Date of Submission

Spring 2016

Academic Programs and Concentrations

Environmental and Urban Studies

Project Advisor 1

Elias Dueker

Abstract/Artist's Statement

The Saw Mill River has been the life source of Yonkers, NY since before the Dutch arrived on its shore. After, the settlements the river continued to be used as a source of power to create a large industrial town. It soon became contaminated and could no longer be the viable waterway that it had once been so; it was covered to protect the citizens from the smell and pollution. Now after almost a century of the Saw Mill River remaining hidden under building and asphalt there has been a new movement to daylight the river and bring it back to the surface so it can help stimulate the economy of a now stagnant Getty Square. Studies and reports have been written to note the amount of pollution and stress the river is under and to try to repair it, it also saw a large increase in fecal bacteria as it left the Getty Square area. However, 5 years after the studies the findings are much the same. A 12 sample day study into the environmental factors, like dissolved oxygen, salinity, and turbidity, and fecal bacterial indicators, like total coliform, E.coli and enterococcus levels, have found that the Saw Mill River continues to be highly stresses and can be considered an impaired waterway. The investigation also found no significant difference between Site 1 and Site 2 so it is unlikely that Getty Square is the main source of the fecal bacteria. There are health implications of daylighting a heavily impaired that have to be reviewed and better understood.

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