• St. John’s to have Urban River Restorations: Gowanus Canal…Discussion.

    St. John’s School of Law School of Law CLE Program to have panel and discussion on Urban River Restoration: Gowanus Canal & Newtown Creak.
    Urban Rivers Restoration: The Gowanus Canal and Newtown Creek
    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has just completed negotiations for the cleanup of the Hudson River, the largest environmental dredging project ever. EPA is also collaborating with over 70 potentially responsible parties to investigate and clean up the Passaic River. Now the same process is beginning for the Gowanus Canal and Newtown Creek, two City waterways that present unique challenges.
    The panel will share lessons from the Hudson and Passaic River restoration projects that may guide the Gowanus Canal and Newtown Creek reclamation process, including:
    The need for coordination among all interested parties
    Impacts on area development
    Technical challenges in identifying pollution, parties, and remediation methods
    Negotiation and litigation strategies
    Miriam E. Villani, Esq.
    Sahn Ward Coschignano & Baker, PLLC
    Walter Mugdan
    Director, Division of Environmental Planning and Protection
    U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 2
    Paul Gallay
    Executive Director and Hudson Riverkeeper
    Riverkeeper, Inc.
    Jeffrey B. Gracer, Esq.
    Sive Paget & Riesel, PC
    March 31, 2011
    5:30 – 7:30 p.m.
    School of Law | Mattone Family Atrium | 4th Floor
    This program qualifies for two (2) non-transitional CLE credits. The CLE fee is $50. Please complete the CLE Payment Form and return it as directed.
    Claire McKeever
    Assistant Dean for CLE and Alumni Relations
    (718) 990-6006
    More on St. Johns Unversity at new.stjohns.edu
  • Gowanus Lowline Competition Extended

    You still have a chance to make some dough for your design of the Gowanus Lowline(original report here). The competition dates have been extended.
    Registration deadline was originally 4/1/2011, but now is 5/1/2011
    Submission Deadline was 4/17/2011 and now is 5/27/2011
    Make a difference in America’s, soon to be, most famous Canal, the Gowanus.
    Gowanus Lowline is sort of like the HighLine, but on the ground and better. The design competition aims to redo the look of the waterway in order to reconnect it with the surrounding urban environment.

    “Gowanus Crossings is an international ideas competition, which invites speculation on the value of urban development of postindustrial lands, and the possibility of dynamic, pedestrian-oriented architecture that either passively or actively engages with the canal and the surrounding watershed. This competition focuses on the design of connections in and around the canal, and the residual moments around these connections. These may relate to the east west crossings and/or the north south corridor that defines the Canal and upland.

    First Prize gets: $1000.00
    Second Prize gets: $500.00
    More details and other cool stuff at GowanusLowline.org
    Discovered via: UrbanPlacesAndSpaces.org
  • Gowanus Canal, Search for some Revolutionary War Items & Other Places to Look

    It is extremely exciting to hear that parts of several old ships might be sitting at the bottom of the Gowanus Canal. The Post this morning put out it’s own article talking about the treasure trove of history that people think might be in the Gowanus Canal. It’s not hard to imagine; One look at the murky Canal’s water and you can easily believe that ‘something’ is below the oily service. While finding a ship that may pre-date the 19th century is pretty darn cool lot’s of local residents and historian buffs alike want to find the mother of all history, something from the birth of this nation, something from the American Revolution.
    In 1776 the American Revolution really began in Brooklyn, with the Battle of Brooklyn (Battle of Long Island). During the battle around 400 Marylanders went up against 2,000(est) british troops who had taken the Old Stone House (in Park Slope) as an artillery position. Gallantly the Marylanders fought the British to try and keep them from using the artillery on the escaping columnist, the new Revolutionary American Army, and George Washington himself. 256 of the Marylanders gave their lives in the battle. Some of the battle spilled into the Gowanus Creak, which was located just down the hill from the Old Stone House original(close to current) location and was part of what is now the Gowanus Canal. Most maps dipicting the battle show American’s moving across the Gowanus Creak area to either escape from or engage the British forces.
    Of course many of the artifacts from this epic battle are probably sitting untouched at the bottle of the Canal past the old cars, the bodies with concrete feet, and the old barges and ships. Things like coins, clothing, and musket balls from the late 1700s make historians salivate. While it is great to look for these items in the Gowanus Canal, there might be several other locations that could unearth American Revolutionary War treasures.
    Whole Foods has been doing construction at 3rd Ave and 3rd Street for a while now. It is a bit odd that nothing cool such as Revolutionary artifacts have been found. Even though Whole Foods has flattened out the ground along the banks of the Gowanus Canal, historic items still could be found as building construction begins.
    Caddy-Corner from the Whole Foods location is a plot of land owned by ConEd, who recently tor down part of a historic wall from an old stadium where the Brooklyn Dodgers played. ConEd destruction of the wall has led to digging along the 3rd Ave side of this particular property. The Old Stone House is just 1000 feet away and it is reasonable to think that because this land was once used as just a park and then just a large stadium that relics from the battle could be just below its’ surface.
    Just across the street from Washington Park a piece of property at 4th Ave and 3rd Street that may soon be under construction (Brownstoner). Before construction begins it might be a good idea for scientist to swift through the dirt in this pit. Being so close to the Old Stone house and Washington Park makes it an ideal place for items from the the Revolutionary War.
    New York City, of course, has tons of history underground, but unlike Manhattan, Brooklyn (and other boroughs) landscape has not been touched as much. In Brooklyn places like the Old Stone House (Washington Park), Green-Wood Cemetery, and Prospect Park have been preserved over time. Probably not perfectly, but none the less taken care of enough so that historic artifacts might be easily found. As the fascination with what comes up form the Gowanus Canal grows it is a hope that other places might be viewed as ‘historically significant’ and studied accordingly. So go forth Brooklyn residence, scientist, and historians and see if constructions sites will let you sift through their dirt. You might find something Revolutionary.


  • Jackie Weisberg – “Gowanus Impression”

    Jackie Weisberg is a Brooklyn portrait photographer who has been working on a series called “Gowanus Impressions”. Her work makes the Gowanus area of Brooklyn come alive with color and texture. She has taken this series over a period of time and has inadvertently(or maybe planned) create a time capsule for places that have recently changed with the neighborhoods revitalization. Take a look at the Brooklyn Garage photo that shows the building before Brooklyn Boulder moved in. Also, look closely at a photo that has a graffitied half wall and a large red building in it. This seems to be taken near, if not in the exact place, that the Whole Foods will be going into. Check her site or check out her blog here, to see her great work.

    Check out her work here: Jackiewiesberg.com


Gowanus, Brooklyn

The crack between two hipster neighborhoods, home to the now superfunded Canal, the flash point for the new 'Buy Local' and textile revolutions, & filled with brilliant bohemians. . . this is Gowanus & it’ll awesome your face off.

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