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There are thousands of brownfields in New York on former Manufactured Gas Plants (MGP) similar to the Public Place site in Gowanus, Brooklyn. Public Place is an active brownfield abutting an EPA Superfund site currently undergoing remediation. After consulting recent literature finding that populations living on and near superfund sites have lower life expectancy that also correlate with “sociodemographic factors” like income and race, we used American Community Survey data to conduct a demographic analysis of census districts within the rezone area. Assessment of current demographic data shows that Gowanus residents living within census districts overlapping with the rezone area are both less wealthy and more racially diverse than residents in surrounding districts. Environmental justice and public health concerns remain after remediation of Public Place and other Gowanus brownfields because of the extent of pollution and flood conditions of this area. However, if rezoning is implemented, demographics of this area will likely change in ways that complicate correlations between race, income, and environmental justice.


This poster was presented at the 34th Semi-Annual Dr. Janet Liou-Mark Honors & Undergraduate Research Poster Presentation, May 5, 2021. Mentor: Prof. Nora Almeida (Library).



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