Monday, June 23, 2008
Remediation effort in the Rockaways
Beachgoers heading to the Rockaways this summer may find a lot of company of the roads, in the form of dump trucks carrying piles of contaminated dirt.
A 9-acre site that was once home to a gas plant is slated to be cleaned up starting in August - an endeavor that involves transporting 80,000 cubic yards of toxin-laden soil through local streets.
Residents are also concerned about what will happen to the expansive property along Beach Channel Drive and Beach 108th St. after the remediation is complete.
Rockaways bracing for removal of contaminated soil
The DEC estimates there is 1.2 million cubic yards of contaminated material at the site, but it would be too costly and impractical to remediate it all.
The agency's 2004 report also states that "groundwater contamination is evident across the entire site, extending only a small distance beyond the site limits."
Some environmentalists are calling for the property - facing Jamaica Bay - to be preserved as open space, noting the recent housing boom on the peninsula.
"The Rockaways are just overdeveloped," said Don Riepe of the American Littoral Society. "We need more parks. It should be preserved."