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Gowanus Canal Modular Floodplain

Water_Works Competition Gowanus by Design

A competition to address the problem of water polution caused by "combined sewer overflow" due to storm and sanitary sewers using the same pipes.

Pilot Projects Entry: Modular Floodplain

Honorable Mention for Urban Ecology

Gowanus is synonymous with the best and worst of industry: Innovation and manufacturing in the heart of NYC, along with industrial waste leached into neighborhoods and watersheds.

The new focus of industry must apply innovation and entrepreneurship to improving the environment for people and the biosphere. Rather than abandoning or hiding industrial icons and systems, we propose to reclaim them for restoration and resilience, transforming these functional and symbolic frameworks into a new typology.

Our bio-industrial armature cleans waste water through a modular “floodplain system.” 40 shipping containers hold bio-remediation wetland plants and soil. An industrial gantry crane services each module and barge docking allows containers to be relocated with low-energy transport. Water cleaned by the system is released into the canal or further treated at the community center.

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