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Photo courtesy of the Brooklyn Navy Yard
Photo courtesy of the Brooklyn Navy Yard
An aerial view of the Brooklyn Navy Yard.

With the Brooklyn Navy Yard’s ambitious expansion plan and a new shuttle in the works, the borough’s largest shipyard is getting bigger as well as better thanks to $4.8 million in FEMA funds for Sandy-related repairs.

According to Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, who announced the funding with Senator Charles Schumer, the money – secured through two different grants from FEMA – will be used to cover electrical repairs and dock renovations.

“The current expansion projects at the Navy Yard will help serve as a catalyst for job creation and more economic opportunities,” said Gillibrand. “Superstorm Sandy devastated our communities; these funds are an essential investment towards keeping this important economic center thriving by helping solidify the strength of the Navy Yard’s infrastructure.”

The grants total $3,122,543.70 for the repair of electrical substation G – which will include demolition of the existing structure, badly damaged by Sandy, and replacement with a new, weatherized structure that will sit above the flood plain – and $1,764,921.60 for the dock renovations. The pumps at Dry Dock 1 will see restored functionality and improvements that should minimize damage in the event of another storm.

“While the Yard and its tenants were able to recover quickly from Superstorm Sandy and resume operations at a level close to where they were before the storm, one of the ongoing challenges has been to ensure that our basic infrastructure can withstand the impact of another natural disaster,” said David Ehrenberg, president and CEO of the Brooklyn Navy Yard Development Corporation (BNYDC). “We are grateful for the leadership provided by Senator Schumer and Senator Gillibrand and their efforts to secure these funds that will allow us to rebuild basic systems that serve a critical, but particularly vulnerable, component aspect of the Yard — our ship repair facilities.”

“The Brooklyn Navy Yard is the lynchpin of economic renaissance along the Brooklyn waterfront,” added Schumer, “and that’s why we have to make sure its infrastructure is better protected in the event of a future storm.”

The yard is currently in the process of enhancing transportation to the facility with a direct shuttle, set to launch this spring, that will run every 10 minutes and connect to the F, A, C, B, D, N, Q, R, 2, 3, 4 and 5 trains, and the LIRR.

The shipyard is also in the middle of its largest expansion since World War II — with the one-million-square-foot Building 77 undergoing a $185 million renovation, and bringing with it over 3,000 jobs to the yard – already home to over 300 businesses.

Russ & Daughters, the famous New York City appetizing shop and café, will anchor Building 77, opening its first-ever location outside of Manhattan on the ground floor. The 14,000 square feet of space will be used as a public food hall and manufacturing center.

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