Gowanus Canal CAG Meeting
Tuesday, September 26, 2017
Mary Star of the Sea Senior Apartments, 41 1st Street
Doug Sarno opened the meeting at 6:35 p.m.
The August meeting summary was approved with no revisions.
The Gowanus Town Hall with Nydia Velázquez was tentatively re-scheduled for 11/16.
Project Updates (Christos Tsiamis, EPA Remedial Project Manager)
The second phase of the pilot study in the 4th Street Basin will begin in early October, not in August as previously scheduled. The potentially responsible parties (PRP) will conduct the activities associated with this project. The first phase of the work was conducted last year to remove debris; this phase is designed to study the planned dredging and capping system according to the clean up plan.
There will be equipment and barges in the 4th Street Basin. Preparatory dredging to create enough space to allow access for more equipment further into the 4th Street Basin is planned to begin October 5. The first activities will be to stabilize the shores. Bulkhead work should occur between 10/23 and 10/31 and continue into November. By the first week of December, dredging should be ready to begin. The dredging will occur over at least two months, capping should take place by the end of April or beginning of May 2018. During this work, there will be some barges moored in the canal and the canal will be narrowed, so you won’t be able to access the 4th Street Basin next to Public Place.
EPA will conduct a meeting with the PRPs in November to discuss the 65% design for the cleanup activities related to the dredging and the capping of the upper portion of the Canal. By this design phase, the scientific and engineering questions (e.g. what kind of cap, how will the sediment be treated, where will the sediment go) have to be answered.
By November, the designs of the upper canal bulkheads that have not been completed or planned by private groups will also be released. The PRP group will submit a draft final bulkhead design by mid October.
The aim is to use results from the 4th Street Basin pilot as lessons and apply them to the entire area. EPA will incorporate lessons from the pilot into the 95% design scheduled for February 2019. EPA will try to share the lessons learned from the pilot while the studies are being conducted and compiled. There are lengthy internal reviews.
New York City government’s role in the cleanup may look something like that at the 1st Street Basin, where the city took measurements, did work, and incorporated measures for EPA to review.
Quite a bit of contaminated soil removal is about to be completed at the Powerhouse site. A cap was installed there and reviewed by Brian and Christos from the EPA. This cap is more stringent than NYS Brownfields policy requires for site development, as EPA requires additional work to prove whether any contamination will continue there.
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