After a long and storied life, Pier A, located at the southwest tip of Manhattan between Battery Park City and historic Battery Park, was set to be renovated for new use as an entertainment space. LiRo provided construction management services for the renovation of the site.
About the Project
Pier A was built in 1886 to house the New York City Department of Docks and Harbor Police because its location offered an ideal vantage point from which to oversee traffic in New York Harbor, and it is the oldest surviving operational pier in the city. The building was expanded in 1900, and again in 1919 with an added World War I memorial. After serving for decades as a central operations center regulating harbor activity, the pier began a new phase in 1960 when the FDNY Marine 1 fireboat John D. McKean, along with its associated staff, was relocated to there from Pier 1. For the next three decades, Pier A became the most iconic fireboat station in the nation. The pier was designated a New York City landmark and placed on the National Register of Historic Places in the late 1970s. Marine 1 was relocated in 1992, leaving Pier A open for redevelopment. However, the pier stood vacant for almost 20 years, until funding and development options were finalized. The Battery Park City Authority, in coordination with the New York City Economic Development Corporation, developed Pier A with the intent of leasing the facility to restaurant and special event tenants.
Project Challenges & Solutions
Pier A consists of a three-story head house structure facing Battery Park and a two-story pier-shed structure facing the water. Due to the extended period of vacancy, the entire structure both above and below water was in severely deteriorated condition when renovations began. LiRo became involved with the project at the start of Phase II work, which included stabilization and restoration of the pier deck and structural reinforcement of the pier-shed. Phase III core and shell restoration focused attention on the complete restoration of the building, including restoration of historic elements such as wood trim, doors, hardware, exterior pediments, pilaster moldings, and siding was performed. A major unforeseen challenge during construction was presented by Superstorm Sandy, which caused extensive flooding of the main level.
Because of flooding caused by Superstorm Sandy, completed walls and wiring had to be replaced, and some material selections were changed to include more water-impervious alternates. This meant the newly updated building would be in better shape should another flooding episode occurred. Additionally, all work was performed with the intent of preserving the character of the building while enabling the attraction and accommodation of modern tenants. The result is a beautiful historical building with the modern amenities needed for business today. This project is LEED Silver certified.