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City to Turn Former Staten Island Coast Guard Station Into Cultural Space

By Nicholas Rizzi | June 18, 2012 2:50pm

STATEN ISLAND — The city will try to bring a new cultural facility to a former Coast Guard station near the State Island Ferry Terminal in St. George.

The city's Economic Development Corporation issued a request for proposals for groups to build sites such as a museum or community facility in the building, know as "Building 11," at 5 Bay St.

The proposal would turn the dormant space into a educational, artistic, historic or recreational spot to attract visitor's from the Island and other boroughs, the EDC said.

“The activation of Building 11 with new cultural programs would be a major step in the ongoing revitalization of the St. George waterfront,” said EDC president Seth Pinsky.

The site also features a neighboring public plaza and esplanade, which the chosen recipient will be able to have use of for their specific program, the EDC said.

The city wants the new space to attract the nearly 2 million visitors that ride the ferry to stay on Staten Island, instead of just making the return trip to Manhattan as soon as they dock.

"This offers a great opportunity to introduce the 2 million tourists that ride the ferry annually to the many cultural attractions which exist here on Staten Island," said Staten Island Borough President James Molinaro.

Building 11 was part of a cluster of buildings the hosted the Coast Guard's lighthouse operations from 1863 to 1966.

The city bought the 2,350 square foot Building 11 in 1982, and renovated it in 2002.

The EDC will offer an initial lease on the space for one and a half years to the group who's proposal is chosen, with renewal options for up to four years, and the EDC will provide interim programming on the site during the RFP process.

A information session will be held on July 10 by the EDC at the site, and the final proposals are due on July 23.