City seeks historic boat concession at Brooklyn Bridge Park’s Pier 6

February 18, 2020

A historic vessel could soon permanently dock at Brooklyn Heights’ waterfront park. The Brooklyn Bridge Park Corporation this month issued a request for proposals (RFP) seeking operators for the long-term docking of a ship with historical significance to serve as an educational or cultural center at the park’s Pier 6. Historic boats have previously operated at the pier on a seasonal basis, but the group is looking for a more permanent amenity, as the Wall Street Journal first reported.

Map of Pier 6 and Pier 5 via BBP’s request

The Pier 6 wharf contains space for up to three berths, with the nonprofit looking to fill berth C with the historic vessel. According to BBP, proposals could include the management of additional historic vessels for berths A and B. The vessels must be on either the New York State or the National Register of Historic Places, or be more than 50 years old and associated with a historic event or figure.

The group is seeking operators who will “maintain the Pier 6 berths at the highest standards, offering educational exhibits, cultural programming, and/or food and beverage amenities, making a significant improvement to the quality and ambiance of the Park,” according to the RFP.

“There’s a whole universe of folks who are operating historical vessels who are constantly looking for a place to dock them,” David Lowin, the executive vice president of BBP, told WSJ. “A major part of the agreement for us, though, is that they’re not just commercial enterprises, but also there to enhance people’s awareness of the maritime industry and its importance to New York City.”

Educational programs could include guided tours, lectures, classes, workshops related to marine culture, public displays, or other New York maritime-related history.

boat bars, pilot, brooklyn bars
Photo by Douglas Lyle Thompson for Pilot

The park has hosted historic vessels at its piers over the last 10 years, including most recently Pilot, a historic schooner constructed in 1924. Pilot, which has operated at Berth A since the summer of 2017, offers public programming and a restaurant between the months of May and October. According to BBP, the vendor made nearly $2 million during the 2019 season.

The initial term will be for five years, with one two-year renewal option granted at the discretion of BBP. An information session will be held on Feb. 25, with proposals due on March 16 at 3 p.m. Get more details here.

[Via WSJ]


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