PortSide is a living lab for better urban waterways.  PortSide NewYork brings WaterStories to life. 


PortSide brings the community ashore and community afloat together, for the benefit of all.

We are creating a maritime center that combines the working waterfront, public access and community development and displays a new model for urban waterways.
PortSide produces WaterStories programs in arts, education, preservation, resiliency, workforce and harbor advocacy on and off our flagship, the historic tanker MARY A. WHALEN. 


We were founded in 2005 to create a forward-looking maritime center combining working waterfront, public access and community development.  Our goal is to serve the full diversity of New Yorkers and provide transformative maritime (WaterStories) programs in education and culture, and a pipeline to marine jobs.  For 10 years, we sought a home while operating as a pop-up and creating NYC’s most innovative waterfront programs on the MARY A. WHALEN and other ships, and in parks, ports, storefronts, shipyards and a containerport.  In 2015, we secured a long-term site for our ship.

At the end of 2017, we were offered an opportunity to to expand into an adjacent warehouse. With building space, we can grow year-round programs and serve more people!  The opportunity to finally have space to deliver long-intended programs causes us to refocus our programs.  We are calling an end to our resiliency programs after working on this for 5 years after hurricane Sandy, and we will no longer have harbor advocacy as a stated program. Our focus in early 2018, is on getting the building space where we can finally do more physical programs. The success of those programs will fulfill the vision and replace the talk of our prior advocacy work. We will walk the walk even more and talk the talk less.

This is the generation that will be known as the generation that rethought the city’s relationship to the waterfront. We have an opportunity to get it right, and we think that a cultural center like PortSide with a home on the working waterfront will be a great place to do that.
— Tim Ventimiglia, Museum Designer advisor to PortSide



Donate Now