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The Bay Park Conveyance Project should go a long way towards improving water quality in our West End bays.
By Fred Golofaro  |  July 13, 2020
A view of the old Bay Park Sewage Treatment Plant dock.

After years of dumping high levels of nitrogen into the Western Bays, a collaborative project between New York State and Nassau County to reduce nitrogen pollution should go a long way to improving the water quality of these valuable waters, restoring the bays’ ecology, and providing improved storm protection.

The Nassau County Department of Public Works, in partnership with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, will host a virtual public meeting on July 15 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. to discuss the Bay Park Conveyance Project. During the virtual public meeting, the Project team will be available to address questions and comments from all interested parties and citizens. After the meeting, the meeting contents will remain available and interested parties will be able to email the project team through the virtual meeting platform until October 15, 2020. For more information on how to access the event, please visit the project website at https://www.bayparkconveyance.org/meetings.

The Western Bays are the waters between the neighborhoods of East Rockaway, Oceanside, Island Park, Baldwin, Rockville Centre, Freeport, and Long Beach Barrier Island. Once a productive fishing area and ecological habitat, the Bays have deteriorated over time due to an abundance of nitrogen in the waters. This has led to limited dissolved oxygen levels for aquatic plants and fish. This innovative Project will convey treated water from the Bay Park Sewage Treatment Plant (STP) located in Nassau County, New York, which currently discharges an average of 50 million gallons per day (MGD) of treated water into Reynolds Channel, to the Cedar Creek Water Pollution Control Plant.

The Bay Park Sewage Treatment Plant and Cedar Creek Water Pollution Control Plant force mains are to be constructed using microtunneling and sliplining. Microtunneling is a process that uses a microtunnel boring machine to construct a tunnel 20 to 60 feet below the surface. Sliplining is the process of installing a smaller pipe inside the larger existing pipe, a method to be used to rehabilitate the existing unused aqueduct pipe under Sunrise Highway. The Bay Park STP Pumping Station Project will maximize the amount of treated water to be conveyed to the Cedar Creek Water Pollution Control Plant for discharge through its existing Ocean Outfall in the Atlantic Ocean. The Cedar Creek Water Pollution Control Plant discharges and diffuses treated water through an 84-inch diameter concrete outfall pipe to 120 diffuser ports located approximately 3 miles offshore in the Atlantic Ocean.

Through these projects in the Western Bays Resiliency Initiative, Nassau County will reduce the nitrogen in the Western Bays, which will restore these vital marshlands that protect these communities from wave action and coastal surge. In addition to increasing the resiliency of areas along the Western Bays to coastal flooding, this project will give the local ecosystem a chance to regenerate, bringing back cleaner, healthier bays for wildlife, shellfish, fish, visitors, and local residents alike.

The Bay Park Conveyance Project is part of the Western Bays Resiliency Initiative, a program by Nassau County to improve water quality and storm protection in the South Shore. Other projects under this initiative include the Long Beach Consolidation Project and the Point Lookout Sewer Feasibility Study. For more information, visit https://www.bayparkconveyance.org/.