Gowanus “Toxic Sludge” Developer Hit With Huge Fines

12.11.12 Andy Cush

Last month, we told you about a plan put forth that would use toxic sludge dredged out of the Gowanus Canal to literally expand the land at Red Hook’s waterfront. Put forth by Brooklyn concrete magnate John Quadrozzi, the plan would designate the new land for–you guessed it–Quadrozzi’s own use.

It looks like that plan may not be going through, however, as Quadrozzi owes the state as much as $20 million in environmental violations for dumping waste in his own backyard: the Gowanus bay. “Since the origin and composition of the material is unknown, it is…possible (not certain) that the material contained chemical constituents that would…not be acceptable in tidal waters,” wrote a Department of Environmental Conservation to DNAinfo, adding, “The environmental consequences may have included… the clouding of waterways and interfering with the habitat of living things that depend on those waters.”

Quadrozzi and his company also wrangled with the DEC over a fence the department says it placed illegally. The company eventually acquiesced, but only after it had racked up tens of thousands of dollars in fines, which multiplied as the fines went unpaid for years.

The EPA, for it’s part, has not mentioned whether Quadrozzi’s slightly shady history will have any impact on whether it pursues his Gowanus Canal plan.

(Photo: Joseph/Flickr)