This week, a resident of the Columbia Street Waterfront sent me an email noting a recent uptick in beer delivery trucks on their residential streets.
"What's the scoop with Phoenix in your neighborhood? They are rolling right through our neighborhood on Columbia Street - cited 7 in 20 minutes today!
They were supposed to be using the inside of the pier only.
I was under the impression that they had a uniform fleet with their logo - but no they use various beer trucks with the branding of the actual beer company."
Is that right? It seems as though the trucks don't necessarily have "Phoenix Beverages" on the side. They have the decals, etc., of the various beer companies covering them, and nothing in particular to say that they're Phoenix Beverages trucks. (They certainly don't resemble the clean, glossy brown, newly painted trucks that Phoenix and the EDC proudly displayed in their PowerPoint presentations at their "community outreach" meetings.)
So, this week, late one afternoon, I attempted to confirm these observations and took a look at the new line-up of trucks parked in front of Pier 7, on Columbia Street at the bottom of Atlantic Avenue. (Right next to the soon to be opened Brooklyn Bridge Park's children's playground at Pier 6).
And there they were - parked all in a row after completing their day's deliveries, I assume, with some more trucks coming back through the gates to park for the night. Before me was yet another parking lot with amazing Brooklyn Waterfront views to add to Red Hook's collection (Cruise Terminal, Fairway, Ikea, the ATF Building next to Valentino Pier, etc.).
But on the side of the trucks, there was no indication they were from Phoenix Beverages. What was written on the side was "Long Feng Trucking", with a Laight Street address. Who is Long Feng Trucking?
Googling "Long Feng" at the Laight Street address showed no results, but on further searching I found this - an ad for a job opening at Long Feng at this Long Island City address in Queens - 37-88 Review Avenue.
A quick Google Maps search of this LIC address showed - aha, "Phoenix Beverages".
Here are a couple of screen shots of their old LIC location. I'm not sure if they're still operating from there during their relocation to the Red Hook Piers. You can see the truck with actual Phoenix Beverages markings with the same address as "Long Feng" painted underneath entering the compound.
Mystery solved - it seems as though Long Feng Trucking licenses their trucks to Phoenix Beverages. Whatever the situation, it's pretty clear that "Long Feng Trucking" trucks are "Phoenix Beverages" trucks.
So, look out for those trucks in our neighborhood. As the resident who emailed me noted, these trucks are supposed to be using the internal roadways within the Container Terminal site as much as possible, only entering via Bowne Street (Cruise Ship Terminal entrance) and the bottom of Atlantic Avenue - next to the Pier 6 BBP kiddie's playground. If you see the trucks regularly straying from those routes, it may be an idea to give Phoenix a call on 718-609-7200. Greg Brayman is the owner / VP of Operations who guaranteed at community meetings that these measures would be adhered to. Alternately, you could always email the NYCEDC, who pushed for the deal to bring Phoenix to Brooklyn's waterfront at both Piers 7 and 11, as they have the contract with Phoenix, and it was their contractual requirement - included as a response to objections from the community about the additional 200+ truck trips a day that Phoenix would be bringing - that Phoenix ensured that that their trucks use these internal roadways as much as possible. The EDC's general email is - email@example.com - you should write to the attention of Seth Pinsky (Pesident), Venetia Lannon (VP Maritime), or Andrew Genn (also at the Maritime unit).
There is still no sight of any of those flashy, new, cleaner, CNG (Compressed Natural Gas) burning, brown trucks that Phoenix has also promised, the introduction of which is part of their contractual obligations. As part of their contract with the EDC they have 7 years to convert their entire fleet to this cleaner fuel.
Also, I have seen nothing of Phoenix's operations at Pier 11 at the Atlantic Basin yet. Remember, Phoenix's deal (insisted on by the EDC) meant their taking of both Pier 7 and most of Pier 11 in a 20-year lease - despite only ever asking for either one or the other.
Pier 11 shed and Imlay St. buildings behind.
Pier 11, on right, and Atlantic Basin.
Well, these new trucks and their resultant pollution and congestion will join the other new additions to our neighborhood - the cement trucks at the new and quietly opened cement plant next to IKEA and across the street from Added Value's Organic Farm. (Click here for a slideshow courtesy of Vivian Doskow)
They make lovely bookends to our neighborhood, don't you think?
Anyone want to attend a "Vision 2020 Waterfront Planning" workshop? - see my previous post, below.