Last summer, the Gowanus Canal Conservancy and Alloy Development collaborated on the 2000 Gallon Project, a pop-up nursery and event space that brought attention to the creative potential of dumpsters. The popular intervention, which successfully raised awareness about how the polluted Gowanus waterway could be transformed, recently came to an end, but the popular blue dumpsters will continue to live on as repurposed planters for the Industry City complex in Sunset Park.
The advocacy project got its name from the fact that each blue dumpster can hold 2000 gallons of stormwater. So, if citizens retain stormwater and actively conserve their water use at home, it could help lessen the combined sewage overflow (or CSO, which contaminates the water) and eventually turn the canal back to a healthy blue hue.
Now that the pop-up project has ended, the utility of the big blue dumpsters continues to evolve, this time in another community in transition. Industry City, a Brooklyn-based mega-complex with a bold mission, has acquired the dumpsters and will be reusing them as planters for trees. From Gowanus to Sunset Park, the dumpsters continue to exemplify our city’s commitment to investing in green alternatives.