggeration for the point of illustration.

And my question IS are they "really that bad"? I did not say they were, but the assertion of the people objecting to them leads one to believe that they think they are.

The space is regulated, and I believe (unless I read it wrong) that someone wants to change it so they can run dinner-boats out from Pier A (or get permits for it). So long as they limit size, dock times, and provide supervision/security around the pier during these times why would it be such a terrible thing?

ZippyTheChimp
June 11th, 2012, 01:17 PM
Why are you asking me if they're really that bad? I My answer is obvious, or I wouldn't have posted #112.

My question to you was, "What's your solution?" It assumes you have some knowledge of the conditions, and can make a valid argument.

To me, "not such a terrible thing" should apply to a situation that is necessary, and we just have to live with it. That's not the case here. The pier is already under development with a lease; read the posts on the preceding page.

And the last thing we need here is even more security.

BPC
June 11th, 2012, 01:51 PM
As a local resident, I don't really mind if they use Pier A for dinner cruises. I just would like to see it completed before I die. What I do mind are party boats -- wherever they dock -- which blare concert-level music out the sides far beyond than anything that would be permitted in the City. On Saturday night, one floated by at around midnight and was so loud I could not hear my own TV for several minutes, even though I had the windows closed and the AC on. And at least I was up. Anyone trying to sleep at that time would not have succeeded.

ZippyTheChimp
September 21st, 2012, 08:53 PM
Looks like they're finally getting serious.

http://imageshack.us/a/img834/2144/piera13c.th.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/834/piera13c.jpg/) http://imageshack.us/a/img607/1558/piera14c.th.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/607/piera14c.jpg/)

Merry
April 4th, 2013, 06:49 AM
Pier A Will Have Oysters, Beer, And More By 2014—Finally

by Hana R. Alberts

http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/515c7757f92ea16c94032bbd/E.jpg (http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/515c7757f92ea16c94032bc0/E.jpg)
http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/515c775cf92ea16c94032bd7/Exterior.jpg (http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/515c775bf92ea16c94032bd4/Exterior.jpg) http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/515c7f57f92ea10b7c0070f6/PierA-Slides-7.jpg (http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/515c7f56f92ea10b7c0070f3/PierA-Slides-7.jpg) http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/515c775df92ea16c94032be1/SecondFloorResto.jpg (http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/515c775df92ea16c94032bde/SecondFloorResto.jpg) http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/515c775ff92ea16c94032beb/OysterBar.jpg (http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/515c775ef92ea16c94032be8/OysterBar.jpg) http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/515c7f58f92ea10b7c007103/PierA-Slides-3.jpg (http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/515c7f58f92ea10b7c007100/PierA-Slides-3.jpg) http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/515c7f5af92ea10b7c00710d/PierA-Slides-2.jpg (http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/515c7f59f92ea10b7c00710a/PierA-Slides-2.jpg)http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/515c775af92ea16c94032bcd/Aerial.jpg (http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/515c7759f92ea16c94032bca/Aerial.jpg)

The new plans for long-delayed Pier A are at last taking shape. At least, after being labeled "doomed" (http://ny.curbed.com/archives/2009/07/24/pier_a_doomed.php) and suffering setbacks (http://ny.curbed.com/archives/2009/02/10/renovation_of_battery_park_pier_suffers_new_setbac k.php) and massive cost increases (http://ny.curbed.com/archives/2012/01/04/pier_a_in_f_condition.php), plus recovering from Sandy-inflicted damage, we've got some new renderings to go on. Hey, it's better than the big ol' super creepy abandoned bit of nothing (http://ny.curbed.com/archives/2010/02/09/checking_out_the_creepiness_of_battery_parks_pier_ a.php) jutting out into New York Harbor we've got now.

The landmarked 127-year-old pier will be shored up, stable, and ready for construction by June, according to DNAinfo (http://www.dnainfo.com/new-york/20130403/battery-park-city/renderings-released-for-long-delayed-pier-now-opening-may-2014). And then, $18 million and one more year later, it will be home to a pedestrian plaza, outdoor seating, and a three-story building with a casual oyster bar, a high-end restaurant, a catering hall, and a tourist information center.

The Poulakakos family, which runs several FiDi restaurants, is joining forces with a group of developers on the project. They were handed the reins by the Battery Park City Authority, and the coalition tapped Green Light Architecture (http://www.greenlightarchitecture.com) for the new designs pictured above. In a Community Board 1 meeting last night, one of the Poulakakos' partners said that the Pier A eateries will join an endless number of sustainable brethren in offering local and regional food. A nice touch: even if you don't want to order oysters, or book a table at the more fancy second-floor restaurant, the ground level of the pier will be open to all, and there will be plenty of seating around the building.

