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Contact: Jerry Willis, (646) 356-2105
National Park Service Announces Finding of No Significant Impact and Final Memorandum of Agreement for New Security Screening Facility on Liberty Island
Liberty Island, NY - Superintendent John Piltzecker announced today the next step toward completing the Statue of Liberty New Security Screening Project: a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) for the Preferred Alternative. The FONSI has been signed by the National Park Service (NPS) Regional Director, and a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) has been filed with the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation. Both documents are now available online at the project website: https://parkplanning.nps.gov/Liberty_Island_Secondary_Screening
The NPS selected the preferred alternative for implementation as described in the FONSI. The FONSI explains why this alternative will have no significant effects on the human environment. It is based on the environmental assessment and the comments received from the public, other government agencies, and NPS staff during the public review period, which concluded March 20, 2017. The comments are addressed in the FONSI. No changes were made to the selected alternative as a result of these comments.
The MOA among the NPS, New Jersey and New York State Historic Preservation Offices, Delaware Tribe of Indians, and the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission outlines a process for mitigating and minimizing adverse effects to the Statue of Liberty and its setting. It commits the NPS to consulting with the signatories listed above throughout the design process to minimize the effect of the new structure on the Liberty Island setting. The MOA process will ensure that the NPS fulfills its obligations under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act.
Additionally, a Heritage Impact Analysis for this project was prepared and submitted to the UNESCO World Heritage Centre. It examines the impacts that implementation of the project would have on the Outstanding Universal Value of the Statue of Liberty. This report is also available online.
To implement the preferred alternative, the NPS will construct a new 3,800-square-foot security screening facility on Liberty Island adjacent to the eastern wing walk, along the side of the monument. The new facility will include approximately 400 lockers, as well as stroller parking, in a paved outdoor area across the wing walk from the main screening facility. These new facilities will replace the functions of the existing security screening tent on Liberty Island. That tent will be removed after the new structure is completed.
The purpose of the project is to move the location where visitors entering the monument undergo security screening from a tent in the center of the main mall to a permanent structure that is off to the side of the primary approach to the Statue of Liberty. This will increase the efficiency of visitor screening, reduce pedestrian congestion, and will remove a tent that currently obstructs one of the fundamental views of the historic district.