The history of industrial New York is deeply etched along the banks of this waterway separating the boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens. Today it is among the most polluted creeks in the nation owing to a legacy of industry dating long before the environmental movement. With 4 miles of protected shore line, extensive rail connections and proximity to Manhattan, Newtown Creek was a natural place for industry to thrive in the mid-19th century. The former salt marsh transformed into an industrial canal and soon was home to some of the dirtiest businesses in the city. Oil refineries, glue factories, tanneries and copper refineries sprouted up along the creek into the 20th leaving a toxic legacy that lingers underneath the ground. The most well-known environmental disaster along the creek is the Greenpoint Oil Plume, an estimated 17-30 million gallons of oil that slowly leaked into the creek and under the neighborhood over the span of decades. The creek also suffers from a combined sewer system that gets overwhelmed when it rains, discharging millions of gallons of raw sewage into the water. With the overhaul of the Newtown Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant, Exxon's remediation efforts and the recent Superfund designation for the entire creek there is a hope for a cleaner future. Today the creek is not the economic engine it once was but serves vital functions for the city by keeping scrap metal recycling, sewage treatment, oil storage, and distribution facilities out of sight and out of mind for the New Yorkers passing high above it on its bridges and elevated expressways.
English Kill sewage outfall
Nycon Ready Mix
Fresh Direct Billboard
Wastewater Treatment Plant
Empire Transit Mix
Long Island Railroad Bushwick Spur
East River Ferry Greenpoint
Island Transportation
Meeker Avenue
Gantry Plaza State Park
Metro Auto Salvage
Review Avenue
Long Island Expressway
Calvary Cemetery
Greenpoint Storage
Pumps Strip Club
Kosciusko Bridge
Premier Poultry Inc
Waste Management
East River Ferry Long Island City
Feldman Lumber
Monitor Street
300 Stagg St Corp
Five Pointz
Hunters Point South
McGuinness Management
Waste Management
J&S Supply Corporation
Sunnyside Yard
Grand Street Bridge
Meadow Street
Allocco Recycling
Universal Used Auto Parts
Newtown Creek Nature Walk
Newtown Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant
Vandervoort International Trading
Conch Umbrellas
New York Paving Inc
National Grid Energy
Maspeth Creek and the Kosciuszko Bridge
National Envelope Corporation