Renderings Released for Long-Delayed Pier A, Now Opening In May 2014 (http://www.dnainfo.com/new-york/20130403/battery-park-city/renderings-released-for-long-delayed-pier-now-opening-may-2014#ixzz2PQd6CqSk) [DNAinfo]

http://ny.curbed.com/archives/2013/04/03/pier_a_will_have_oysters_beer_and_more_by_2014fina lly.php#more

ZippyTheChimp
June 5th, 2013, 01:28 PM
Paint job

http://imageshack.us/a/img29/796/piera15c.jpg

WTF. Ls that overspray on the roof?

http://imageshack.us/a/img11/7996/piera16c.jpg

The old roofing was painted iron. Everything has been replaced with copper except the clock tower. I don't know if they're going to leave the tower roof as is, or replace it later.

http://imageshack.us/a/img706/8849/piera17c.jpg

lofter1
June 5th, 2013, 03:05 PM
Looks like they sprayed the edge of the copper roof with that new paint :eek:

ZippyTheChimp
June 22nd, 2013, 08:04 PM
Interior finish work being done. This is as far along as the pier has been in...I can't seem to remember.

http://imageshack.us/a/img32/1739/ngxy.jpg

That's the good news. Bad news on the other side (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/showthread.php?t=9797&page=2&p=432303&viewfull=1#post432303)

Merry
June 25th, 2013, 06:21 AM
Pier A Is Finally Getting Restored; An Oyster Bar Is On The Way

by Hana R. Alberts

http://ny.curbed.com/uploads/Screen%20Shot%202013-06-24%20at%202.30.39%20PM-thumb.png (http://ny.curbed.com/uploads/Screen%20Shot%202013-06-24%20at%202.30.39%20PM.png)
[Pier A getting all shored up, courtesy of H3 Hardy Collaboration Architecture (http://www.h3hc.com/#/720).]

Hot on the heels of our in-depth look at the past, present, and future of the city's piers (http://ny.curbed.com/archives/2013/06/19/from_cargo_to_kayaks_new_york_citys_piers_then_and _now.php) last week, H3 Hardy Collaboration Architecture passed along some up-to-date shots (http://www.h3hc.com/#/720) of the restoration of Battery Park's long-stalled Pier A. It's had a bit of an identity crisis in the past—Would it be a museum honoring Italian-Americans (http://ny.curbed.com/archives/2010/12/08/is_the_history_of_italy_the_future_of_pier_a.php)? Um, no, it would just remain uber-creepy and falling apart! (http://ny.curbed.com/archives/2010/02/09/checking_out_the_creepiness_of_battery_parks_pier_ a.php)—but now its $18 million restoration is well underway. That means the 127-year-old landmark is en route to its future incarnation (http://ny.curbed.com/archives/2013/04/03/pier_a_will_have_oysters_beer_and_more_by_2014fina lly.php) as dining and recreation hub with a pedestrian plaza, outdoor seating, and a three-story building with a casual oyster bar, a high-end restaurant, a catering hall, and a tourist information center. Far from "doomed (http://ny.curbed.com/archives/2009/07/24/pier_a_doomed.php)," no sirree, this baby won't be sinking into the harbor anytime soon when H3's done with it! It'll be beige with green trim and a green roof, looking just as spiffy as when it served as home base to the Department of Docks and the Harbor Police, except folks will be slurping crustaceans and throwing back some brews and looking at our bustling waterways instead of, you know, protecting them.

http://ny.curbed.com/uploads/Screen%20Shot%202013-06-24%20at%202.31.04%20PM.png
http://ny.curbed.com/uploads/Screen%20Shot%202013-06-24%20at%202.30.53%20PM.png

And, lest you've forgotten in the years that this project's dragged on, here's what the final product will look like (more images here (http://ny.curbed.com/archives/2013/04/03/pier_a_will_have_oysters_beer_and_more_by_2014fina lly.php)):

http://ny.curbed.com/uploads/Screen%20Shot%202013-06-24%20at%202.29.37%20PM-thumb.png (http://ny.curbed.com/uploads/Screen%20Shot%202013-06-24%20at%202.29.37%20PM.png)

Pier A (http://www.h3hc.com/#/720) [H3 Hugh Hardy Collaboration Architecture]

http://ny.curbed.com/archives/2013/06/24/pier_a_is_finally_getting_restored_an_oyster_bar_i s_on_the_way.php#more

ZippyTheChimp
July 5th, 2013, 09:18 PM
http://imageshack.us/a/img10/7026/zmd6.jpg

http://imageshack.us/a/img841/4647/yj7v.jpg

Park entrance closed to construct the plaza.

http://imageshack.us/a/img827/9350/b4fs.jpg

Ninjahedge
July 8th, 2013, 02:58 PM
Sweet.

