The aircraft carrier Intrepid, the military museum that has been docked on the Hudson River for 24 years, is scheduled to close on Oct. 1 and will be moved soon afterward to New Jersey for repairs and Staten Island for renovation. The New York Times reported that about a month after the museum closed, the carrier would be towed away from its mooring at Pier 86 and is not expected to return for 18 months. The museum's directors approved the general plan last week after Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and the City Council agreed to provide a total of $17 million over the next two years for the overhaul of the carrier and the pier. Gov. George E. Pataki pledged an additional $5 million in state economic development funds. In addition, $35.5 million in federal funds would raise the public financing for the project to $57.5 million, which should cover all the costs. The Intrepid Foundation said that without the money from the city and state, the Intrepid's future as a military museum was uncertain.
The 900-foot-long carrier, which has not moved since it arrived in 1982, will go first to a dry dock in Bayonne, N.J., for up to 60 days of patching, scraping and repainting of the hull. From there, it will be towed to a pier on Staten Island, where, at the invitation of the mayor, it will stay rent-free until Pier 86 has been rebuilt. The carrier will not be open to the public while it is away.
According to The New York Times, moving the 40,000-ton Intrepid will require six to eight tugboats with
at least 5,000 horsepower each. Getting the carrier out into the river will take about six hours and moving it gently to Bayonne four more. (Source: The New York Times)