Built by the Coast Guard in the 1960′s, Yankee Pier on Buttermilk Channel needed serious rehab when Washington deeded the Island back to New York control in 2003. Thanks to funding by Borough President Scott Stringer, GIPEC has now completed the job and will reopen it on City of Water Day this Saturday, July 18. Use of the pier is limited to educational and historical boats with programs for Island visitors. Because of security concerns, private boats cannot be accommodated.
In order to open the pier to the public, GIPEC made extensive investments in its railings, resurfacing its deck and installing protective fendering for boats that will tie up there. The pilings needed work, too, as did lighting, electrical wiring and plumbing. A grant from the Hudson River Foundation’s Hudson River Improvement Fund is enabling the Alliance to sponsor a special “spud” barge attached to the pier – for this occasion only – to accommodate small boats.
The goal of all this work is to expand the Island’s programs, which may include tours of the boats that moor there (see cityofwaterday.org), on-board instruction and other educational programs that a variety of craft may offer.
The Y-shaped Yankee, T-shaped Tango and L-shaped Lima line up on the sheltered Brooklyn side of the Island. They were built to handle large Coast Guard boats, which makes them too high and unsuitably configured for smaller boats. There are no current plans to rehab the other two, nor to use Yankee for ferry service.