October 5, 2004: Judge stops Bronx water project

1005 Bronx Water Treatment PlantOctober 5, 2004New York Times headline–Judge Stops Bronx Water Project. “A State Supreme Court justice, William A. Wetzel, has temporarily stopped the city from beginning to build a $1.3 billion water filtration plant in Van Cortlandt Park in the Bronx. Last week, the City Council cleared the project, despite neighborhood protests that the plant would ruin parkland and disrupt a quiet neighborhood for years; on Friday, the judge issued the restraining order which had been sought by a civic group, Friends of Van Cortlandt Park. The group said that the city had failed to comply with zoning laws.” Commentary: No one said that building a new water treatment plant would be easy. Of course, this delay was not significant and construction of the Croton Water Treatment Plant proceeded.

Here is an update on the plant:

Croton Water Filtration Plant Activated

May 8, 2015

Largest Underground Filtration Plant in the United States has the Capacity to Filter up to 290 Million Gallons of Drinking Water Each Day;  Will Protect the City against the Possibility of Drought and the Effects of Climate Change

Photos of the Project and Maps are available on DEP’s Flickr Page

New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Commissioner Emily Lloyd today announced that the $3.2 billion Croton Filtration Plant was recently activated and water from the Croton water supply system has been reintroduced into the city’s distribution network for the first time since 2008.  Built beneath Van Cortlandt Park in the Bronx, preparatory site work and excavation for the 400,000 square foot facility began in 2004.  Construction commenced in 2007 and, at the height of the work, roughly 1,300 laborers were on-site.  In addition to building the plant, the 33-mile long New Croton Aqueduct was rehabilitated and three new water tunnels were constructed to bring water to the plant, and then from the plant back to the distribution system.  With the capacity to filter up to 290 million gallons of water a day, the state of the art facility can provide roughly 30 percent of the city’s current daily water needs.”

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