Ellis Island seawall repair

Since most of Ellis Island is landfill, the seawall around the edge of the island has sagged over the years. A major repair of the entire seawall is set to begin Summer 2010 and will continue for approximately 19 months. This project is being funded through ARRA (The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act).

As this work progresses, some public areas of Ellis Island, including portions of the Immigrant Wall of Honor, will be within the work zones, and therefore not accessible to the public.



Flagpole area on Ellis Island closed for construction
Flagpole area on Ellis Island


The flagpole area at Ellis Island has been closed off to facilitate work on the seawall.

(The blue-and-white diving flag means "I have a diver down (in the water); keep well clear at slow speed". It has the same general meaning as the red-and-white flag you see.)

Ellis Island Dock closed with "Diver Down" flag
Ellis Island seawall closed, with diving flag


The entire front seawall on Island #1 has been closed for repair work.

The red flag with the diagonal white stripe is commonly used to indicate "Diver Down", in other words, a diver is in the water.




Work is getting underway to make extensive repairs to Ellis Island's seawall. Some of it will have an effect on your visit. Not only will portions of the Immigrant Wall of Honor be closed off, but the area around the flagpole will be restricted to construction personnel only. This work is scheduled to be completed by June 2011.

You will also see seawall repairs being done on the other side of the ferry slip. While this work will not directly affect your visit, be aware that it may influence the ferry boats entering and leaving the slip.

Last updated: February 26, 2015

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Ellis Island National Museum of Immigration
Statue of Liberty National Monument

New York, NY 10004


(212) 363-3200

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