2005-05-20 / Front Page

Timeline, Price Tag For Flight 587 Memorial

By Brian Magoolaghan

The city has set forth its expectations for the memorial to Flight 587, including a timeline and a maximum price tag for the project that promises to bring change to the southern end of Beach 116 Street.

The details are contained in a formal Request For Proposals (RFP) released May 6 by the Department of Parks and Recreation.

Artists or creative teams have less than a week to complete a detailed proposal including a cover letter, design description, résumé, references and previous work examples on 35mm slides.

Submissions are due by 4 p.m. Thursday, May 26.

Despite a tight deadline, a handful of Rockaway Artists Alliance members will submit proposals for the Beach 116 Street memorial to Flight 587, the group’s president told The Wave this week.

“I e-mailed [the RFP] to our artists last week… It’s kind of short notice, but I know there are at least two or three of them who are going to apply for it,” said Geoff Rawling.

The RFP sets the following expectations for the memorial: 1) memorialize and appropriately serve as a place for remembrance and reflection; 2) address the physical and cultural parameters of the crash; 3) use materials that will endure the harsh oceanfront environment; 4) be easily maintained; 5) convey artistic excellence.

Although the comfort stations, mosaic wall and traffic turn-around in the area are not specifically mentioned in the RFP, sources said the memorial could bring a reconfiguration/restoration of each of theses elements.

The maximum available funding is $500,000, and the city is in the process of raising both public and private funds to cover the costs of the memorial, according to Erica Gonzalez, a spokesperson for the Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs.

City Councilman Joseph Addabbo Jr. said this week that American Airlines should “kick in” to cover the cost and that he would frown upon taxpayer money being spent when the Tribute Park memorial to September 11 is coming together as the result of intense fundraising.

Representatives from at least six city agencies and members of the Flight 587 Memorial Advisory Panel, described in the RFP as “representatives from affected families and members of the community” will choose three proposals in time for a June 6 announcement, according to a schedule included in the RFP.

A site visit is slated for June 14, after which there will be a six-day window to submit questions. Each of the three artists or design teams will receive a $2,500 honorarium to fund a thorough proposal due by 4 p.m. Tuesday, July 5.

The selection panel will announce its decision on July 15 and approval on the final design is expected by September 1. Groundbreaking at the site will coincide with the fourth anniversary of the crash and completion is slated to happen in time for November 12, 2006.

The RFP may be downloaded from the Cultural Affairs website at www.NYC.Gov/dcla. The agency contact person, Jennifer McGregor, can be reached at (212) 643-6196 or at memorial@culture.nyc.gov.

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