Too Late? Senators Join Campaign To Save Navy Yard’s Timber Shed
The L Magazine 3/02/2011
By Benjamin Sutton
The corner of the Brooklyn Navy Yard including beautiful Admiral’s Row—which is quickly crumbling down to dirt—is currently under the Army’s jurisdiction, but will soon pass to the city, which is redeveloping the area with a visitor’s center, supermarket and more. Preservationists’ efforts to save the beautiful officer’s homes along Flushing Avenue has been reduced one building, the historic Timber Shed at the corner of Flushing and Navy, which is miraculously still standing (er, leaning) after all the winter’s snowfall. Now Senators Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand are joining the effort to move the Army to action—or at least to let the city in to renovate.
Not two blocks away the city is already well on its way to finishing renovations and additions to the only other Admiral’s Row building that’s being saved, Building 92. But the Timber Shed remains off limits to city contractors and renovators due to ongoing inaction by the Army. So, the Daily News reports, Senators Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand have written to John McHugh, the Secretary of the Army, asking that the city be let in to do emergency preservation work.
Schumer tells the News:
Admiral’s Row is a national landmark, but for too long it has wasted away, forgotten in the dustbin of history. It appeared we had an agreement to preserve these historic buildings – but bureaucratic hurdles are now getting in the way. I hope the Army will … allow the Brooklyn Navy Yard Development Corp. to save these buildings before it’s too late.
National Guard spokesperson responded non-committally that the Army hasn’t decided whether to let the city in, and that it may be unsafe for their workers to go anywhere near the Timber Shed. Meanwhile, history falls to pieces behind red tape.