This weekend I got to wander a Brooklyn landscape that resembled my old Suffolk home more than anywhere else I’ve seen this side of the pond — and it used to be a huge garbage landfill site. Gentle hills, empty trails, butterflies and wild flowers are all part of the newly restored Pen Park, just yards from the Belt Parkway. Thanks to the Jamaica Bay Greenway Coalition for setting up the trip, and to NYCDEP for access and the guided walk around the site.
“Where once was visible garbage, native little bluestem and other grasses wave in the winds off the water. Small plantings of cedars, oaks and pine trees are beginning to thrive. Osprey are nesting along the shoreline. Gravel roads circle the shoreline of the landfills and run to their summit, offering extraordinary 360-degree views of the Manhattan skyline to the Atlantic Ocean.” From The Regional Plan Association.
I recently got invited to photograph the awesome buildOn students at their fund-raising event in Williamsburg.
“buildOn’s afterschool youth service programs mobilize urban teens to lift up their communities and change the world through intensive local community service and by building schools in some of the poorest countries on the planet. We are a movement of students, educators and communities. We believe in the power of partnerships that passionately act for the common good. Through our afterschool programs, teens inspire people across neighborhoods, across cities, and across continents to reach and think beyond their realm of possibility.”
Hundreds waited for MTA subway-replacement buses while dispatchers tried to keep things moving in Downtown Brooklyn today. NYPD checked cars had at least three passengers before allowing them to cross the East River into Manhattan. Many were avoiding the severe congestion and huge queues by cycling. You can see the full set of images here.