McCarren Park Urban Farms and Green Infrastructure Corridor 2020-01-12T20:46:46+00:00

Project Description

McCarren Park Urban Farms and Green Infrastructure Corridor

Project Lead: GrowNYC
Project Partners: GreenThumb; North Brooklyn Parks Alliance (formerly Open Space Alliance for North Brooklyn); and New York City Department of Parks and Recreation
Project Location: McCarren Park
Total GCEF Funding: $515,275
2015 GCEF Grant: $477,084
2017 Budget Addition: $38,191
Matching Contribution: $472,160
Project Completed: January 2019

In 2015, through a competitive process, GrowNYC received a $477,084 GCEF grant (and provided $472,160 in matching funds) to create an urban farm and green infrastructure corridor in McCarren Park. The farm and corridor includes a rain garden, demonstration urban gardens to support programs about soil health, and a space for community events and environmental education activities for residents, schools, and community groups. Major GCEF-funded activities included installing signs about environmental stewardship and conservation, creating a “best practices” manual with information for Greenpoint residents about the principles and concepts used in the project, conducting community programming on building a garden and using green infrastructure (e.g., rain gardens and rainwater harvesting) in backyards, on roofs, and in community spaces, and educating community residents about environmental sustainability, energy, ecosystems, and safe urban gardening practices.

In 2017, through a competitive process, GrowNYC was awarded an additional $38,191 in funding to install 320 square feet of green roof on 2 shipping containers used for storage inside the McCarren Park Demonstration Garden and a rainwater harvesting system. Additional activities funded by GCEF included installing a model green roof on the ground for easy viewing and education purposes, creating a rainwater harvesting guide with information for Greenpoint residents about the principles and concepts used in the project, and holding rainwater harvesting system related workshops.

GrowNYC continues to maintain an active presence at the site, hosting both community and school garden workshops while also allowing the 3 adjacent co-located middle and high schools to use the growing areas while school is in session.

  • Built the 7,200 square foot McCarren Park Demonstration Garden and 6,170 square foot McCarren Park Green Infrastructure Corridor with signage about environmental stewardship and conservation
  • Installed 2 green roofs totaling 320 square feet, outfitted with educational signage
  • Designed and installed a rainwater harvesting system
  • Diverted over 400,000 gallons of water from the combined sewer system per year (based on an annual rainfall of 47 inches) through its rain gardens and rainwater harvesting
  • Produced and distributed a practical how-to guide for building water harvesting systems in both community gardens and residential contexts
  • Hosted 39 volunteer workdays with over 1000 volunteers
  • Held 12 workshops with over 150 participants on topics including rainwater system building, harvesting, and gardening,
  • Held a beneficial insect workshop for 30 schools in Greenpoint and beyond
  • Hosted a Greenpoint Eco-Schools Teacher Field Trip