Posts Tagged ‘Statue of Liberty’

Ellis Island Immigration Museum to Reopen, One year after Superstorm Sandy; Repair Work Continues

October 24, 2013
Ellis Island Immigration Museum pays homage to the millions of immigrants from all over the world who have made the United States of  America © 2013 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

Ellis Island Immigration Museum pays homage to the millions of immigrants from all over the world who have made the United States of America © 2013 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

Ellis Island Immigration Museum, part of Statue of Liberty National Monument, will reopen  to the public on Monday, October 28 for the first time since Hurricane Sandy submerged the island a year ago.

“We are delighted to be able to share Ellis Island’s uniquely American story with the world once more,” said Superintendent David Luchsinger. “I can think of no better way to celebrate Lady Liberty’s 127th birthday than to welcome visitors back to the place where those ‘huddled masses yearning to breathe free’ first came to our shores.”

Visitors will once again walk the halls of the immigration station where 12 million people began life in America. Open areas on the first and second floors include the Great Hall, where immigrants were inspected, and Journeys: The Peopling of America 1550-1890. This first-floor exhibit, developed with the support of The Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island Foundation, tells the story of American immigration prior to Ellis Island’s years of operation. Visitors can pick up a free audio tour, join a ranger program and watch an introductory film. Outside, visitors can stroll to the popular American Immigrant Wall of Honor and take in fabulous views of Manhattan.

Ellis Island Immigration Museum will remain a work in progress at least through the spring. Repairs to the water and sewage systems have already taken place. An entirely new electrical system will be installed along with a new air conditioning system for climate control of the park’s million documents and artifacts. Elevator access to the Great Hall on the second floor is not yet available, but should be restored by early next year. Because of the storm, most of the museum collection is currently stored in a climate-controlled facility in Maryland. A temporary ventilation system will be replaced by permanent equipment later this year.

When Hurricane Sandy hit New York Harbor on October 29, 2012, Ellis Island was completely covered by water. The storm surge destroyed electrical, communications, heating and cooling systems. After the Statue reopened on July 4, the park shifted its efforts from repairs at Liberty Island to planning the more complex task of reopening an historic structure that preserves a delicate museum collection.

Ellis Island was the former federal immigration processing station which processed over 12 million immigrants between 1892 and 1954. A 1965 presidential proclamation added the island to the National Park Service as part of Statue of Liberty National Monument. After years of neglect, major restoration work on the Main Building took place in the 1980s, opening as the Ellis Island Immigration Museum in 1990. The National Park Service works with its partner organizations, The Statue of Liberty – Ellis Island Foundation and Save Ellis Island, to improve and enhance operations at the park.

To visit Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty, purchase tickets at www.statuecruises.com. Statue Cruises is the business that owns and runs the ferries that take visitors to the park. The website contains information about ferry ticket prices. (877-LADY-TIX or (201) 604-2800,  www.statuecruises.com).

For more info on visiting the Statue, see http://www.nps.gov/stli/planyourvisit/index.htm.

See also:

Ellis Island Immigration Museum: Where Everyman is Hero

Statue of Liberty invites visitors to her Crown: Only 240 tickets available each day

For more travel features, visit:

www.examiner.com/eclectic-travel-in-national/karen-rubin

www.examiner.com/international-travel-in-national/karen-rubin

travelwritersmagazine.com/TravelFeaturesSyndicate

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Statue of Liberty Reopens; NYS Funds Daily Cost During Federal Shutdown

October 13, 2013
The Statue of Liberty has reopened to the public under an agreement where New York State is paying the daily cost while the federal government shutdown continues © 2013 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

The Statue of Liberty has reopened to the public under an agreement where New York State is paying the daily cost while the federal government shutdown continues © 2013 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

The Statue of Liberty reopened today, Sunday, Oct. 13, under an agreement reached by New York State with the federal government on Friday, October 11. Under the agreement, New York State will fully fund National Park Service personnel at the daily cost of $61,600 to keep Liberty Island National Park open to visitors as the federal government shutdown continues.

“While the federal government shutdown remains at a standstill, we in New York will not let this international symbol of freedom and democracy remain closed,” Governor Andrew Cuomo stated during a reopening ceremony. “The Statue of Liberty attracts thousands of visits every day, generating economic activity and supporting jobs that we cannot afford to lose. So today, we are back in business and Lady Liberty is ready to welcome New Yorkers and visitors.”

As a result of the federal government shutdown, the U.S. Department of the Interior closed all national parks across the country last week and furloughed more than 20,000 National Park Service employees. In response to the economic impacts that park closures have on local communities, the Department is considering agreements with Governors who indicate an interest and ability to fully fund National Park Service personnel to reopen national parks in their states. These payments will not be reimbursed unless Congress passes a law to provide refunds to individual states.

Under Governor Cuomo’s agreement with Department of the Interior Secretary Sally Jewell, the State will pay for the first four days of reopening the park, with funding coming from the State’s tourism budget. To keep the park open, the State must give the Department two days’ notice for every additional two days. The park will be fully open and functioning as usual. The State will pay the federal government $61,600 for each day that the park is open.

Liberty Island National Park has a major impact on the New York State economy. According to a 2012 annual report by the National Park Service, 3.7 million people visited Liberty Island in 2011, generating $174 million in economic activity and supporting 2,218 jobs. Every visitor spends an average of about $35 for the ferry, food and souvenirs at Liberty Island and Ellis Island. Additional expenditures outside the park are estimated to be as high as $100 with each visit. The park generates more than $15 million in revenue from concessioner and franchise fees for the federal government, as well as $3.2 million in license fees to New York City parks plus sales taxes.

