2. Redevelopment of Chelsea Piers Began in 1992
In 1976, there were some movements to convert Chelsea Piers into a waterfront recreation center, but those plans were never fully realized until much later, as there wasn’t much enthusiasm among citizens. A demolition plan was scheduled in the ’80s, though that never happened either. Left to decay for years, the piers became crumbling structures of rust and wood, degraded to nothing but warehouses, a city Tow Pound (Pier 60), sanitation truck repair shop (Pier 59), and a U.S. Customs impound station (Pier 62).
In May 1992, after a six month research process, the New York State Department of Transportation obtained the rights to renovate the area and construct the Chelsea Piers Sports and Entertainment Complex. Beginning in 1995, the area opened in stages with a golf club, the sky rink, and field house. After a $100 million renovation, the once neglected Chelsea Piers was transformed once again into a busy port.
The old Pier 57, still standing today, has yet to be renovated for any future plans though it has been the site of a pop-ups market. But this building is significant because of its engineering by designer Emil Praeger, which put it on both the State and National Registers of Historic Places.