Friday, March 25, 2011

Staten Island's Waterfront is Getting a Makeover

Excerpt from Staten Island's Waterfront is Getting a Makeover
By Stephanie Slepian, Staten Island Advance

Imagine better connections from the St. George Ferry Terminal to North Shore restaurants and cultural attractions. An indoor horseback riding arena in Ocean Breeze Park and a children's park at Midland Beach.

Or think of taking in the views on an esplanade stretching from Clay Pit Ponds Park to Tottenville and viewing the wildlife at the future Freshkills Park. And consider increased maritime jobs, recreation and natural habitats.

It's all part of WAVES -- officially known as the Waterfront Vision and Enhancement Strategy -- a citywide initiative designed to reconnect residents and tourists to New York's 578 acres of shorelines.

The plan is expected to be announced tomorrow by Mayor Michael Blooomberg and City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, who are to be joined by a host of city officials at Brooklyn Bridge Park.

A 180-page blueprint -- which will be availble at -- was produced after a year of meetings with the city's 59 community boards and after vetting by the City Council, public advocate and five borough presidents. It contains plans to improve the shorelines -- called "reaches," a nautical term for a stretch of waterfront.

WAVES would advocate for construction of a new Goethals Bridge with bike, pedestrian and transit access in the Arthur Kill North Reach. The transformation of the former Fresh Kills landfill into a park is also central to the reach.

The Kill van Kull Reach includes plans for the New York Container Terminal and remediating Arlington Marsh. It supports raising the height of the Bayonne Bridge and seeks to create open space for Islanders to view Shooters Island.

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