LOWER MANHATTAN — After years of delays and millions of dollars of cost overruns, the overhaul of Pier A, the landmarked 126-year-old pier at Lower Manhattan's tip, may finally be taking shape.
By June, workers should finish repairing the historic, but dilapidated pier — which suffered another major setback as a result of Hurricane Sandy damage — Gwen Dawson, senior asset manager for the Battery Park City Authority, told members of Community Board 1’s Battery Park City Committee Tuesday.
The BPCA will then turn the pier over to a group of developers including the Poulakakos family, who will pour $18 million into the space to build an oyster bar, a sit-down, upscale restaurant, a catering hall and a tourist information center. They plan to open the new pier by Memorial Day 2014, they said.
The developers and their new architecture firm, Green Light Architecture, also unveiled new renderings Tuesday for the reimagined three-story building and its surrounding pedestrian plaza.
While the designs remain similar to previous iterations, Danny McDonald, a Poulakakos partner, emphasized that the eateries will support local, regional food and a “farm-to-table and from bay-to-plate” ethos. The interior utilizes reclaimed wood and the lower level will have an “open, organic, industrial feel.”
The second floor will be home to a more formal 100-seat restaurant and the third level will be a catering area that could fit about 150 people. The first floor of the long, narrow space will be open to the public, even those who don’t necessarily want to buy food or drink.
Along with a visitors area that will have information about Lower Manhattan as well as the pier’s history, the area will include a long bar and tables, where anyone can come in and sit. There will also be a more organized oyster bar at the end of the first floor.
The developers said they hope to open by Memorial Day 2014, and they anticipate the revamped pier will employ 250 people.
Pier A opened in 1886 as the headquarters for the New York Harbor Police and Department of Docks, before later serving as an FDNY fireboat station and workshop. It has been vacant and closed to the public for more than a decade.