On Thursday, January 26, activists, neighbors, and representatives from community groups gathered via Zoom to consider the future of Banker’s Anchor, the triangular-shaped chunk of land that is crisscrossed by Nassau Avenue, N. 15th, and Banker Streets.
North Brooklyn Mutual Aid, the group behind other Open Streets initiatives in North Brooklyn, hopes to turn this area into a public plaza, having already applied to the NYC Department of Transportation’s NYC Plaza Program.
The Plaza Program “prioritizes sites that are in neighborhoods that lack open space, and partners with community groups that commit to operate, maintain, and manage these spaces so they are vibrant pedestrian plazas,” according to the DOT website.
The space already houses The Lot Radio and Greenpoint Community Fridge, though supporters of Banker’s Anchor say that the space could go even further in offering community programming, due to its isolated nature and position as a crossroads between Greenpoint and Williamsburg.
In terms of how reclaiming the street for pedestrians might impact traffic flow, North Brooklyn Mutual Aid says the street’s current layout does not serve much practical purpose for vehicle use.
“As vehicles travel towards Greenpoint on Nassau, there are two opportunities for them to turn left, on Banker and on North 15th,” according to an Instagram story from the group, “Because of this North 15th Street is redundant.”
Other potential features that were proposed include planters with built-in seating, public furniture, and programmable structures.