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Sunday, June 29, 2008

The Gowanus

Crossing the Gowanus
Photo by myself, at the Gowanus Canal, in Brooklyn. (Pronounced 'Go-on-us').

There's a lot going on in this industrial location. A couple ramps head on to Manhattan. A scrap metal yard lies along one bank, where cranes load material back and forth. And an enormous bridge lurks overhead, covered with black paper and shiny metal studs.

The only time I hear about the Gowanus is on the traffic report. It's not much of a destination and is still a fringe area, lying between Park Slope and Red Hook.


Pardon the last couple photos, which are lacking in people. It's been uncomfortably humid here in New York, and the last thing Mark and I want to do is walk around, never mind be remotely close to other hot, sweaty people.

Shuffling down the sizzling sidewalk in our flip flops today at high noon, all Mark could say (over and over) was, 'It is craaaazy hot out. Craaaaazy, crazy hot. Yeesh!'

We had no real plans for the day, except go to the hardware store, next to the Gowanus Canal. We bought some shades for the bedroom, which gets bright at 6 am. We spent the rest of the day huddled next to the air conditioner.

Luckily this afternoon the skies opened up and poured down rain. Temperature and humidity lowered to a humane level. You could see the relief on people's faces as they sauntered on the sidewalks afterward.


Related posts: Mission Suspended.


Hilda said...

It does look so very industrial. At least the arch-bridge support is nice and shiny.

Spandrel Studios said...

At first, when I saw your photo, I thought it might be part of the "waterfalls" project, before they turned on the spigot! Have you seen any of them up close, yet?

Very interesting shot, by the way - even with a lack of people!

Fredrik said...

Is there a beach or a place downtown where people can take a dip warm days like this?

Kitty said...

Welcome Hilda
yes, the bridge support is a high contrast to what else is going on.

Hi Spandrel
I saw the waterfalls project from afar, passing on the train. It was big and was located on the East River near what looked like an electric plant. At first I thought it was there to generate electricity.

I'd love to get some photos of them up close. Hopefully it'll cool down and I'll be able to go.

Hi Fredrik
The Gowanus looks polluted. There are public pools everywhere. Here's a public pool out near the East River; there is a man made beach out there as well.

Tammy said...

I hope it cools down there soon for you guys. It's been rainy and blah here.

• Eliane • said...

Should I understand that you do not recommend a walk in that area? I am trying to figure out a walk (or bicycle ride) from Red Hook to other Brooklyn neighborhoods (Brooklyn Heights?). If you have any advise for me, pls wave.

As for the waterfalls, I hear they are much better looking in the evening because they are lit.

ken mac said...

who needs people? We like architecture! :)

Kitty said...

Hi Tammy
It was hot again today but there was another storm, which helped.
Hope it's better where you are!

Hi Elaine
The best way is to go across the Brooklyn Bridge. You'll wind up in Brooklyn Heights. Then you can get over to Red Hook. The Gowanus is less bike friendly, but it's close by.

Here's a bike map of the area. The purple shows bike routes.

Red Hook is an interesting area, with some random cobblestone streets and motley houses. There are gardening stores, community gardens and a lot of development at the waterfront.

Brooklyn Heights is next to Fort Greene, where BAM is located. There's a large West Indian population still there.

Park Slope and Prospect Park are just next to Fort Greene, where you can find the Brooklyn Museum of Art.

Thanks Ken Mac!

• Eliane • said...

Thank Kitty! I think the most practical from me (I live on the UWS) is probably go to Red Hook first (Ikea free water taxi!), then to Brooklyn Heights and the bridge (or not, it's a little complicated to cross to the west side). I discovered Red Hook a few days ago. So far I like it and I'd like to explore!
Oh and, you guessed right btw.

Top Casino Offers said...

Gowanus is lying between Park Slope and Red Hook-a fringe area famous for traffic

Kitty said...

Your welcome, Elaine. I hope the bike tour turns out well. I'd love to read about it.

Hi Top Casino
I'd love to know more about the Gowanus and Red Hook in general. Hell, a whole history of Brooklyn would be interesting.