Mayor Mike Bloomberg joined Parks & Recreation Commissioner Veronica White, New York City Economic Development Corporation President Seth W. Pinsky, Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz, Council Member Steve Levin and President and CEO of New York Public Radio Laura R. Walker to cut the ribbon on a $12 million redevelopment of WNYC Transmitter Park along the East River in Brooklyn.
The project includes an esplanade for passive recreation, and 1.6-acres of open space to provide residents and visitors with increased access to the Greenpoint waterfront. The transformation of WNYC Transmitter Park builds on the 2005 Greenpoint-Williamsburg rezoning which creates a framework to provide continuous public access to the area’s shorefront. Located on the site of the former WNYC radio transmission towers, the new park includes a new overlook to the south, new seating, and a waterfront esplanade that will provide connections to adjacent sites. A pedestrian bridge was built across an excavated historic ferry slip and restored as a wetland accessible to visitors. The center of the park includes a large, open lawn with a separate children’s play area featuring a nautical theme to reflect the site’s context. It also includes a spray shower and nature gardens. A newly constructed recreational pier at the end of Kent Street will also open at the end of this year.
“WNYC Transmitter Park is the City’s newest addition to a rapidly greening waterfront in North Brooklyn,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “The site has been transformed from a former ferry terminal and home of the old WNYC radio towers, into a destination for families to play, picnic, and enjoy beautiful views.”
“Our Administration has made revitalizing old infrastructure and recasting it in ways that make sense for New Yorkers today a priority,” said First Deputy Mayor Patricia E. Harris. “WNYC Transmitter Park is also part of our ongoing effort to convert much of North Brooklyn’s shoreline into a network of interconnected public spaces. New York City’s waterfront and parkland are vital resources, and we’re determined to make them more accessible and welcoming for New Yorkers and our many visitors.”
“Mayor Bloomberg has made improving public access to the waterfront in all five boroughs a top priority of his economic development strategy, and WNYC Transmitter Park is the latest example of the success of that strategy,” Deputy Mayor Robert K. Steel said. “Greenpoint-Williamsburg is one of the fastest-growing, most vibrant neighborhoods in all of New York City and with this new park it will be an even more attractive place for people to live, work and play.”
“We are thrilled to cut the ribbon on this brand new park in Greenpoint,” said Commissioner White. “It’s an exciting new option for the New Yorkers who live nearby to come down to the water right in their own backyard. And it is a terrific addition to the city as a whole and the latest example of our commitment to bring stunning green spaces and recreation to New Yorkers, visitors to our city, and the North Brooklyn community. We are grateful to Mayor Bloomberg, the City Council and federal and state grants for providing $12 million towards this project, and to EDC for managing the site’s redevelopment.”
“The opening of WNYC Transmitter Park is another important milestone in our efforts to increase public access to the Brooklyn waterfront, supporting the continued revitalization of Greenpoint, just as the Bloomberg Administration is doing in neighborhoods all across the City,” said New York City Economic Development Corporation President Seth W. Pinsky.
“There’s no doubt that visitors will be flocking to Transmitter Park to take advantage of Brooklyn’s beautiful waterfront, an esplanade, play area for children and stunning views of the ‘outer borough’ of Manhattan,” said Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz. “Bravo to Mayor Bloomberg, Parks & Recreation Commissioner and Brooklyn native Veronica White, Brooklyn Parks Commissioner Kevin Jeffrey, the New York City Economic Development Corporation and president Seth Pinsky and Council Member Steve Levin for turning Transmitter Park into another ‘urban emerald’ in Brooklyn’s park system.”
“The opening of Transmitter Park is just one more example of how the City is revitalizing our waterfront and increasing its public access so more New Yorker's can enjoy one of our city's greatest natural gems,” said Council Speaker Christine C. Quinn. “We can and should continue to assess how to best utilize precious green and waterfront space for leisure and economic purposes and for the overall good of New York City.”
“The opening of WNYC Transmitter Park is an important milestone in the transformation of Brooklyn’s waterfront,” said Council Member Stephen Levin. “I would like to thank Mayor Bloomberg, Parks Commissioner White, and EDC President Pinsky and everyone who has worked so hard to ensure that Greenpoint residents have access to open space, especially along the waterfront. I’m thrilled that everyone in the neighborhood will be able to enjoy this great new park for the last warm days this season, and of course, for many more summers to come.”
“The opening of WNYC Transmitter Park to the public brings with it much pride,” said President and CEO of New York Public Radio Laura R. Walker. “This place is a part of our station’s rich history of public service in New York. When Mayor La Guardia came into office in 1934, WNYC was being transmitted from the 25th floor of the Municipal Building in downtown New York City. Ground was broken here in November, 1935. This location enabled us to build a service of value for our city that is still cherished today. Thank you for restoring this special piece of New York’s history in such a meaningful and happy way.”
NYCEDC oversaw the construction of the park, and upon completion of construction, NYCEDC transferred operations to Parks. Funding for the $12 million project includes $9.6 million in city capital funds allocated by Mayor Bloomberg, $500,000 allocated by the New York City Council, more than $1.1 million grant from the Federal Highway Administration and $370,000 in grants from the New York State Environmental Protection Fund, administered by the New York State Department of State. WNYC Transmitter Park was designed by EDAW/McLaren Engineering Group/WXY architecture + urban design with The LiRo Group as resident engineer, and Phoenix Marine Co., Inc. as contractor.
This initiative is part of the Waterfront Vision and Enhancement Strategy (WAVES), a citywide strategy launched by Mayor Bloomberg and Speaker Quinn, which lays out a sustainable blueprint for the City’s more than 500 miles of shoreline. WAVES has two core components: Vision 2020: The New York City Comprehensive Waterfront Plan, released a year ago, which established long-term goals for the next decade and beyond, and the New York City Waterfront Action Agenda, which set forth priority initiatives to be implemented by the end of 2013, many of which are being realized. Together, the initiatives provide a blueprint for the City’s waterfront and waterways, and focus on the following categories: open space and recreation, the working waterfront, housing and economic development, natural habitats, climate change adaptation and waterborne transportation.