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When the BPCA made the decision in 2008 to assume the responsibility of Pier-A and the renovation that had stalled under city control, there was every reason to believe that the BPCA would be just the latest government entity to throw money down the drain. The BPCA was controlled at the time by President James Cavanaugh and Chairman James Gill.
Cavanaugh told BatteryPark.TV, “We felt that we were better able to make the repairs. The city had gotten bogged down and nothing was happening. We needed to fix it or else it would have fallen into the water, literally. That was the point we were at back in 2008.
We hired The LiRo Group and H3 Hardy Collaboration Architecture. We designed the exterior, replaced the piles, supporting timbers, and copper roof. Inside, we designed the decorative ceilings and walls. In 2011, after I was gone, the BPCA then turned Pier-A over to the Poulakakos restaurant group. They installed the final kitchen and bars.”.
Now, seven years and two hurricanes later, Pier-A has opened to rave reviews. An engineering journal, ENR, has awarded Pier-A the “ENR New York Best of 2014 Award”, according to Real Estate Weekly (No one from the Poulakakos team was awarded.).
Of course, now taking credit for all of the success at Pier-A is the newly hired President of the BPCA, Shari Hyman. Despite having nothing to do with Pier-A whatsoever, Ms. Hyman was quoted in the article, “The restoration of Pier A stands as a testament to the collaboration between BPCA’s remarkable staff working with an outstanding group of professionals from H3 Hardy Collaboration, Stalco Construction, and The LiRo Group. Our collective commitment to the history and architecture of this landmarked building, while bringing it up to modern standards for reuse, are apparent from the moment you see the building.”
Nowhere does Ms. Hyman give credit to the Gill, Urstadt, and Cavanaugh BPCA administration that made Pier-A happen.
And what about that history of Pier-A of which Ms. Hyman is so proud? What about the $4-Million in state funds that was supposed to build a public visitor center to educate the public on the history of Pier-A, but that has instead been allowed under Ms. Hyman’s leadership to be perverted into a coffee shop with three iPads? There is no mention of that by Ms. Hyman.