Curious about the status of the Greenpoint Boathouse & Environmental Education Center?
We are pleased to give an update on recent developments!
First, a little background:
- GWAPP proposed the construction of a boathouse and environmental center on Newtown Creek as an applicant for funds from the Newtown Creek Environmental Benefit Projects (EBP) and, through an extensive community process, was selected as the top priority project.
- Two years ago, while negotiations were under way with the Greenpoint Manufacturing and Design Center (the originally proposed boathouse home) the North Brooklyn Boat Club (an all-volunteer, non-profit community group dedicated to safe and responsible human-powered boating for the public) was given free access to a strip of land, owned by Broadway Stages, on Ash Street near the Pulaski Bridge. The club’s goal with this generous donation was to develop programming and membership so that when the time came to occupy the boathouse, the club could hit the ground running. This has been hugely successful – with funding from the Hudson River Foundation the club acquired boats and safety gear and began offering public paddles from the site. We now have a strong and well trained group of trip leaders, a vibrant membership, collaborations with a number of scientist and environmental projects, and we throw pretty decent parties, if we do say so ourselves. You can view a short video about this beginning here.
- Unfortunately, after almost three years, we were unable to come to agreeable terms with the GMDC and began looking for other suitable locations. A number sites and proposals were brought forward and after careful consideration, it was deemed that building on the current location, next to the Pulaski bridge, would be the most desirable, feasible, and sustainable.
What comes next?
We hope to finalize the agreement with Broadway Stages and start construction of the first recreational boathouse for Greenpoint and Williamsburg.
The entire process will continue to be administered and supervised by the City Parks Foundation which requires that any and all EBP funds only be applied to the Boathouse and Environmental Education Center elements of the facility – which will include: boat and safety equipment storage, environmental education center with facilities for students and scientists studying the ecology and history of the waterways, boatbuilding, and nautical crafts workshop, and other community spaces.
Anyone interested in further information about plans as they develop please contact us at (northbrooklynboatclub at gmail dot com).
In Aqua Sanita!