Group would transform South Bronx waterfront

A pier at the east end of 132nd Street in the South Bronx is little more than a short stretch of splintering boardwalk and a gathering place for discarded bottles. A collapsing barbed wire fence attempts to restrict access to the waterfront.

But an ambitious initiative from the nonprofit New York Restoration Project is reimagining the abandoned pier as a public greenspace. During a Wednesday press conference, NYRP members unveiled plans for its Haven Project, a string of open spaces in the Bronx’s Mott Haven and Port Morris neighborhoods. If successful, the project will create waterfront access and safe transportation corridors in the industrial area. Securing funding and building rights, however, might prove challenging.

The Haven Project’s renderings of the redesigned pier show a waterfront park with benches, murals, and a long wooden wall separating the park from nearby factories. The new park would also provide a link to the Randall’s Island Connector, a new bridge set to open this summer. The 132nd Street renovation would be the first in a series of upgrades, NYRP executive director Deborah Marton told Capital. She estimated the first phase would cost between $5 million and $10 million, although the costs of cleaning the area might increase the figure.

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