This is the official statement from DOT:
The Brooklyn Bridge is in urgent need of rehabilitation, and this project is slated to begin in 2010 and expected to finish in 2014. During this time, a portion of the Brooklyn Banks will be closed for use by the contractor. When the storage area is established, more than half of the area currently used as a skatepark will be available for public use.
The scope of work for this project also includes painting, which is expected to begin in the winter of 2010. During painting work, the park will be closed to provide the space required for painting operations. After the painting work in this area is complete, anticipated for mid 2010, the park will be reopened with the exception of the storage area. The park will completely reopen when the rehabilitation is completed. DOT has been working closely with Steve Rodriguez, spokesperson for the Brooklyn Banks and the communities that use it, to share this space without compromising the vital reconstruction of the Brooklyn Bridge.
The person to contact for future complaints/issues/info is:
Sabrina Lau AICP
Planner II I Community Outreach for the Brooklyn Bridge
Jan 15th until 4-6 months later- both overpasses that go over the banks area will be covered and painted (pretty much entire banks area from Pearl to Rose streets will be closed and off limits).
Once overpasses are painted(approx summer 2010)- the north ramp (ramp furthest away from the bridge itself) will be uncovered and the area that is not used for staging will be open
In the photo below, this area will be closed for the 4 years after the summer of 2010. Everything to the left of the red line will be behind a temporary wall. The line goes all the way to Rose street- that is the closed road between the big banks and the small banks. This will pretty much make the actual "banks" unrideable because as we all know it is very difficult to ride them from such an extreme angle.
This photo shows that the upper banks area will be pretty much rideable up until the end of the steel flatbar.
Info courtesy of Steve Rodriguez