Conduit to go green

Ground was recently broken on a cutting edge, green infrastructure project along the Conduit in Ozone Park.
The $730,000 project will capture and treat stormwater runoff along North and South Conduit Avenues, helping improve the water quality of Jamaica Bay.
Like many older urban areas, storm water and waste water are carried through a single pipe. During heavy rainstorms, the drainage system reaches a capacity and discharges this excess water, which is both the stormwater and wastewater, called combined sewer overflow, or CSO, into New York Harbor.
The project, covering a nine-acre area, will help prevent overflow by maximizing stormwater retention using soil, sand, stone and vegetation, thereby creating a 13,000-square-foot bioretention zone. This specially engineered basin will have the capacity to hold and divert at least 200,000 gallons of water, roughly 90 percent of stormwater from a moderate storm, and will also be able to filter out pollutants as the water passes through.
“This project will have a positive impact on our local environment, especially for Jamaica Bay,” said Councilmember Eric Ulrich. “I applaud the DEP’s commitment to upgrading the city’s water management system.”
In addition to the green infrastructure there will also be a series of drainage modifications to ensure the stormwater drains into the bioretention zone.
This project is part of a larger plan unveiled by Mayor Bloomberg in September, the NYC Green Infrastructure Plan, which aims to reduce sewer overflow by 40 percent by 2030. In addition to reducing overflow, it will also help save $2.4 billion since it will reduce costly investments in traditional sewage retention projects known as gray infrastructure
“Traditional gray infrastructure investments, like tanks and tunnels, still provide benefits, but green infrastructure must be part of any successful citywide CSO strategy,” said Environmental Protection Commissioner Cas Holloway.
The Conduit project is the biggest job the plan has undertaken so far, said spokesperson for the DEP Mercedes Padilla.
The project aims to be completed by the end of the spring.

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