The Battery Park City Authority (BPCA) has hired an engineering firm to begin designing resiliency measures for the community’s northern border, and extending into Tribeca. At the Authority’s March 26 board meeting, Gwen Dawson, the BPCA’s vice president for real property, explained, “this project will address the area that runs essentially from the North Promenade, just west of Stuyvesant High School, eastward across Route 9A and eastward from there to about West Broadway.”
This is one of four separate (but related) resiliency plans the BPCA is in various stages of implementing. The others cover the community’s southern border(around Wagner Park and Pier A), its western waterfront (the length of the Esplanade, from Wagner Park, to Rockefeller Park), and the ballfields (along with the adjacent Asphalt Green community center).
Ms. Dawson continued that the BPCA issued a request for proposals last December, and received eight responses, which it winnowed down to four viable bids. This group was then narrowed to a pair of proposals, which seemed to adhere most closely to the BPCA’s goals.
“Those two proposers scored very close to each other in terms of their technical proficiency, according to the criteria that we had set,” Ms. Dawson observed. “When we then evaluated the cost proposals we found that [engineering firm] AECOM’s cost proposal was significantly lower. There was about a $2.7 million or 38 percent difference between the two.”
AECOM is already leading the design effort for BPCA’s southern resiliency project. As with the northern section it will now help to design, that phase also pushes beyond the boundaries of Battery Park City, extending eastward across Battery Place to Bowling Green. Both of these expansions are deemed necessary to connect Battery Park City’s planned resiliency measures with high ground outside the community, to prevent floor waters from future extreme-weather events from skirting around more localized barriers.
BPCA board member Catherine McVay Hughesasked, “since there seems to be successful engagement with AECOM on the southern portion of Wagner Park, we’re going to get the same level of community engagement on this key component as well?” This was a reference to a series of public meetings at which AECOM staff have explained their design approach to the Wagner Park resiliency project to residents, and fielded questions.
Ms. Dawson answered that there would be a similar outreach for the northern section of the project.
When this discussion concluded, the BPCA board voted to approve a 33-month contract for AECOM to design resiliency measures for the community’s northern section, for a fee of $7.1 million.