Did you really think it was gonna be that easy? Christos Tsiamis, the Project Manager for the EPA says that both developers and the city are doing their part to totally screw up the Gowanus Canal cleanup. First, let's start with what the developers did wrong. It looks like the two big culprits here are the Lowe's on Second Avenue and the abandoned Toll Brothers site at Second Street. The Lowe's? Well, that was built right on top of a gas plant and they didn't dig nearly deep enough when they were cleaning the site up. Now, there's that black Gowanus goo running into the canal. So much for home improvement! The Toll Brothers site has a charming slop of it's own oozing into the canal, a "black gunk and yellow liquid containing cancer-causing PAHs (poly-aromatic hydrocarbons) and other chemicals" seeping all over the place. In both cases, the developers are pleading ignorance claiming they had no idea how deep this death-slop was buried, with Toll Brothers VP David Von Spreckleson saying that blaming them is "preposterous." So everyone is reacting about as expected.
National Grid- formerly Brooklyn Union Gas- and the city plan to dig about eight feet deep in the land around the canal to remove the coal tar and other contaminants. They also plan on installing an underground wall which would stop the flow of the tar into the canal and into people's homes. There's just one big flaw. Apparently, the tar can eat through the walls. Christos Tsiamis, the EPA project manager says coal tar has to removed from as far as 30 feet deep underground to be effective. Still sure you want to stick around, Gowanus Green?
· Feds Slam "Glowanus" Dig [NYP]
· Failed projects scar Brooklyn's Gowanus Canal even after 'cleanup' [NYDN]
· Gowanus Canal Coverage [Curbed]