City to Control Governors Island

Monday, Apr 12, 2010  |  Updated 8:45 AM EDT
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City to Control Governors Island

A rendering of the Shell at Liberty Terrace, which will provide seating space near the water.

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The City will take control of Governors Island -- and the master plan for new development on the island calls for a 2.2-mile promenade to be created along the waterfront and 87 acres to developed as open green space.

Gov. David Paterson and Mayor Michael Bloomberg on Sunday released the new plan for the former military base just off the tip of Lower Manhattan.

New York City will have the primary responsibility for developing the island, which will be decked out with bike paths, cultural facilities and a promenade with views of Manhattan, just a half mile away.

"The popularity of Governors Island as a recreational destination in our city has skyrocketed,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “Today’s agreement establishes new and clear lines of authority over Governors Island that will allow us to further improve the island and launch a process for turning the island master plan into a reality."

Governors Island served as an Army base and then a Coast Guard base for nearly two centuries.  Most of the island was transferred to New York State in 2003. The National Park Service manages the rest, the 22-acre Governors Island National Monument.

"For the past seven years, New York State has championed the preservation and development of one of the State's historical treasures, Governors Island," Gov. Paterson said in a statement.   "Transferring the operation and governance of the island to a City-controlled entity at this time signifies that the State has secured the capital investment needed, and ensured the vision for the future of Governors Island."

Governors Island is accessible by ferry and is now open to the public during the summer and early fall.
    

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