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Brooklyn Bridge Park Corporation Pier 6

Brooklyn Bridge Park’s Committee on Alternatives to Housing Releases Draft Report by its Consultant, Bay Area Economics

February 22, 2011

Public Hearing to Solicit Comments to be held on Thursday, March 31

Brooklyn Bridge Park’s Committee on Alternatives to Housing today released a draft report by Bay Area Economics, its external consultant. The report can be found on-line at www.brooklynbridgeparknyc.org.

The draft report is the synthesis of research on international best practices, community feedback from written and oral testimony delivered at two public hearings, and interviews with key stakeholders from a variety of sectors. BAE examined nine alternatives to the park’s current financing in the draft report and evaluates their potential to deliver revenues based on established parameters adopted by the Committee on Alternatives to Housing.

This release marks the beginning of a 60-day comment period during which the public is invited to provide feedback on the draft report. During this period a public hearing will be held to receive feedback on the draft report. This public hearing is scheduled for Thursday, March 31 at 6:00pm at St. Francis College in the Founder’s Auditorium on the first floor. Testimony will be taken on the findings of the draft CAH report. Written comments can be emailed to the consultants at bbptestimony@bae1.com for those that cannot attend the public hearing. Following the collection of all comments, a final report is expected to be released in Spring 2011. The Committee on Alternatives to Housing will then meet to determine which, if any, recommendations they will make to the full Brooklyn Bridge Park Board of Directors regarding alternative funding sources.

Brooklyn Bridge Park Corporation, known as Brooklyn Bridge Park, is the not-for-profit entity responsible for the planning, construction, maintenance and operation of Brooklyn Bridge Park, an 85-acre sustainable waterfront park stretching 1.3 miles along Brooklyn’s East River shoreline. More information is available on the park’s website: www.brooklynbridgeparknyc.org.

Brooklyn Bridge Park is one of the nine waterfront destinations that comprise NYHarborWay, an initiative of the Bloomberg Administration to make the New York Harbor a major recreational destination for New Yorkers and visitors. Spearheaded by NYC & Company, the initiative eventually will connect the nine major waterfront points of interest by ferry or bike greenways. In addition, NYHarborWay will develop a cohesive programming, marketing and communications platform which will drive visitation to the nine waterfront sites. In addition to Brooklyn Bridge Park, the destinations are Governors Island, Hudson River Park, The Battery, Ellis Island, Liberty Island, Atlantic Basin, the East River Esplanade and Liberty State Park.

Background
Since 2002, through a Memorandum of Understanding between Mayor Bloomberg and Governor Pataki, there has been agreement that Brooklyn Bridge Park’s maintenance costs must be self-sustaining.

On March 8, 2010, in anticipation of the transfer of control of Brooklyn Bridge Park to a City controlled entity, the City of New York, State Senator Daniel Squadron and State Assemblymember Joan Millman executed a Memorandum of Understanding that called for the creation of a Subcommittee on Alternatives to Housing (now called the Committee on Alternatives to Housing) that would oversee an analysis of potential revenue sources that may replace all or a portion of the revenues currently projected from the Pier 6 and John Street residential sites for the funding of the Park’s maintenance and operations budget.

The Memorandum of Understanding specified that no alternative revenue source will be analyzed unless it meets the following two threshold parameters:

  1. The alternative source does not, in any way, displace revenue to which the City is otherwise entitled, and
  2. The timing of, and level of risk associated with, the revenue projected to be generated by such source is consistent with the projected timing of, and risk associated with, the revenue projected to be generated by the residential development at the John Street and Pier 6 sites.

The Memorandum of Understanding also outlined a specific process for the analysis which has guided the Brooklyn Bridge Park Corporation and the Committee on Alternatives to Housing over the last several months. In accordance with the Memorandum of Understanding, the following actions have been taken:

  • Brooklyn Bridge Park authorized the creation of the Committee on Alternatives to Housing on 9/22/10
  • The Committee on Alternatives to Housing met and authorized Brooklyn Bridge Park to release an Request For Proposals for an external consultant to aid in the analysis of alternate funding sources on 9/22/10
  • The Committee on Alternatives to Housing authorized Brooklyn Bridge Park to enter into a consulting contract with Bay Area Economics (BAE) pursuant to the October 21, 2010 Request for Proposals.
  • The Committee on Alternatives to Housing held two public hearings to solicit input and feedback from the community on November 30, 2010 and December 9, 2010, and accepted written statements until December 13th.
  • The Committee on Alternatives to Housing authorized its consultant, Bay Area Economics (BAE), to analyze nine potential funding sources for the park on December 20, 2010.

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