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BID & City Announce $20M for DUMBO Streets, Pearl St Triangle

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At last night’s Annual Meeting of the DUMBO Improvement District, Deputy Mayor Robert Steel announced a huge commitment of funds for DUMBO streets by the City: $20 million for a second phase of reconstruction of DUMBO’s historic Belgian block streets and the centuries-old pipes below them. The funds will also be used to permanently build out the Pearl Street Triangle to create a world-class plaza space between the Pearl Street Triangle and the adjacent Archway under the Manhattan Bridge. The first phase of work, covering Water and Washington Streets, will be completed this month.

The DUMBO Improvement District has been a long time advocate for the streets project and will serve as the community partner for the DOT in its design. The funding, included in the FY13 and FY14 budgets, is in addition to $1.25M for DUMBO streets in FY12 provided by Speaker Christine Quinn and Council Member Steve Levin and $1M from Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz for the permanent build-out of the plaza space.

The DUMBO Improvement District will work with NYC DOT, DDC and DEP on the design of the project, which is expected to include Main Street, sections of Plymouth, Pearl, Adams, Anchorage Place, the Pearl Street Triangle and additional sections of Water Street east of the Manhattan Bridge. Public input sessions for the plaza design will be held as part of that process. A schedule for the project has not yet been established.

Quinn, Markowitz and Levin were also on hand at the meeting and all agreed that the project would be a giant step forward for the residents and businesses of DUMBO:

  • “DUMBO is one of the most exciting and dynamic neighborhoods in all of New York City, and home to a growing number of businesses, jobs, and residents,” Deputy Mayor Steel said. “With this additional investment, DUMBO will be poised for even more growth in the years to come.”
  • “We’re dedicated to creating world class streets in New York City and this project to reconstruct DUMBO’s Belgian block streets shows we’re not waffling on that commitment,” said DOT Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan. “These restored streets and a community-driven permanent design of the Pearl Street Triangle will create vibrant public spaces that reflect both the historic character of DUMBO and the contemporary needs of this growing neighborhood.”
  • “We’re thrilled that the restoration of our historic Belgian blocks will continue. DUMBO has become an amazing creative community, a thriving digital district and one of the hottest destinations for visitors across the world. DUMBO is the gateway to Brooklyn – and the entrance to Brooklyn Bridge Park. We’re ready for our streets to look the part. Just one look at Water Street today and we can see the future!” said Alexandria Sica, Executive Director of the DUMBO Improvement District. “With this investment, the Pearl Street Triangle and the Archway will create a truly unique gathering space and cultural venue. We look forward to taking our beloved Pearl Street Triangle from green paint to incredible urban oasis.”
  • “The Council’s initial capital investment in DUMBO has spurred further commitments by both city government and private investment,” said Speaker Christine C. Quinn. “It’s no wonder that New York City is on track to become the new high tech capital of the world. The investments of today will yield the jobs of tomorrow.”
  • “I am proud to have joined Speaker Quinn and Council Member Levin in supporting this dramatic re-imagining of DUMBO, transforming its streets, plazas and infrastructure and making them worthy of DUMBO’s reputation as one of New York City’s hottest, hippest and most popular destinations. Kudos to the DUMBO BID, Executive Director Alexandria Sica, the board and its President, Tom Montvel-Cohen, and the dynamic duo of Jed and Jane Walentas for working so hard to give DUMBO plenty to celebrate—from Brooklyn Bridge Park and Jane’s Carousel to free Wi-Fi and the neighborhood’s growing digital and creative communities—and once this project is complete, rest assured that all Belgian Block roads will lead to DUMBO!” said Borough President Marty Markowitz.
  • “The reconstruction of DUMBO’s historic Belgian block streets is essential to preserving the integrity of this important landmark district. I would like to thank the DUMBO BID for their advocacy, and Speaker Quinn, Deputy Mayor Steel, Commissioner Sadik-Khan, and Commissioner Walsh for their continued commitment to this historically significant neighborhood,” said Council Member Steve Levin.

Also at the DUMBO Improvement District Annual Meeting

The DUMBO Improvement District awarded its fifth annual Magic Feather Awards to Deputy Mayor Steel, Speaker Christine Quinn, members of the 84th Precinct and AT&T, sponsor of the 2011 DUMBO Arts Festival, for outstanding contributions to the neighborhood. The DUMBO Improvement District also appointed top tech leaders, Chad Dickerson, CEO of Etsy, and Shirley Au, President of HUGE, to its Board of Directors.