Newtown Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant
Located in Brooklyn’s Greenpoint community, Newtown Creek is the largest of New York City’s 14 wastewater treatment plants. Plant expansion and redesign have also included thoughtful development of the quarter-mile Newtown Creek Waterfront Nature Walk with its unique architectural features, plantings and environmental sculpture, as well as stunning views of New York City and the nearby industrial landscape.
Redesigning the Plant
Faced with an outdated and environmentally unsound facility, DEP teamed with a group of world-class architects, designers and engineers and the Newtown Creek Monitoring Committee, a volunteer, citizen oversight committee appointed by the City to represent the community’s interests. Together they developed a plan that meets the needs of the City’s growing population and responds to the community’s environmental and aesthetic concerns.
Polshek Partnership is lead architect and master planner, working with environmental engineering consultants Greeley and Hansen, Hazen and Sawyer and Malcolm Pirnie and lighting artist Hervé Descottes of L’Observatoire International. Environmental sculptor George Trakas designed Newtown Creek Nature Walk. The project’s design and construction are being phased in over a ten-year period with the plant remaining fully operational throughout the process.
The New York City Public Design Commission (formerly the Art Commission) has honored Newtown Creek with five Awards for Excellence in Design, citing the project’s sensitivity to the challenge of locating, and in this case expanding, a large-scale industrial project within a residential neighborhood.