Lowest of the Low
Gazing out at the East River all day, its easy to forget that the river is not really a river at all: its a "tidal strait" - essentially a big crack in the rocky shoreline of the Atlantic. Ocean tides push in and out twice a day; at the south end of the system, exaggerated and accelerated by the Harbor's narrowing passage; at the northern extreme, confused by the confluence with the Harlem River and the Long Island Sound.
While the East River has always been a valuable link in the chain of navigable waters that makes up the New York Harbor waterways, its status as a tidal strait have always made it a strange beast. Since New York's earliest days, sailors have sought to master the river's currents and tides, employing favorable currents to their advantage (and understanding how to circumvent unfavorable tides when necessary).
This week marks a period containing the lowest low tides until this December, and Sunday we took advantage of nature's deep exhale to scramble around the East River shoreline and photograph the ruins of the former Brooklyn Eastern District Terminal piers - much of which spends high tide under water - and all of which is likely to be removed forever by developers creating the new piers and promenades of Northside Piers and the Edge residential projects.
lowest tide photoset [Flickr]
B.E.D.T. Background and History [insijs]
Labels: williamsburg waterfront