Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Short News Stories No. 8

Things To Do
The Environmental Protection Agency says that about $300 billion is needed over the next 20 years to clean up the nation's water. That's $192 billion for public wastewater pipes, $64 billion to correct combined sewer overflow problems and $42 billion for stormwater management. The report, out in June, represents an increase of 17 percent from its 2004 report, attributed to better reporting, population growth and better water quality standards.
Engineering News Record, June 2010.

Real Mixed Use
A mixed-use project in downtown Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, features condos next to a sewage treatment plant. Dockside Green has docks over a network of ponds and waterways that circulates wastewater from a nearby underground sewage treatment plant. The Water is used for toilets and on the landscape, reducing residents' water bills. Eventually the project is to contain 2,500 residents plus office and retail. Another innovation is a heating plant using local wood waste to generate gas that heats the units and water. The architect is Busby Perkins and Will. The city's aim is to retain Victoria's working waterfront amid the newer development.
The New York Times, July 7, 2010.

Sponge Park
The Gowanus Canal in Brooklyn for years has been a seriously polluted water body, earning it the dubious distinction of landing on the Environmental Protection Agency's Superfund National Priorities List. There's now a plan to establish new stormwater absorbing parklands along the shore that would remediate rain water and reduce combined sewer overflows. And provide better public access. Initial funding of $185,000 from the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission has been received. The Gowanus Canal Sponge Park is expected to receive another $938,000 from other sources. The park is the idea of Susannah Drake of diandstudio.
WaterWire, newsletter of the Metropolitan Waterfront Alliance, New York City, August 13, 2010.

Thinking Big
At the juncture of the Yangtze, Jiajiang and Qinhuaixin Rivers near Nanjing is to be established a 460-acre "new town." The SWA Group of Houston, landscape architects, planners and urban designers, has been selected to design the undertaking. It is to serve as a new cultural destination for the city, with an art museum, waterfront activities, an "eco-hotel" plus shopping and office space. The brownfield site will be restored using strips of bio film planted at the water's edge on small floating islands to stimulate plants and provide animal habitat. Nanjiang Hexi New Town Development will occupy seven kilometers along the Yangtze.
Engineering News Record, June 28, 2010.

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