Freshkills Park Blog

Leading the Charge for a Sustainable Tomorrow

Batteries work on positive and negatives, much like our daily lives work on batteries.  Today is National Battery Day, and while the origins are not definitively known, February 18th commemorates the birth of Alessandro Volta, the “father” of the battery. 

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Backyard Bird Count

Birdwatching has increasingly become a new hobby for many. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, this has been particularly true, as it is an activity that can be safely done outdoors.

Did you know that recording the birds you see and keeping a checklist can contribute to the scientific community?

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Freshkills Park Welcomes New Board Members

The Freshkills Park Alliance (FKPA) is the conservancy partner with the City of New York in its work to develop Freshkills Park. As the park build out continues, the Alliance makes the park visible to the public through interdisciplinary programs and advocacy, welcoming visitors to experience the site now before it is fully open to the public and ensuring its continued transformation and accessibility.

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Goats: Good for wetlands, Baaad for Phragmites

The Covid-19 pandemic has impacted virtually every aspect of our daily lives. Our outdoor spaces, including our urban parks, have seen huge increases in usage while also facing budget cuts that have limited maintenance staff and operations. This fall, volunteers supported Freshkills Park by removing invasive species and planting a biodiversity garden at Schmul Park.

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Board Member Nancy Hechinger leaves with our Thanks

Nancy Hechinger

Friends, Colleagues and Partners of the Freshkills Park Alliance,

On behalf of the Board of Directors at the Freshkills Park Alliance, with both sadness and gratitude, we are announcing the resignation of Nancy Hechinger from the Board.  She was a founding member of the Board in 2006 and has been an active and energetic contributor and source of support to the Freshkills Park Alliance ever since.

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2020 Christmas Bird Count

The National Audubon Society’s Christmas Bird Count (CBC) represents perhaps one of the largest and most comprehensive animal censuses on the planet. The power of this incredible survey is attributed to the tens of thousands of volunteers that participate every year.

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Ripping off Wrapping Paper & Upcycling

We are in the middle of the holiday season and as the saying goes, all that glitters is not gold.  Between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day, Americans produce about 25% more waste than normal, which adds up to about a million pounds a week. 

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It’s Weird Duck Time: Meet the Freshkills Quack-pack

As the colorful warblers, flycatchers, and tanagers move south to escape the blustery winters of the northeast, the first few weeks of fall bring a rush of cool air and changing leaves. However, this change of season also brings in some very unusual waterfowl to our area.

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Volunteers plant a Pollinator Garden at Schmul Park

This fall, a new pollinator garden was planted at Schmul Park in the Travis neighborhood of Staten Island. Schmul Park was Freshkills Park’s first capital project, designed by James Corner Field Operations and completed in 2013.  Schmul Park is also soon to become a neighborhood entrance to the 22 acre North Park Phase 1 which is under construction and scheduled to be complete in 2021. 

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Honoring the 51st Anniversary of Black Solidarity Day

Commissioner Mitchell J. Silver, FAICP announced on Juneteenth (the annual commemoration of the end of slavery in the United States) that the Parks Department would be renaming 10 park spaces throughout the five boros to honor the Black experience in New York City. 

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A look back on Fall 2020

It was yet another busy Fall at Freshkills Park this year. While we were unable to host our annual Discovery Day, we were excited to welcome back small groups for outdoor programming that included the necessary safety precautions.  Participants experienced the landfill-to-park transformation through nature walks, birding, photography tours, and kayaking.

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Rethinking the cost of Trash

It is no secret that NYC agencies, like the NYC Department of Parks and Recreation and the NYC Department of Sanitation (DSNY) have suffered significant budget cuts as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. At the same time, parks and open spaces are experiencing larger crowds because people need to get out of their apartments and parks are a safe place to social distance. 

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Interview with Artist partner Jade Doskow

Since its inception, the Freshkills Park team has fostered partnerships with artists from a variety of disciplines in an effort to document this preliminary phase of park development through creative expression. Over time, a number of works have emerged, ranging from ink studies produced within the confines of an old shipping container to bound notebooks created from the park’s ubiquitous invasive Phragmites plant

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Go Green this Sustain-a-ween!

Halloween is on a Saturday this year, which means plenty of time for various Halloween activities.  This year make it a Sustain-a-ween! Halloween decorations and treats are fun, but what happens to everything afterwards?  Plastic Halloween decorations and candy wrappers aren’t recyclable and are likely to end up in a landfill. 

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Superstorms and Wetlands

As we approach the 8th anniversary of Superstorm Sandy, it is time to remember and consider the impact the superstorm had on Staten Island and the rest of the city. NYC lost 43 people to Superstorm Sandy and half of those were Staten Islanders.

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Open House Freshkills Park

Freshkills Park is once again participating in Open House New York, which is going virtual for 2020. Whether this is your first visit or you’ve been here before, welcome to Staten Island and to Freshkills Park. Start with a look around, and keep an eye out for the Manhattan skyline in the distance.

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Science at Freshkills Park: Water Monitoring

Checkout a behind the scenes look at the science and wildlife in Freshkills Park. The Freshkills team will discuss water quality parameters, like dissolved oxygen which marine life needs to survive, as they collect data and samples for the Interstate Environmental Comission’s volunteer water monitoring program....MORE

Rare Sedge Wrens Nest in New York City for the First Time since 1960 at Freshkills Park

Grassland birds have rapidly declined throughout North America, and have experienced some of the steepest population declines of any group of birds in the United States. Since its transformation into an urban greenspace, Freshkills Park has become the home of many important species of grassland birds, including Grasshopper Sparrows, Bobolinks, and Eastern Meadowlarks.

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Conservancy Corps: Zaheer Baber

Introduce yourself! Name, title, background, education, hometown etc. 

Hi! My name is Zaheer Baber, I’m a intern with the Conservancy Corps for the fall of 2020! I’m currently studying to be a teacher. I love teaching and learning, as we are always learning new things everyday and then teaching them to others.

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Produce Just Ripe

Have you ever bought produce that wasn’t quite ready and then shot past ripe, so the only choice was to throw it away?   The thought of wasted produce may put a damper on what you buy and what you eat.  In New York State, about 4 million tons of food waste, or about 18% of the total waste produced, is shipped to landfills. 

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