NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Driving down the West Aspect Freeway in your morning commute, you might discover one thing sudden: a warship docked at West Harlem Piers.
What’s the ship used for, and why is it there? On The Dig, Elle McLogan determined to seek out out.
Climbing aboard, she met Port Captain Scott Koen, who recounted the dramatic historical past of the Baylander IX-514.
“It’s a helicopter touchdown coach that was used up till 2011 to coach helicopter pilots for the varied providers and tips on how to land on a shifting ship,” he stated. “It began its service life in 1968. It was a touchdown craft that was used in the course of the Vietnam Struggle.” The Baylander has had 122,000 landings on board since its development.
Regardless of its wartime historical past, the ship at the moment is a spot of peace. “When you come on out right here, it’s like the town stops,” Koen stated. “It’s very calming and really soothing up right here.”
It has additionally grow to be a spot of studying. Cherise James, eighth grade math instructor at M.S. 324, introduced her college students aboard to participate within the Billion Oyster Venture.
“The Billion Oyster Venture is a undertaking that tries to revive the oysters which are discovered within the totally different estuaries surrounding New York Metropolis,” she stated. “Principally, the oysters filter the water. And so, with my college students, we’re speaking about how we will restore the oyster inhabitants in New York Metropolis.”
The scholars mixed biology and chemistry, analyzing the elements of the Hudson River’s water and ecosystem. Different faculty teams go to all through the week.
For these trying to expertise historical past and science in a single spot, the Baylander is free and open to the general public Saturdays and Sundays from midday till four p.m.
The Baylander IX-514
West Harlem Piers
(between W. 129th and one hundred and thirtieth Streets)
New York, NY 10027