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.
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.