On June 27th, Untapped New York took the Freshkills Tour run by the New York City Dept of Parks and Recreation. Construction has only recently begun but we got a glimpse of the site’s potential by traversing the topography below expansive skies. Overall, I was struck by the gravity of the debate between the retroactive masking of human excess and a binary apprehension of pragmatism/optimism regarding the reappropriation of public space from once foundering land. Architect Bruce Sparano kindly provided us with the counterposition on Freshkills, written by his colleague John May, a geographer and architect, in the July 2008 edition of Verb Crisis. Though beautiful and well-written, addressing the complicity of an architecture without social purpose, the cynic in me thirsted for yet even more evidence.

How to Visit: By tour only by the Department of Parks and Recreation, sign up and meet here.

Top Photo: view from mound one. Bottom photo, clockwise from top left: vegetation on mound one, mound three being capped with impermeable seal, view from mound two, methane collection pump.  



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  4. Hi Michelle-

    Thanks for attending the Freshkills tour. We at the Parks Department appreciate your article; however, I have one correction. The tours are run by the CITY Parks Department.

    Thanks again and we hope to see you again as the park begins further development.


    Trish Bertuccio
    Press Officer
    NYC Parks & Recreation

    • Michelle Young says:

      Thanks Trish! I have made the correction – am excited to stay connected for the progress and upcoming events!

  5. Grant says:

    I mean, did it smell bad? Is it even a feasible project to cover up a dumping ground?

    Also, could you provide a google map to the location and ways to get there? Is it worth a visit?

    Nice bloggin’,

  6. Michelle Young says:

    Hi Grant – there is no smell. The Fresh Kills team gave some detail regarding why this is on the last post. Regarding feasibility, it is like any debate colored with extremes – I am working on (as best as possible) an unbiased point-counterpoint regarding the technology. The only way to visit the site right now is via the tour, which meets at the Eltingville Transit Center in Staten Island. I have updated this post with the information. Thanks!

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