As a result of the shutdown – which has denied access to more than 10,000 visitors to the park daily – more than 400 direct jobs have been lost at the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, including with the National Park Service and Evelyn Hill, Inc. Statue Cruises which provides ferry rides to the island has seen its daily ridership drop 50-70 percent, and the company now has 180 jobs at risk. In addition, the federal government itself is losing $50,000 per day in concessioner fees.

This shutdown also follows an 8-month closure of Liberty Island due to Superstorm Sandy. Ellis Island remains closed to the public.

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Rare replica model of Statue of Liberty goes on view at 667 Madison Avenue

October 13, 2011

Leonard Stern, French Ambassador to US Francoise Delattre and NYC Comm. Marjorie Tiven unveil the 667 Madison Avenue Statue of Liberty, a rare exact replica of the original scale model of the New York Harbor Statue of Liberty.

The only replica of the original Statue of Liberty sculpture in America has been acquired by Leonard Stern and was unveiled by French Ambassador Francois Delattre and Commissioner Marjorie B. Tiven of the NYC Mayor’s Office on Wednesday, October 12th, 2011, in a public plaza at 667 Madison Avenue, where it will be permanently displayed.

For more than 100 years the original Statue of Liberty plaster sculpture by Frederic-Auguste Bartholdi resided in a small French museum and could not be reproduced for fear that it would be damaged in the process. New digital imaging technology recently made it possible to cast the original plaster model in bronze by the same foundry and using the same lost wax method as the 151-foot Statue in New York Harbor.

The Statue of Liberty is celebrating its 125th anniversary, but will be closed for repairs for one year beginning this November. The 667 Madison Statue will be lighted 24 hours and provides a spectacular opportunity to see the ornate details of the original from a close-in perspective impossible to achieve from Liberty Island.

The unveiling holds personal significance to the Stern family, as Leonard recalls his father Max telling him of his thought when he first entered New York Harbor, looking at Lady Liberty from the bow of the Hamburg American Line ship on which he emigrated: “Now I am going to be free to achieve as much as I am able.”

667 Madison Avenue, widely regarded as the top boutique office building in Manhattan, already is home to several important works of art, including a 17th Century Gobelin tapestry and three suits of armor from the 16th century. The Statue will include a plaque that reads:

 STATUE OF LIBERTY

Frederic – Auguste Bartholdi 1834-1904

This statue, cast in bronze from the from the original plaster sculpture, was enlarged 16 times by the artist to create The Statue of Liberty in New York Harbor, perhaps the most recognized symbol of freedom in the world.

It was presented as a gift to the American people and paid for by the citizens of France. The statue celebrates the core values of both countries: freedom, democratic government and the equality of man.

It also celebrates the bonds of friendship between our two countries and the vital financial and military assistance that France gave our Revolutionary Army commanded by George Washington during our young nation’s hour of greatest need.

See also:

Liberty Island to Remain Open during Statue of Liberty’s Year-Long Renovation and slideshow

For more travel features, visit

www.travelwritersmagazine.com/TravelFeaturesSyndicate

www.examiner.com/eclectic-travel-in-national/karen-rubin

 

National Park Service invites public comments on safety improvements to Statue of Liberty

August 18, 2010
Statue of Liberty's Symbols of Freedom

Statue of Liberty holds high the symbols of freedom © 2010 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com.

The National Park Service (NPS) is inviting comments on proposed life safety upgrades at the Statue of Liberty National Monument, as part of the Environmental Assessment and Assessment of Effect (EA/AoE) process. Comments can be submitted electronically or by mail, through Sept. 13.

Improvements are currently proposed because other sections of the monument are currently not compliant with life safety and accessibility codes. Upgrades to infrastructure,
circulation, and emergency egress within the monument would allow compliance with applicable codes to the maximum extent possible without compromising the historic fabric of the monument.

Climbing Statue of Liberty's staircase

A Park Ranger leads a group up the internal staircase to Statue of Liberty's Crown © 2010 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com.

This EA/AoE evaluates two alternatives, the preferred alternative and the no action alternative, and also describes alternatives that have been considered but dismissed. The proposed actions involve both the renovation of existing elements and the construction of new features to improve firesafety, accessibility, and circulation within the structure. The proposed actions include the removal of and replacement of existing stairs andelevators as well as upgrades to the fire safety, ventilation, and lighting systems.

The proposed actions would be undertaken in accordance with the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for the Treatment of Historic Properties and would limit impacts to historic structures.  A draft Programmatic Agreement has been prepared and is included in the Appendix of the document, that once signed, will enhance consultation with the State Historic PreservationOffice and Advisory Council on Historic Preservation and better outline the
process and schedule for the project’s consultation and any required mitigation.

Those who wish to view and comment on the EA/AoE, may do so between Aug. 13 and Sept. 13 either electronically at http://parkplanning.nps.gov/STLI or by mail to the Park Superintendent at Statue of Liberty National Monument, National Park Service, Liberty Island, New York, NY 10004.

Be aware before including your address, phone number, e-mail address, or other personal identifying information in a comment, that the entire comment – including personal
identifying information – may be made publicly available at any time. Whileyou can ask in their comments to withhold personal identifying information from public review, the NPS cannot guarantee that it will be able to do so.

Located on a 12-acre island in New York Harbor, the Statue, Liberty Enlightening the World, was a gift of friendship from the people of France to the people of the United States and is a universal symbol of freedom and democracy. The Statue of Liberty was dedicated on October 28, 1886,designated as a National Monument in 1924 and restored for her centennialon July 4, 1986.

For more information about visiting the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island Immigration Museum, see our stories:

Statue of Liberty invites visitors to her Crown: Only 240 tickets available each day

Ellis Island Immigration Museum: Where Everyman is Hero