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Key Destination in the South Bronx Greenway Includes Fishing Pier and Kayak Launch
New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) and Congressman José E. Serrano today announced the opening of Hunts Point Landing, a new 1.5 acre public open space which includes a new fishing pier, a kayak launch, and a restored shoreline with new tidal pools that naturally mitigate storm water runoff. Created from a former street end, Hunts Point Landing also features a boulder seating area—created from remnants of the deconstructed Willis Avenue Bridge— and the location offers expansive views of the Bronx River and East River. NYCEDC is currently seeking proposals for a food vendor to operate at Hunts Point Landing. Located at the southern end of the Hunts Point peninsula, Hunts Point Landing is the latest addition to a network of waterfront open spaces already created on the peninsula, including Barretto Point Park and Hunts Point Riverside Park.
“Hunts Point Landing is a perfect example of the Bloomberg Administration’s vision for reactivating waterfront properties - both in the South Bronx and across the City,” said New York City Economic Development Corporation President Seth W. Pinsky. “Thanks to our many dedicated partners in the local community, we have been able to transform what was once a dead-end street into publicly-accessible open space with exciting amenities for local residents and workers to enjoy.”
"Today our community has another gem in its growing emerald necklace of green spaces along the waterfront," said Congressman Serrano. "These spaces offer our neighborhood a place to breath and to enjoy peace and solitude. They are treasures and each addition makes the whole network of parks and open spaces more valuable. I applaud all the partners who worked on this project. Like others in the community, I look forward to spending time in this beautiful spot."
“Hunts Point Landing is an exciting new addition to the continued redevelopment of the South Bronx, particularly waterfront access open spaces for the community to enjoy,” said Assembly Member Marcos A. Crespo. “I commend The City of New York, its public and private partners and the community activists whose vision, dedication and advocacy have made this possible.”
"I'd like to thank the Economic Development Corporation for creating this important new open space," said Commissioner Aponte. "Hunts Point Landing will be a welcome addition to the parks that already dot this area, yet another example of the City's commitment to re-connecting Bronxites with their waterfront and offering opportunities for outdoor recreation – whether by foot, bike or boat."
“I am proud to say that Hunts Point Landing is the downstream neighbor from the Wildlife Conservation Society’s Bronx Zoo. WCS, which operates field projects in 57 countries around the world, administered the NOAA grant that provided funding to restore shoreline habitat and create educational opportunities for this remarkable new park. WCS thanks Congressman Serrano, NYCEDC President Seth Pinsky, and so many others who made this beautiful park a reality,” said John Calvelli, Executive Vice President of Public Affairs, Wildlife Conservation Society.
“We’re very pleased to invest in restoring the Bronx River as part of this larger effort,” said Perry Gayaldo, Deputy Director of NOAA’s Restoration Center.
Hunts Point Landing is one of five Phase I projects selected from the South Bronx Greenway Master Plan, which represent a $48 million total investment. Funding for the projects came from sources including City capital, Congressman Serrano, the Environmental Protection Fund, the Wildlife Conservation Society, and the WCS-NOAA South Bronx Waterfront Partnership.
In addition to Hunts Point Landing, both the Hunts Point Avenue/Spofford Avenue and Lafayette Avenue streetscape projects have been completed this year to create a greenway network that connects Hunts Point residents to the waterfront open spaces and helps deter trucks from traveling through the residential core. On Hunts Point Avenue and Spofford Avenue, the streetscape improvements include a new landscaped median, a new bicycle lane, and additional landscaping and trees. The Lafayette Avenue streetscape connects the residential core of Hunts Point to Hunts Point Riverside Park through the construction of a new landscaped median, a bicycle lane, and new street trees, while also supporting new water and sewer infrastructure.
On Food Center Drive, the first Class 1 shared bicycle/pedestrian lane, which is physically separated from vehicles, in the Bronx will be built as part of the greenway network to provide waterfront access. The 1.25 mile long roadway will also be converted from a two-way street to a one-way street, easing congestion and allowing for the construction of the new shared bicycle/pedestrian lane. NYCEDC is currently completing the design for Food Center Drive, and construction is expected to start by the end of this year.
The Randall’s Island Connector, which will provide a safe and convenient at-grade pedestrian and bicycle pathway for South Bronx residents to easily access over 400 acres of recreation on Randall’s Island, is expected to break ground in 2013. The Randall’s Island Connector will create a quarter mile pathway from 132nd St in the Bronx to Randall’s Island. The pathway will run underneath the historic arches of the elevated Amtrak trestle and will include new lighting, landscaping, an at-grade rail crossing, and a pedestrian bridge over the Bronx Kill. The Randall’s Island Connector will connect directly to the Hell Gate Pathway on Randall’s Island.
The South Bronx Greenway Master Plan, released in 2006, was the result of extensive collaboration between NYCEDC, other City agencies, and the local community, in particular the project partners, Sustainable South Bronx and the Point CDC. The South Bronx Greenway Master Plan identified opportunities to link existing and new parks through a network of waterfront and on-street routes, which will encompass 1.5 miles of waterfront greenway, 8.5 miles of inland green streets, and nearly 12 acres of new waterfront open space throughout Hunts Point and Port Morris.
Adjacent to Hunts Point Landing is 600 Food Center Drive, where NYCEDC recently issued an RFP for the development and operation of a rooftop farm. At approximately 200,000 square feet, the rooftop has the potential to accommodate what could be one of the largest rooftop farms in the world.
NYCEDC is also seeking an event organizer to plan a food festival at the parking lot of the New Fulton Fish Market, which is also adjacent to Hunts Point Landing. The goal is to create a destination event for the local community, the Bronx, and the rest of New York City, while also fostering new connections between the Food Distribution Center and food producers citywide. .
All of these initiatives are part of the Hunts Point Vision Plan, released in 2005, aimed at promoting a competitive business environment and sustainable community on the Hunts Point Peninsula in the South Bronx. The Hunts Point Peninsula is home to approximately 800 businesses and over 13,000 employees, as well as a residential community of approximately 12,000 residents. Approximately half of the Peninsula is occupied by the City’s primary food distribution facility, the 329-acre Food Distribution Center, which serves over 23 million customers in the greater metropolitan region. The Food Distribution Center is one of the largest such centers in the world, comprised of over 115 private wholesalers operating from the Hunts Point Terminal Produce Market, the Cooperative Meat Market, and the New Fulton Fish Market, who generate more than $3 billion in combined sales annually. The Food Distribution Center is also comprised of parcels leased to other major food and beverage distribution companies like Anheuser-Busch, Baldor Specialty Foods, Krasdale Foods, Citarella, Sultana, and Dairyland, a subsidiary of Chef’s Warehouse.
New York City Economic Development Corporation is the City's primary vehicle for promoting economic growth in each of the five boroughs. NYCEDC's mission is to stimulate growth through expansion and redevelopment programs that encourage investment, generate prosperity and strengthen the City's competitive position. NYCEDC serves as an advocate to the business community by building relationships with companies that allow them to take advantage of New York City's many opportunities. Find us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter, or visit our blog to learn more about NYCEDC projects and initiatives.