Will Gowanus Canal improvements beget a mixed-use neighborhood?

Advocacy group Gowanus by Design has launched a competition that asks participants to submit entries envisioning the future of the contaminated Gowanus Canal. Patch reported the contest has drawn entries from across the country, and has even been the focus of coursework in some colleges.

The competition tests whether a new water retention facility and community center can be designed on the superfund site to strengthen surrounding infrastructure and educate the community about the challenges the canal faces.  The group believes those additions would help give rise to the neighborhood as a mixed-use one.

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This is not the first community effort to solve the issues surrounding the contaminated canal and to give it new life. As previously reported, Gowanus residents have taken clean-up efforts into their own hands by replanting gardens and using fly-over photography to create maps analyzing street run-offs during rain storms.

Previous reports have indicated that once the city, state and federal clean-up is done — decades down the line — the neighborhood can have up to 2,000 additional residential units, priming the area for a residential rebirth. [Patch]