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Gowanus is a neighborhood in the New York City borough of Brooklyn. The neighborhood is part of Brooklyn Community Board 6.[citation needed]

The Gowanus area has been an active center of industrial and shipping activity since the 1860s. It is zoned for light to mid-level manufacturing (M1, M2, and M3).[1]

Recently, residential developers have been hindered by the industrial zoning and the problems of the sewage overflow through the canal water, but there have been rumors of rezoning by the New York City Department of City Planning.[2]


In 1636, Gowanus Bay was the site of the first settlement by Dutch farmers in what is now Brooklyn.[3]

Environmental Condition

The water and much of the land along the banks of the Gowanus Canal have been severely polluted from a combination of CSO’s (combined sewer outflows) along the canal designed to relieve sewage and storm water when the sewer treatment plant is overwhelmed as well as from decades of industrial use and extensive coal gas manufacturing during the late 19th century. The Gowanus Canal was also an alleged Mafia dumping ground.[4]


The F, G, and R trains run through Gowanus. Bike routes cross the canal on the Union Street and 3rd Street bridges.[citation needed]

Boerum Hill Cobble Hill Columbia Street Waterfront District Gowanus Park Slope Red Hook Sunset Park Windsor Terrace

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