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New York City NYC
Governor’s Island: A Great Escape and Development Opportunity for NYC

Spring is here and Governor’s Island is officially open to the public for another fantastic season of nature, arts & culture, history and good old fashioned relaxation. For those unaware of this historic (car-free) oasis, the 172-acre ice cream cone-shaped island sitting out in New York Harbor is the closest escape from the city you can get with just a 5-minute ferry ride away from Lower Manhattan and Brooklyn’s Pier 6. Open 7 days a week from May 1 – October 31, Governor’s Island is a destination rich in arts & cultural programming, conservation and natural history.


Originally a fishing and hunting ground for the Lenape Tribe and early New York settlers, Governor’s Island has a long history as a military base. From the first Colonial militia to the U.S. Coast Guard, the Island has been central to military life up until the 1990’s, when the government turned the Island over to the city and became a public park.

Throughout the years, New Yorkers have enjoyed programming and services from more than 60,000 organizations, including the Urban Assembly New York Harbor School, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council’s Arts Center, The Compost Learning Center, and art installations throughout the island such as Cabin. The first commercial tenant arrived in 2017 and the next phase of the project includes a new and exciting opportunity to further expand on the island’s vision.

The Trust for Governor’s Island is accepting proposals from non-profit, educational and commercial companies for projects for real estate development that would offer something special and unique to the community. In a press release from the Office of the Mayor, Bill Rudin, Chairman of the Association for a Better New York said, “The Mayor’s proposal to bring technology, cultural, educational, retail and conference spaces to Governors Island will further establish New York City as the place for innovation and creativity. ”

The Governor’s Island Redevelopment Initiative seeks any and all ideas for creative re-use of the landmarked structures and newly-cleared spaces in the park. The idea is to eventually develop Governor’s Island as a year-round mecca of innovation, education, conservation and recreation.

Welcoming programs and services ranging from the tech industry to niche incubator projects such as Collective Retreat’s first camping experience this summer on Governor’s Island, There are endless possibilities to develop and share this wonderful and versatile space with New York City.

For more information, visit govisland.com/real-estate