Governors Island welcomed a record 275,000 visitors in 2009

Governors Island had a record-breaking 2009 season, welcoming more than 275,000 visitors to the Island from May 30 to October 11. Visitors came to enjoy a wide range of arts, recreational and educational opportunities, many of them never before available to the public. The number of visitors in 2009 was a 110% increase over 2008 when 128,000 visited.

There were many new experiences visitors could have on Governors Island in 2009. For the first time, the entire 2.2 mile promenade was available for walking and biking. Picnic Point became the Island’s newest and most popular open space, with hammocks, swings, a three acre sustainable farm, and unparalleled views of the Statue of Liberty. And, there was a free ferry from Brooklyn’s Fulton Ferry Landing to Governors Island on Saturdays and Sundays. Nearly 30,000 visitors took the free, seven minute ferry ride between Brooklyn and the Island on weekends this season.

Dozens of programming partners created exhibitions, installations, and programs for Governors Island visitors. More than 30 historic buildings were re-animated with cultural exhibitions and programs, and over the course of the season, programming partners presented dozens of concerts and performances.

There were also a wide variety of recreational activities and programs for the public to enjoy as well. Biking remains one of Governors Island’s most popular activities.  One in four visitors to Governors Island bikes while visiting. On Bike and Roll’s™ Free Bike Fridays, visitors could borrow a bike for free for up to one hour. On these days, more than one in three visitors enjoyed more than five miles of car-free bike paths.

Partners also created recreational and educational programming ranging from sporting events and visitor activities, to lectures and hands-on educational opportunities.   

Governors Island volunteers were also critical to the season’s success. Volunteers were stationed at the Battery Maritime Building, at Pier 101 and Soissons Dock on Governors Island to answer inquiries and direct visitors. Volunteers came from across the five boroughs to volunteer this year.

Thank you to all of the tremendous partner organizations that created programs for visitors to enjoy this year and to all the volunteers who assisted on the Island.

Even though the Island is closed to the public, we are already busy preparing for next year. Be sure to check back here often to get updates on Governors Island news.

In 2009, visitors enjoyed hammocks, green space, and outstanding views at Picnic Point

In 2009, visitors enjoyed hammocks, green space, and outstanding views at Picnic Point for the first time.

2 Responses

  1. […] 275,000 people visited Governor’s Island last summer alone, even in advance of park development.  This is going to be a hugely popular destination. […]

  2. […] here. Our institutional passion for pop-up parks, car free spaces, off-the-shelf lawn chairs, and throngs of people predisposes us to love everything about the new pedestrian spaces NYC DOT created along Broadway […]

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