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Goal: Improve the quality of our waterways to increase opportunities for recreation and restore coastal ecosystems

We are one of the world’s great waterfront cities, with 520 miles of waterfront. But we have yet to fully realize the promise of our waterways. To fulfill this potential, we must restore our natural areas and improve the cleanliness of the water itself.

That is why we will upgrade our wastewater treatment plants. We will increase their capacity and improve the quality of the water they discharge. We will make cost-effective “grey infrastructure” investments that will reduce the impact of combined sewer overflows around some of our more polluted waterways, but they alone will not sufficiently raise the quality of our waterways to desired levels.

We will address the root cause of pollution by making a transformative investment in green infrastructure that captures or detains stormwater before it can enter and overwhelm the sewer system. By working with our Federal and State partners, we will ensure that our most contaminated tributaries are cleaned up and critical wetlands are restored.

Through these water quality improvements and restoration efforts, we will create a healthier habitat not just for the people enjoying nature, but for all other species who call this region home. 

WaterWaysPlaNYC 2011 chapter on WaterwaysDownload the chapter (in PDF)