Gowanus Canal CAG Meeting
Tuesday, April 24, 2018
Mary Star of the Sea Senior Apartments, 41 1st Street
CAG Facilitator Doug Sarno opened the meeting at 6:42 p.m.
Approval of minutes from the March meeting was postponed.
Christos Tsiamis, Remedial Project Manager for EPA, presented the updates.
The 4th Street Basin Pilot Project
After the concerns about noise and vibration damage resulting from the initial pile-driving activities, EPA directed the team to conduct future pile-driving using a Giken Silent Piler, which produces fewer vibrations and disturbances on land and buildings. Use of this new technology has been going very successfully, so contractors are finishing the piling this week in preparation of support for dredging and capping. Should be re-starting activities next week.
CAG: So you’ve been driving sheet piles?
EPA: Yes, it is very quiet – you can’t even hear it, only the engines.
Beginning in November, there was a recommendation to get this technology and we did. We will be dredging, and then capping, in this pilot. We anticipate those activities will last through the end of the summer. The goal is still to begin dredging of the main canal sometime in late 2020. This is still within reach, even with the bulkhead delay.
Moving north, the design of the First Street basin continues. Further north, the cutoff wall for the Fulton Manufacturing gas plant will be in place from top of the canal to Union Street; the design began when National Grid was working with New York State, so EPA made some fixes and created a 50% design. Once there is agreement on all the elements, we don’t have to divide stages; the 95% design should be completed by May 2018. EPA expects a finalized order to be signed, based on the schedule, by December 2019 or early 2020.
The new bulkhead is being installed in front of existing bulkheads – the top of the new wall sticks above the water. The design was done for two reasons: too much encroachment, and deciding to use the Giken Press at the 4th Street basin.
CAG: How tall is the bulkhead?
EPA: About 50 to60 feet total; this is part of the remediation to prevent tar from coming in.
CAG: Will that wall be vulnerable to something hitting it?
EPA: Yes, it is a thick, steel bulkhead.
There is usually a two-foot offset from existing barrier besides water.
Finishing up with designs for the First Street basin by 2019. The 95% design should be complete in a month. Regarding 4th Street – just readjusted the design, anticipate both the wall and construction will be done by 2018 and completed by 2020.
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