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NYC to invest $75M on Bushwick Inlet Park

December 28, 2021 Brooklyn Eagle Staff
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Mayor Bill de Blasio, Councilmember Stephen Levin, Brooklyn Parks Commissioner Martin Maher and others earlier this week announced a long-awaited investment of $75 million toward the development of the CitiStorage parcel of Bushwick Inlet Park in North Brooklyn.

The city promised community members a park 16 years ago, and already 3.5 acres are complete and open to the public, featuring a multi-purpose field and a building for community activities with a state-of-the-art green roof which doubles as a seating area.

“From the buzzing playground on weekday mornings to the lively club soccer matches on weeknights and the crowded Smorgasburg food festival on the weekends, there is always something happening at Bushwick Inlet Park,” commented Senator Charles Schumer.

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Development of the CitiStorage parcel, however, was delayed in 2015-16 by a price war between the city and the then-owner of the site, Norman Brodsky, as detailed in the pages of the Eagle at that time.

At one point, Brooklyn Borough President (and now Mayor-elect) Eric Adams, U.S. Rep. Carolyn Maloney and residents of Greenpoint and Williamsburg slept in tents in the driving train to spotlight the city’s offer to pay $100 million for the land, the Eagle reported. Finally, in December 2016, Brodsky and the city came to terms.

“Bushwick Inlet Park shows how much can change when a community stands together,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “This $75 million investment will ensure 27 acres of world-class green space on the North Brooklyn waterfront are completed for families to enjoy for generations to come.”

“For years, Greenpoint and Williamsburg residents have fought to secure open space along the waterfront. I have been proud to lend my voice to that fight, supporting this project with critically-needed capital funds and even leading a sleep-out with other leaders in 2016 to ensure that the City lived up to its commitments. Today, we are taking another major step toward completing Bushwick Inlet Park and ensuring North Brooklyn residents have a world-class place for healthy recreation and relaxation right in their backyard,” said Mayor-elect Eric Adams.

“I am very grateful that Mayor de Blasio had continued his dedication to fully funding and building out Bushwick Inlet Park into his final months in office. This $75 million allocation of capital funds will ensure that this long-promised park, the jewel of the Williamsburg-Greenpoint community, will be completed,” said Levin.

Maloney commented, “I fought for the first phase of the park when Borough President — now Mayor-elect — Eric Adams and I slept out overnight in the space, and I will not stop fighting for the completion of the park until the ribbon is cut on the full build of the park.”

State Senator Brian Kavanagh said, “Bushwick Inlet Park is a vital green space long-promised to a community with a rich tradition of environmentalism, but not nearly enough parkland or green open spaces. I thank Mayor Bill de Blasio and City Councilmember Steve Levin for following through on the promise of this project and delivering this critical funding—a huge victory and an incredible testament to the determined advocacy efforts of so many residents and community leaders.”

The $75 million in new funds, combined with $17 million previously allocated and $1 million in discretionary funding from the City Council, brings the total invested in park development to more than $90 million. These funds will go toward the demolition of the former CitiStorage warehouse, and design and construction of the next phases of the multi-phase build-out of the park.

The CitiStorage site is one of six parcels that make up Bushwick Inlet Park, the centerpiece of the Greenpoint-Williamsburg Waterfront. The newest section to be renovated, 50 Kent, will open to the public in early 2022. All of the parcels of land required for the park have all been purchased by the city and are in varying stages of remediation and development. Upon completion, the park will add more than 25 acres of greenspace to the Greenpoint-Williamsburg community.

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