Green Eggs Wetland Project
The project team, composed of Deborah Masters, Jackie Brookner, and Kate Zidar, propose to develop a unique open space on a lot adjacent to Newtown Creek. The space, called the Green Eggs Wetland (wait for it…), will clean polluted stormwater before it enters the Superfund-designated creek and create an “asthma free” clean air zone within. This project will make the filtration processes visible and educational, and create valuable green space for passive recreation. A series of aesthetically designed wetlands will detain and filter stormwater collected from the neighborhood, then release the clean water into Newtown Creek.
The team proposes a variety of features in the parkland:
The Wetlands portion of the park will look like a meandering brook with an adjacent walkway. This would be the first step of cleaning the stormwater, entering the site from nearby stormwater and CSO pipes, and potentially from paved surfaces nearby. The wetlands contain stone aggregate and specially chosen plants to provide habitat for beneficial microorganisms that have the capacity to metabolize toxins and pollutants. As water flows through the wetlands and over the large green eggs (Biosculptures), the plants and beneficial bacteria transform pollutants and toxins into nutrients, cleaning the water in the process. The water is aerated as it journeys through the system. Both the wetlands and the Biosculptures are natural water treatment systems that demonstrate how there is no waste in healthy natural systems. Rather, the “waste” of one organism becomes food for another.
Three large-scale Green Eggs, or Biosculptures™, that echo the egg shapes of the iconic digesters across the street in the Sewage Treatment Plant will “polish” the water, the last stage of the stormwater filtration. Biosculptures™ are sculpted, vegetated ecosystems that function as biogeochemical filters. Made of mosses, ferns and other plants growing on stone, concrete, or metal structures, they provide ecological and aesthetic solutions to water quality and water quantity problems. Two of the eggs would have a steel and latticework structure, which would support the different kinds of foliage. Water would trickle through the foliage until it was 100% clean and would then make its way into Newtown Creek. These two eggs would have tall entryways, which would allow a visitor to enter their chambers and breathe deep. The space within would be totally fresh and clean, as the foliage would also clean the air within the eggs. The internal space would be a kind of clean air/meditation chamber free of the environmental pollution so persistent in Greenpoint.
The Third Egg would be a slightly different structure, with the same foliage and water activity on the outside, but with an interior - a waterproof room that would be used as an environmental classroom/community meeting space. A permanent display of some of the scientific principles at work in the Green Eggs Wetland Project would be on view there.