Friday, September 30, 2011

Community Disappointment with the DEP

Hello from CORD!

Wednesday, September 28, was the first annual CAG meeting helped at PS 58 in Carroll Gardens. This meeting was free and open to the public. As most people know by now, CAG stands for the Community Advisory Committee.

The CAG meeting for September was held at PS 58 on Tuesday September 27th with a presentation by the Commissioner Carter Strickland and his associates from the NYC Department of Environmental Protection. The main focus of the discussion was two fold:

  • Water Quality and Its Components
  • Green Infrastructure

According to the DEP presentation:

Water quality deals with the conveyance system of moving stagnant Cana water through tubular tunnel pipes and oxygenating it. The DEP is currently upgrading the flushing tunnel and pumps that will increase the flow and capacity of water. When completed in 2013, the new pumping stations will reduce the CSO's, the combined sewer overflows by 34 per cent and improve the water quality. Three new pumps are being installed to replace the existing one to cover any anticipated breakdowns in the system. The new tunnel is made to work during both high and low water levels in the canal. This action will increase oxygen levels and reduce floatables (solid sewage waste) by 78%. The DEP agency will be responsible for cleaning and inspection of storm sewers and their upkeep.

Also according to the DEP presentation:

The Green Infrastructure Plan involves the installation of storm water controls, anything that involves catching the rainwater before it reaches the canal, such as catch basins, water absorbing plants, rooftop gardens, and oxygenating trees. Grants will be available in the near future for nearby residents to apply.

The Community Response:

The Community at large is appreciative of the well deserved and long awaited clean up by the joined efforts of EPA Superfund and the DEP.

Nonetheless we feel it is a travesty to this community which has endured the troublesome, Gowanus Canal for years, to find that improper and outdated water level estimates were used to determine the needs for maintaining acceptable water clean up. With the future in mind, it stands to reason that the higher rain levels and the increase in housing development should be factored into the water plan. This community will not allow $400,000,000 to be spent wantonly, without regard for the future.

Let us do it right!!!

warmly, CORD

For more information on this extremely important issue please see:

PMFA blog Community to DEP's Commissioner Strickland: Water Quality Improvement Plan Doesn't Go Far Enough


With the "Protect Our Homes" petition, CORD was formed in May, 2007. This petition arose as an overwhelmingly negative response to the coming of the over-sized 360 Smith Street Development at the corner of Smith Street and Second Place (Aka Oliver House; aka 131 Second Place). This petition, which had well over three thousand signatures, led to a new zoning text amendment in summer of 2008.

To: Our Elected Officials, Community Leaders, The MTA:
(MAY, 2007)

We the undersigned Carroll Gardens homeowners and residents, are appalled by the "as of right" ruling which allows owners and developers to erect buildings in our neighborhood with no regard to the impact they will present to our quality of life and the value of our homes........