The Department of City Planning (DCP) has launched the Flushing Creek Study to explore opportunities to support the ecological health of Flushing Creek. The plan will identify the barriers to improving the health of the creek, outline the steps to remove such barriers, and examine where funds for future ecological restoration projects could be directed.
The Flushing Creek Study is made possible by a grant from the New York State Department of State under Title 11 of the Environmental Protection Fund.
The Flushing Creek Study is an outgrowth of the Flushing Waterfront Revitalization Plan, a Brownfield Opportunity Area (BOA) Nomination Study. The BOA study was prepared by DCP with funding provided by the NYS Department of State Brownfield Opportunity Area Program, on behalf of the Flushing Willets Point Corona LDC, for a 62-acre area of former industrial properties to the west of Downtown Flushing. The area was designated as a BOA by New York State in 2018.
DCP anticipates the BOA designation will help catalyze the redevelopment of brownfield sites on the eastern edge of Flushing Creek with new mixed-use development with waterfront public access and improved circulation between Downtown Flushing and Flushing Creek.
The Flushing Creek Study will focus on the water quality and ecology of Flushing Creek to complement expected changes in land use pending the clean-up and revitalization of nearby brownfield sites. Among its objectives, the plan will identify the process for deauthorizing a segment of a Federal Navigation Channel that is no longer used for maritime purposes and prepare documentation to justify repurposing the channel. This deauthorization would enable additional ecological restoration work to take place in Flushing Creek.
The Flushing Creek Study will build on ongoing efforts by the NYC Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to mitigate combined sewer overflows in the creek (such as the Flushing Creek CSO Long Term Control Plan and Green Infrastructure Program) as well as other projects being led by federal, state, and city agencies. In particular, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) is proposing a wetlands restoration project to improve the ecology of Flushing Creek south of the Roosevelt Avenue bridge as part of the Hudson-Raritan Estuary Ecosystem Restoration Feasibility Study.
Public outreach for the Flushing Creek Study will commence in April 2019 and preliminary recommendations will be available in August 2019.
An initial public meeting for the Flushing Creek Study was held Tuesday, April 2, 2019 from 7:00 to 9:00 PM at the Union Plaza Care Center in Flushing. Queens Community Board 7 co-hosted the event, which provided an opportunity for approximately 40 attendees to learn about the study and share feedback about their concerns and goals for improving Flushing Creek.
The meeting opened with a presentation by the NYC Department of City Planning that provided a general overview of the Flushing Creek Study, including the study area, project scope, and timeline.
Next, the NYC Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) gave a presentation on the array of existing initiatives that DEP and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers are overseeing in Flushing Bay and Flushing Creek, including the Long Term Control Plans to control Combined Sewer Overflows (CSO) into the bay and creek, the NYC Green Infrastructure Program, and the Hudson-Raritan Estuary Ecosystem Restoration Feasibility Study. View the presentation.
To learn more, please contact us at FlushingCreekPlan@planning.nyc.gov.
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