ZippyTheChimp
March 31st, 2014, 11:09 PM
Preview: Mega-Eating Drinking Complex That's Opening on Downtown's Pier A

http://www.tribecatrib.com/sites/default/files/imagecache/standaloneslideshow/Pier%20A-Danny-W.jpg
Bar designer Danny McDonald in Pier A’s first floor, next to what will be an oyster bar and shucking stations. The vast floor can hold more than 600 people.
Photo: Carl Glassman/Tribeca Trib

By AMANDA WOODS
Posted Mar. 31, 2014

Historic Pier A, for decades the victim of neglect and disrepair, will return to life in June as a mega-eating and drinking complex, including multiple bars, restaurants, a lounge, a tourist information center and a gallery of historical photos.

The man in charge of the interior transformation of this 32,000-square-foot shell of a building is Danny McDonald, a 48-year-old bar designer and native of Ireland. Starting life in New York as a 17-year-old bartender, he has gone on to design numerous bars and restaurants, including Harry’s, Ulysses and Grace, all owned by the Poulakakos family, the lease holders for Pier A.

McDonald said he took pains to give the 126-year-old pier a vintage look, from a collection of 170 retrofitted steamship pressure gauges that will glow above the long first floor to the Gilded Age-style stained glass above the main lobby. McDonald even helped name the rooms, most evoking the harbor’s history.

“It’s a delight to stay very close to the story of this pier,” McDonald said. “All you have to do is re-tell it and pay it the historical respect that it deserves.”

The Trib toured the unfinished interior with McDonald, and here is what he says is coming.


http://www.tribecatrib.com/sites/default/files/images/Pier%20A-Level%201-725.jpg

FIRST LEVEL
THE GALLERY
This is the main entrance, one of 10 entrances into the building. In the floor, a large letter “A,” made of military steel, is embedded in the concrete floor. The entrance is lit by hand-made Bevolo glass and steel lighting fixtures. Historical photos will hang on the wall.

INFORMATION CENTER
Visitors can get information provided by the Downtown Alliance, with additional material from the South Street Seaport Museum.

LOBBY TO THE SECOND FLOOR
Elevator and glass staircase take visitors to the second floor, with a glass opening to the staircase. McDonald calls this section “a tribute to the Gilded Age—the 1880s and 1890s—with a high level of stained wood finish and stained glass on the ceiling.” He says the area is meant to invite people upstairs, to let them see that Pier A “is not just about down*stairs. There’s also a second level.”

THE LONG HALL
This room is true to its name and, along with the Oyster Bar at the other end, can hold more than 600 people. McDonald pictures 200 to 300 drinking and eating customers in the informal setting of Pier A’s largest dining room. He plans to hang 170 antique pressure gauges from the ceiling. The dials of the round gauges, once belonging to 19th-century steam*ships, will be retrofitted to light up from the inside. (“If it happened to be St. Patrick’s Day, we might give them a little bit of green tint.”)

The wooden ceiling will be new but, like much of the pier’s interior, will be made to look as old as the pier itself.

“When you walk in,” McDonald says, “it’s going to feel like this could have been here all along.”


http://www.tribecatrib.com/sites/default/files/images/PierA-Level-1-rendering-w.jpg
Rendering of the Long Hall, with oyster stations at the far end.
Rendering: Green Light Architecture


OYSTER BAR
Oysters will be served throughout the Long Hall and shucked and steamed at five stations of the oyster bar. At the far west end of this area are the winding stairs that lead to the clock tower. The stairs, not legal for their intended use, will become a glass-enclosed refrigerated “wine tower” three stories high. “It’s going to be one of a kind,” McDonald says.


http://www.tribecatrib.com/sites/default/files/images/Pier%20A-Level%202.jpg

SECOND LEVEL
THE COMMISSIONER'S ROOM
This room, with its original teak walls, was the setting for Don Corleone’s office in “Godfather II.” “It’s that kind of place you say to the guy at the door, ‘We’re going to be three for the parlor,’” says McDonald. The bar can hold 50 people and opens onto a balcony with a view of the harbor.

THE FOUR DINING ROOMS
There are four private rooms on this floor—Grace, Patrol, New Yorker and Liberty—each named with a local historical reference in mind.

