December 10, 2015

BGI’S YEAR IN REVIEW: 2016

Thank you for helping us make 2016 an incredible year for the Brooklyn Waterfront Greenway. Thanks to your ongoing support, this year saw countless milestones for the Greenway.

Below are some of our favorite images and stories from this year. Please help us keep up the momentum by making a 2016 tax deductible year end gift to Brooklyn Greenway Initiative. Our effectiveness as an organization hinges on your continued financial support.

DONATE TODAY!

Happy holidays and best wishes for the new year.

May: Volunteer Planting Days

BGI hosted several volunteer days on the Greenway this year. Hundreds of volunteer hours contributed to the Greenway’s maintenance, weeding, planting and tree care. The Berkeley Carroll School mulched tree pits along the Columbia St segment of the Greenway, Airbnb cleaned up the Flushing Ave and Williamsburg St West segments of the Greenway prior to the opening of the Naval Cemetery Landscape, Goldman Sachs (back for a third year) planted native flowers in giant pot plants along Imlay St in Red Hook and HR&A Advisors weeded and cleaned up our adopt-a-highway slopes along the Greenway in south Williamsburg. We couldn’t accomplish all we do to make the Greenway a pleasant and beautiful experience for riders without volunteer support from these amazing institutions and businesses!

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Brooklyn Waterfront Tastes

In June, 200 guests joined us at our annual summer benefit –Brooklyn Waterfront Tastes, held at Industry City. Guests enjoyed a huge array of food and drink from dozens of Brooklyn -based restaurants for a Sunday brunch tasting event.

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July: 1500 Cyclists Rode The Epic Ride

1500 cyclists joined us at the 8th annual Epic Ride in July, a 25 or 40 mile ride along Brooklyn’s waterfront from Greenpoint to Riis Park Beach. The ride was a hot one this year but everyone got to finish at the beach party and go for a dip in the ocean!

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July: Launched the Country’s First Adopt-A-Greenway Program

BGI’s Adopt-a-Greenway Program assures that the Brooklyn Waterfront Greenway is maintained at a high standard and can continue to delight the tens of thousands of people who use it daily. Under this program BGI will provide maintenance services that city agencies will not provide, including litter removal, the development of new landscaped areas and maintenance. For more information on BGI’s Adopt-a-Greenway program, click here.

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September: Brooklyn Bike Rave

In September, BGI launched the Brooklyn Bike Rave, a glowtastic night ride along the Greenway from Greenpoint to Brooklyn Bridge Park which finished with a party under the Archway under the Manhattan Bridge in Dumbo. Over 500 riders aged 4 to 70 years came to the inaugural event, decked out in lights, glowsticks and sound systems which played a synchronized playlist during the ride. The mobile dance party on wheels was the first ever event of its kind in the country and drew inspiration from other successful bike raves happening around the world. We look forward to making this an annual BGI fundraising event.

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October: Brooklyn Greenway Half & 5K

In October, BGI hosted the Brooklyn Greenway Half and 5K. The fourth annual event sold out with a record 1700 participants. Runners went on a 13.1 mile journey along the waterfront on a Red Hook – Greenpoint loop, via Brooklyn Bridge Park and the Brooklyn Navy Yard.

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Greenway Construction Updates

BGI Construction Highlights for 2016-17 include:

  • WEST ST. in Greenpoint has broken ground, part of a set of $18 million in capital projects there.
  • The FLUSHING AVENUE segment of the Greenway along the Brooklyn Navy Yard is fully funded and pre-construction utility work has been completed.
  • The segment connecting Red Hook with Sunset Park at 29th Street is designed and fully funded and moving toward construction.
  • Five additional miles of the Greenway are in various stages of design and funding.

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November: Greenway + Industry

Our annual fall benefit Greenway + Industry held at The William Vale in Williamsburg brought together major business centers along the Brooklyn waterfront for an evening of live music, food, drinks and networking. slide

Green Spaces: Columbia Waterfront Park

COLUMBIA WATERFRONT PARK is a planned green space that will provide a new amenity to the Columbia Street Waterfront District. The park will be developed on a roughly two-acre property that extends from Kane Street to Degraw Street on the west side of Columbia Street. The first phase of the park commenced in Spring 2014 when BGI volunteers completed a native grass planting. In 2015 BGI volunteers completed further plantings and built a fence, and NYC DOT installed bike racks and benches.

In August 2015, Columbia Waterfront Park received $500,000 in funding from Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, out of nearly $12 million allocated to parks across Brooklyn.

In December 2015, the NYS Department of State awarded $1.2 million in funding for Columbia Waterfront Park. BGI envisages this park’s landscape to serve as the northern end of the flood barrier system.

In 2017, BGI anticipates securing the remainder of funding to complete funding for Columbia Waterfront Park.

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Stormwater Infrastructure: Greenpoint

The West Street project in Greenpoint includes a high level sewer which is complemented by green infrastructure BGI is constructing in blocks to the east that will prevent 14 million gallons of stormwater from entering the combined sewer system annually. This will reduce the number and frequency of raw sewage releases into the East River during heavy rainstorms and is the first demonstration of BGI’s stormwater management goals for the Greenway.

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Resiliency: Greenway as a Flood Protection Barrier in Red Hook

Working with NYC DOT and the Mayor’s office of Recovery and Resiliency, BGI is evaluating options for the construction of the Greenway in Red Hook to contribute to coastal flood protection.

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