D3 Natural Systems / Green Bridge



Project Year: 2013

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On October 29, 2012, Hurricane Sandy hit New York City severely. In particular, a ConEd transformer on the East River at 14th street, a vulnerable, unprotected site, was damaged leaving 20% of the five boroughs without power for four days.

Just north of the transformer is Stuyvesant Town, a development housing 25,000 residents, with scant access to parks and open-air entertainment. Across the East River from the transformer lies Greenpoint, once the farmland for the nascent city. Factories soon replaced the fields and with them came serious environmental challenges, notably waste treatment and oil spills. Today, rezoning of the neighborhood calls for residential friendly planning and dealing with its environmental legacy.

We propose the G-Bridge, a biommetric structure between Stuyvesant Town and Greenpoint, that addresses the issues above in a threefold program:

I. Protect ConEd's transformer from future surges: through retaining walls made of recycled materials and compacted junck blocks
II. Recover Greenpoint's farming origins: The main body of the structure reinterprets Greenpoint's past farm-like ecosystem. Wetlands recollect rain water, bio-filtrate contaminated water with macrophytes and channel it back to Newtown Creek for final purification. Local flora and fauna will coexist. Finally space is dedicated to urban-farms for residents.
III. Connect the two neighborhoods: A community ecosystem of pollution free transportation (tram, bicycle and pedestrian paths), and green public spaces (including outdoor cafés and restaurants, sports facilities and concert venues. The G-Bridge contributes to the Mayor's "Greener Greater New York" plan by bringing new life into old industrial neighborhoods, promoting recreation, enhancing economic development through higher property value, and strengthening the inhabitants' sense of belonging.
 
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