Believe it or not, the channel between Governors Island and western Brooklyn was once walkable, and used as a place where farmers would graze their cattle. At a distance of only 1,200 feet, or about four city blocks, the now-dredged stretch puts Governors Island tantalizingly close. Enter public artist Nancy Nowacek, whose apartment views from Brooklyn Heights to Governors Island inspired her to create a manmade connection between the two pieces of land, a stretch known as Buttermilk Channel. "The question became 'Could it be possible to reconnect Brooklyn to Governors Island by hand, with the most minimal means necessary, without large, industrial infrastructure?," Nowacek told Brooklyn Based. Two years later, she has her answer. And it is, "Yes."
Nowacek has created, through trial and error, something she calls the Citizen Bridge, a collection of plywood planks that are fastened to buoyant shipping drums. The pieces will stretch across the channel creating a makeshift buoyant bridge between Red Hook and the island. Railings provide stability for the single day's worth of crossings Nowacek plans to indulge walkers inin cooperation with the Coast Guard, of course. The project is still in its testing and funding phases, with no definite date just yet, but reminder: this is public art. Anyone is welcome to join the single day of festivities. The views are definitely some no one's seen on foot for a long, long time. Brooklyn Based has more on the pretty inventive project.
· Crossing Buttermilk Channel On Foot on a Bridge Built By Hand [BB]
· Citizen Bridge [official]