Revised June 17, 2020
Joseph Tazewell, Regional Director
New York City Regional Economic Development Council
633 Third Avenue, 36th Floor
New York, NY 10017
Dear Mr. Tazewell:
We write in support of the project plan submitted by the Brooklyn Navy Yard Development Corporation (“BNYDC”) in connection with a grant of up to $986,792 from the Empire State Development Corporation for its Transportation Capital Project. As described more fully in BNYDC’s General Project Plan, dated May 21, 2020, BNYDC seeks these funds in connection with their efforts to provide accessible transportation--through a shuttle service--from a section of Brooklyn that is currently underserved by public transit to the Navy Yard.
For over two centuries, the Navy Yard has served as an important community asset in Brooklyn. After initially serving as a premier naval shipbuilding facility, the Navy Yard now serves as a valuable institution that provides economic and educational opportunities to the surrounding low- and middle-income neighborhoods. To occupy the Navy Yard, BNYDC recruits the innovative industrial companies and entrepreneurs in multiple sectors, including technology, food, fashion, and design, thereby providing employment opportunities to the surrounding neighborhood. BNYDC also provides a range of community and educational services, including public art programming, job trainings, and youth summer internships. Most recently, BNYDC helped our State respond to COVID-19 pandemic by mobilizing its tenants to produce PPE and other equipment for essential workers at the front lines of this public health crisis.
Through this project proposed to be funded here, BNYDC is expanding transportation options for the approximately 20,000 employees at the Navy Yard that are anticipated over the next several years. To date, BNYDC has acquired five state-of-the-art transit-style buses to provide transportation services between local subway stations and the Navy Yard, installed 10 bus shelters at the shuttle fleet’s fixed bus stops, relocated facilities to create a multi-modal hub, and realigned curbs to allow for a publicly accessible car share lot. BNYDC has also constructed the upland portion of the NYC Ferry landing on the site and installed interactive technology to disseminate real time information, which are heavily utilized by both customers and employees. Ultimately, the project will provide unprecedented access to the Navy Yard campus and enhance its role as a center for manufacturing and other commercial activities, innovation, education, and employment opportunities.
For all of the forgoing reasons, we ask that you give full favorable consideration to this proposed grant. If you would like to discuss this matter, please contact any of us directly or via Greer Mayhew in Senator Kavanagh’s office at 718-875-1517.
Brian Kavanagh, State Senator
Joseph Lentol, State Assemblymember
Eric Adams Brooklyn, Borough President