The Brooklyn Greenway Initiative has almost $19 million in federal, city, and privately raised funds to design and develop a landscaped, pedestrian- and biker-friendly promenade along the currently gritty, grubby, and privately owned Brooklyn waterfronts from Greenpoint to Sunset Park. And at a “fun-raiser” in a Columbia Heights tapas bar last night, the organizers announced that they’re ready to come up with their first formal development proposals; they hope to have selected a designer by June for the segment alongside the Navy Yard, the first part to be designed.
At the event, Brian McCormick, the onetime accountant who spearheads the project, displayed a pretty new map — which his press people, oddly, are refusing to provide to New York — of the route the path will take, winding through Vinegar Hill’s brownstones, past the Navy Yard’s spooky mansions, and along Red Hook’s piers. The group is negotiating with six public agencies and 24 private owners to tie up all the needed land, and its tools are public workshops — the next one’s in May in Greenpoint — and a commitment that the path will reflect its surroundings. “You’re going to have a strong attachment to the neighborhoods you pass through,” McCormick told us. Which is more than you can say for an office park.