You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘Gowanus Canal’ tag.

I’m surprised I’ve not heard this be called DUBQEG, “down under Brooklyn-Queens Expressway of Gowanus” a la DUMBO.

I was here last week waiting for … and when the twin bascules of the Hamilton Street Bridge, I thought it was someone else, but

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I was equally pleased to see Sarah Ann–previously June K–arrive to exchange scrap scows,

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exchanging the light 141 for the loaded 136.

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Two things that really impressed me were (1. the intensity of multi-modal traffic at this location and

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(2. the gentleness with which the Sarah Ann crew negotiated her 2700 hp in such confined space.

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And yes that is a Coney Island bound F train approaching the Smith-Ninth Street Station, the highest subway stop in the system, one from which you can see the Statue.

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Scrapping needs to happen somewhere in the city,

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and it continues to be one aspect of marine commerce in Gowanus.

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Bravo to the Sarah Ann crew for their impressive work.

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All photos by Will Van Dorp.

 

I have many more Gmelin photos, but as an indication that I still inhabit the present-day sixth boro, I’ll show some sign of life for a few days.

For outatowners, Gowanus Creek (now Canal) is one of the most polluted waterways in the US, which is no secret to locals.  By the way, Gowanus rhymes with “you want us” with a silent “t.”

I took this photo this week just upstream of the 9th Street Bridge.  In fact, when a man swam down the Canal last year, he wore some serious hazmat protection, as the Media Boat shows here.

What I was not aware of is how much effort is going into addressing the accumulated pollution of more than a century.

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This barge holds several excavators at work in the Fourth Street Turning Basin, one of the dead ends in the Canal.

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As needed, the barge is moved by this small tug/pushboat that might be called 1337E.

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Besides black goop that I might photograph next time, wood and other detritus is being plucked from the bottom.

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Gowanus, there’s hope.  I’ll be back.

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Click here and here for some posts I did when I last visited the Canal . . . in 2011 and 2013.

As to connections between the Gowanus area of Brooklyn and the Erie Canal, click here.  For a photo of the Gowanus Bay New York State Canal Freight Terminal, click here and scroll to p. 22.

Here was 15.

What is this?  Foto was taken on Colonels Row, Governors Island.

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Energy saver of the future?

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Prison cage?

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Recycling?

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Construction material?

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Fish habitat?

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Monitoring device?

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You’ll have to wait til tomorrow at least for the answer.  It is pretty, though.

Exactly a year ago, I put up this matrix on a barge. 

All fotos by Will Van Dorp.

(Doubleclick enlarges most fotos.) When I visited Village Community Boathouse (VCB) late last winter, we discussed a “photographic rowfari” to the Gowanus, come spring.  Spring has arrived, and so . .. yesterday, John Magnus and JML

constructed by volunteers at VCB were lowered into the north River at Pier 40 and

after some adjustments, the hearty crews rowed toward their destination,

making a stop to greet the folks at Red Hook Boaters near Valentino Pier before

heading farther south.

Once past Erie Basin, we turned into Gowanus Bay, past the Loujiane, the grain elevators,

part of the Vane fleet, docked where the previous tenant’s name still graces the wall,

past the experiment vessel Jerko

with its famous tender Mare Liberum. . . floating above all manner of artifacts there for the collecting . . . farther up the canal untl we reached it . . .

huge bubbles?  Reverse maelstrom?  Vortex reversus?  Belch of sludge lusus naturae?  Maybe it’s just evidence that the flushing canal actually functions in spite of its sisyphean task of cleaning what has been rendered most foul?

In spite of Gowanus‘ uberpolluted condition, an ecosystem exists, with feral cats,

mussels,

an intrepid canoe club,

predators and prey.

Is the intention of this sign (above a novel use of tires) to invite us back?  See the VCB version of events here.

Questions I have are . . .  how soon might the Canal’s Superfund status show results?

Unrelated but possibly good news related to South Street Seaport   . . .  we all who pledged may have the pleasure of sending in our Benjamin Franklins . . . .

And a heads-up for next week . . .  Hudson River Pageant, involving some of Village Community Boathouse’s rowing gigs!

Related and very important . .  . if you’re in a human-powered and relatively small vessel, be aware that you are difficult to spot for huge cargo vessels of all kinds that travel fast and have limited maneuverability.  Read Towmasters post here

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Graves of Arthur Kill

Click on image below to order your copy of Graves of Arthur Kill, by Gary Kane and Will Van Dorp. 3Fish Productions.

Seth Tane American Painting

Read my Iraq Hostage memoir online.

My Babylonian Captivity

Reflections of an American hostage in Iraq, 20 years later.

Tale of Two Marlins

Blue Marlin spent 600+ hours loading tugs and barges in NYC Sixth Boro. Click on image for presentation made to NY Ship Lore and Model Club, July 25, 2011.

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