The Gowanus Canal Superfund site was one of the hidden shames of Brooklyn in 1989 and hardly anyone knew its history and problems. Taking a walk from Carroll Gardens to Park Slope, I crossed the Third Street Bridge for the first time. The Twin Towers peeked above a lumberyard and the sky reflected off the water. So began a 30-year project photographing the revitalization of the waterway.
Today, everything on the left bank of the canal is gone, with industrial buildings disappearing with new condominiums rising in place.
The area around the Gowanus Canal is one of the last undeveloped areas in the heart of Brooklyn's most expensive real estate. The waterway was designated an EPA Superfund site in 2010 with the current cost of the overall cleanup plan estimated to be over $1.5 billion, and the entire project won’t be completed until mid-2023.
Clouds reflect in the water of the Gowanus Canal looking north with the Twin Towers peeking above the shoreline. The wall reflected in the water has no graffiti in 1989 and downtown Brooklyn has not risen to its new heights.
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