THE GALLEY
This is an open kitchen with three chef’s tables. McDonald says it’s the only part of the pier that is designed with a contemporary rather than historical look. There is sizable wall space to hang contemporary art from the Hudson Valley. “Why not celebrate local artists?” he asks rhetorically.

THE STATEROOM
Next to the “galley” is a dining room that will have six tables (including one in the galley) but can also seat up to 60 people together.
“It becomes one huge dining table right in the center of the room, which is great,” McDonald said. “You don’t get to do that every day.”

THE HARRISON ROOM
This bar will have a big stained glass window with the letter “A,” a visible feature of the building’s exterior. The room provides an unusual view up West Street to 1 World Trade Center.


http://www.tribecatrib.com/sites/default/files/images/Pier%20A-2nd%20floorrendering.jpg
Rendering of the Harrison Room, one of the bars on the second level. Rendering:
Green Light Architecture

THIRD LEVEL (Not shown)
"THE LOFT" EVENT SPACE
The third level runs about a third of the length of the pier building and contains a large room for a wide variety of special events.

http://www.tribecatrib.com/content/preview-mega-eating-drinking-complex-thats-opening-downtowns-pier
Tribeca Trib

The Long Hall looks like a Babe Bar.
With oysters.

lofter1
April 1st, 2014, 09:15 AM
This looks fantastic and is going to be a huge success.

If the nearby tented bunker for Homeland Security would get lost, this area will be totally good.

Howard Hughes Corporation might take a cue from this for South Street Seaport Pier 17 & other nearby plans. I'll be willing to bet that what's going in at Pier A is what folks - NYers & visitors - really want, rather than some slick new glass shopping mall on the water.

ZippyTheChimp
April 1st, 2014, 10:59 AM
The nabe always wanted the tent to go away. Instead, we got a bigger one.

It was the influence of NYPD, which became too overreaching under Bloomberg and Kelly. Besides stop-and-frisk, there was the WTC site and tower 1. Even Charging Bull was barricaded for two and a half years, only freed last month.

Maybe changes coming. Bratton has already taken shots at his predecessor.

stache
April 1st, 2014, 11:25 AM
I'm not holding my breath -

ZippyTheChimp
April 13th, 2014, 09:53 PM
http://imageshack.com/a/img842/2284/lb4s.jpg

http://imageshack.com/a/img827/2892/gkyo.jpg

ZippyTheChimp
August 11th, 2014, 11:46 PM
http://imageshack.com/a/img745/8687/FvCgIC.jpg

http://imageshack.com/a/img909/9766/vrDgt1.jpg

http://imageshack.com/a/img674/6465/1dxUFA.jpg

http://imageshack.com/a/img902/3128/Vpc7ym.jpg

ZippyTheChimp
September 13th, 2014, 10:52 AM
A small section of the plaza has been opened as a detour, so the sidewalk can be rebuilt.

http://imageshack.com/a/img631/1858/KkA0AL.jpg


http://imageshack.com/a/img673/4929/a2q3I0.jpg


http://imageshack.com/a/img905/8814/dbnMoy.jpg


http://imageshack.com/a/img904/6986/Z3xJEo.jpg

Merry
November 26th, 2014, 04:53 AM
Wow!


Inside the Battery's Century-Old Pier A, Open for the First Time

by Hana R. Alberts

http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb8ccf92ea1479d011600/_MG_1482.jpg (http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb8cdf92ea1479d011603/_MG_1482.jpg)
All photos by Max Touhey (http://touheyphotography.com/).

At the southernmost tip of West Street, a pier juts out into New York Harbor. Until just a few weeks ago, it was fenced in, and closed off to the public. But after a years-long renovation and restoration process, Pier A—a 128-year-old structure with a handsome clocktower that once served (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/City_Pier_A) the docks and harbor police as well as the city's fire department—is open to the public for the very first time in its long history. To say that the makeover has been hotly anticipated (http://ny.curbed.com/places/pier-a) would be an understatement. Taking the pier from decrepit and abandoned (http://ny.curbed.com/archives/2010/02/09/checking_out_the_creepiness_of_battery_parks_pier_ a.php) to a three-story, flood-prepared building with beautifully-designed bars and restaurants (run by the Poulakakos group (http://hphnyc.com/)) as well as a visitor's center, plus a public promenade, plaza, and ample seating, cost around $40 million, with the Economic Development Council footing most of the bill. But boy, is she pretty. And those views of the Statue of Liberty aren't bad either, especially in the sunset.

