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A new face for Brooklyn waterfront

Plan taking shape for Sheepshead Bay renaissance that would include a public marina

Plan taking shape for Sheepshead Bay renaissance that would include a public marina

New York City officials are floating plans to build a public marina, and making other improvements on Sheepshead Bay in Brooklyn.

State Sen. Carl Kruger, D-Brooklyn, says the plans, though tentative, are long overdue.

“The time is right to complete the renaissance that has always been the dream of all who care deeply about the past, present and — most important — the future of this glorious waterfront community,” Kruger says.

Kruger says he met with the city’s Department of Parks and Recreation to discuss the possibility of opening up the area to public recreation. The waterfront property, recently acquired by the parks department, is currently home port to several commercial boats. Margaret Johnson, a parks department spokeswoman, says the department is still evaluating the property and should come up with a plan later this year.

Sheepshead Bay once was considered Brooklyn’s gold coast, but the wealthy moved on and the smaller bungalows moved in. Still, the waterfront is home to many restaurants and is considered an ideal city destination.

Earlier this year the Cartigan, a derelict Coast Guard cutter submerged in the bay for more than 30 years, was removed.

Basic repairs were done last fall on the electrical, lighting and railing systems at the 10 fixed piers along Emmons Avenue. A public service kiosk has been installed and a dockmaster has been assigned to assist in operations at the site, according to Johnson.

Kruger says a recreational marina will “re-energize a location which has long been regarded as the weak [link] among New York City’s valuable piers.”

Tentative plans also call for floating docks at pier 10, improved steps and fencing, and a dock especially for kayak and canoe users. Kruger says the parks department is currently negotiating with the state Department of Environmental Protection to install new sewers.

The total renovation project is estimated to cost around $450,000, according to Kruger. The city has applied for a $225,000 grant from the state’s division of Coastal Resources Local Waterfront Revitalization program. The park’s department would foot the other half of the cost, according to Kruger.