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.
The ride down was organized by 5BBC who also recently took us to the bridge that saved a nation.
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Today we took a walk around the bunkers of Fort Tilden and along the beach at Rockaway.
A barrel of balls, a bucket of colourful plastic and the remnants of a boat greeted me on my arrival to Paerdegat Basin. As I walked through the reeds and rubbish, I also came across a car wreck that evoked a safari adventure gone horribly wrong.
Seaview Hospital on Staten Island was once a tuberculosis center and an insane asylum. We spent some time exploring the vast grounds on Sunday. Under the building pictured above was a large basement, from which a doorway led to another chamber too dark to explore. The door was labelled Dad’s Place.
More scenes from Seaview Hospital here.
On Sunday I took a walk around The Hole. A low-lying area of liminal land on the border of Brooklyn and Queens. I saw several cats and met some horses. More of which later.
This afternoon I took a walk around the wetland next to the intersections of Shore Parkway and Flatbush Avenue.
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