http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb8bdf92ea1479d0115d7/_MG_1477.jpg (http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb8bef92ea1479d0115da/_MG_1477.jpg)
The pier is south of West Street, west of Battery Place, and sandwiched on its other sides by Battery Park and Wagner Park.

http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb8d2f92ea1479d011614/_MG_1470.jpg (http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb8d4f92ea1479d011617/_MG_1470.jpg)
There's Lady Liberty, off to the left (southwest). Pier A is a landmark, so the exterior restoration had to hold up to the LPC's scrutiny; it looks original, but better. (Remember, it was in a seriously sorry state (http://ny.curbed.com/archives/2010/02/09/checking_out_the_creepiness_of_battery_parks_pier_ a.php) just four years ago.)

http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb8c8f92ea1479d0115f6/_MG_1473.jpg (http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb8caf92ea1479d0115f9/_MG_1473.jpg)
The area in front of the pier, and to its sides, is a 34,000-square-foot public plaza with seating.

http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb8dcf92ea1479d011632/_MG_1448.jpg (http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb8def92ea1479d011635/_MG_1448.jpg)
The seating and pedestrian promenade continue around the entire perimeter of the building. In the warmer months, the outdoor tables will be used by restaurant patrons, but they are always publicly accessible.

http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb8e0f92ea1479d01163c/_MG_1450.jpg (http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb8e2f92ea1479d01163f/_MG_1450.jpg)
The most recent spate of restoration work on Pier A began in 2008, when the Battery Park City Authority got involved in its revitalization. First came repointing and repair work, as well as reinforcing (via steel columns and beams) the underwater structure that holds up the whole thing. Along with that came a total replacement of its deck—the actual floor of the pier.

http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb8d9f92ea1479d011628/_MG_1454.jpg (http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb8daf92ea1479d01162b/_MG_1454.jpg)
The last phase was above-water; the core and the shell of the building got their turn at a sprucing-up. Peeling away building layers led to a sad discovery: extensive water damage. The pier was essentially rotting. So architects worked to basically replace the entire building envelope and build a new roof, all while keeping the facade looking the same (because it's a landmark).

http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb8f4f92ea1479d011670/_MG_1411.jpg (http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb8f5f92ea1479d011673/_MG_1411.jpg)
That stage of the work was just about two months from completion in October of 2012, when Superstorm Sandy hit. The several feet of water that washed through the pier building, all over structural elements that had just been shored up or replaced, set the whole project back about seven months.

http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb901f92ea11ac0000305/_MG_1410.jpg (http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb902f92ea11ac0000308/_MG_1410.jpg) Repair work began, and some design changes were made as a result of the storm. Even more mechanical equipment and elevator systems were put on higher floors, for example. That took until July of 2013.

http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb8eff92ea1479d011665/_MG_1405.jpg (http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb8f1f92ea1479d011668/_MG_1405.jpg)
More seating at the end of the pier.

http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb8d6f92ea1479d01161e/_MG_1458.jpg (http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb8d7f92ea1479d011621/_MG_1458.jpg)
And now, we go inside.

http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546ea846f92ea1333f01c1b4/_MG_1307.jpg (http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546ea847f92ea1333f01c1b7/_MG_1307.jpg)
The ground level is an oyster bar with open seating, including at several counters.

http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb925f92ea11ac000036b/_MG_1381.jpg (http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb927f92ea11ac000036e/_MG_1381.jpg)
The clocktower got completely restored—bells tolling on the hour and all for the first time what operators think could be decades... even as early as the 1930s. But inside, below the guts of the clock, is the restaurants' wine cellar, punctuated by a spiral staircase.

http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb8c4f92ea1479d0115eb/_MG_1428.jpg (http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb8c6f92ea1479d0115ee/_MG_1428.jpg)
At the front of the second floor, looking out onto the public plaza and towards the Financial District, is called the Harrison. It has more wood paneling and clubby seats, and is meant to harken back to bars where the area's power brokers would dally. Its design is meant to evokes the cabin of a boat.

http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb8ebf92ea1479d01165a/_MG_1434.jpg (http://cdn.cstatic.net/images/gridfs/546eb8edf92ea1479d01165d/_MG_1434.jpg)
And there's more stained glass here, plus the preponderance of 'A's.

Many more pics at Curbed (http://ny.curbed.com/archives/2014/11/25/inside_the_batterys_centuryold_pier_a_open_for_the _first_time.php)

Stroika
November 27th, 2014, 09:27 PM
It's absolutely fantastic. I was in there the other weekend and can't wait for an excuse to go back.