3. Nearly All Transatlantic Trips Stopped in 1958
Beginning in the early 1950s, commercial flights from America to Europe became more frequent. The rise in flights ultimately ended Chelsea Piers’ career as an important transatlantic port for ocean liners, with nearly all trips stopping in 1958. Instead of closing, Chelsea remained open, but was transformed into a cargo terminal.
It remained a cargo port until 1967, when the Grace and United States lines, two of the port’s biggest tenants, relocated to New Jersey, effectively ending Chelsea’s run as a cargo port, too. From then until the 1990s, the pier fell into decay, going basically unused, and was even scheduled for demolition. But later efforts would revitalize the area.