No More B & T: Army Corps Of Engineers Want Manhattan Digs

photo credit: Colleen Murphy

Aren’t engineers supposed to like bridges and tunnels?

The Army Corps of Engineers must be tired of all those Ed Hardy jokes. The Corps is currently determining whether or not to ditch their ‘Bridge and Tunnel’ home at Fort Hamilton for the bright lights of money-makin’ Manhattan.

The Daily News is reporting that the proposed move of more than 100 employees to Manhattan would probably close New York City’s only army base. The move to the city could also be detrimental to local Bay Ridge businesses at a time when many store owners have already felt the pinch of a sluggish economy.

In Washington this past week, Rep. Michael Grimm (R- Staten Island, Brooklyn) seems to have bought the community a temporary reprieve.

From the Daily News:

“Quite frankly, Fort Hamilton is a huge part of our community, and I wouldn’t allow anything to jeopardize that,” said Rep. Michael Grimm (R-S.I.). “When I say they’d have to move over my dead body, that’s not a sound bite, I meant it.”
Grimm added a section to the Energy and Water Development Appropriations Bill last week that stops cash from flowing to any Corps relocation.
The bill passed the House, 219 to 196, on Friday.

Currently, the Corps pays around $300,000 in annual maintenance fees to use Fort Hamilton. But like some trust fund brat with a rich uncle (in this case Uncle Sam), they’d rather pay as much as $750,000 a year- the current projected cost, to live out their secret Carrie Bradshaw fantasies with Bobby D. on Varick Street in Tribeca.

However, Army Corps of Engineers officials say the lack of subways in Southern Brooklyn and the fact that many officials *ahem* “regularly work in Manhattan,” might mean the move would make the local division more efficient.

Local officials and residents continue to be concerned about the future of Fort Hamilton. While they’re staying for now, a move to Manhattan by the Corps could take place as early as next year.

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