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The swimming pool that wants to clean up the river in New York - Walla! Of money


In New York, a pool is currently being built that will purify the polluted river water that flows through the city and allow residents to swim in it. When can we also swim in the Yarkon or Nahal Alexander again?

  • Of money

The swimming pool that wants to clean up the river in New York

In New York, a pool is currently being built that will purify the polluted river water that flows through the city and allow residents to swim in it.

When can we also swim in the Yarkon or Nahal Alexander again?


  • New York

  • Infection

Amnon Director, Angle

Friday, 23 July 2021, 00:12

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Pool + Pool (Photo: Friends of +)

The article was prepared by Zvit - the news agency of the Israeli Association of Ecology and Environmental Sciences

on hot days like these, there is no doubt that bathing in the sea, springs or streams is a particularly preferred and tempting pastime. In Israel, this is an option we usually take for granted, and all we have to do is choose between the Mediterranean Sea and the Red Sea or the Dead Sea, between the Sea of ​​Galilee and the Jordan or the spring near the house. However, from time to time we hear in the news about such and other pollution incidents on beaches and streams, and access to some of the country's streams is regularly prohibited. Even outside of Israel, in many of the famous rivers where some of the largest cities in the world boast, bathing is constantly dangerous.

An example of this is New York, without a doubt one of the largest and most important cities in the world, which stretches along the East River and Hudson rivers - access to which is strictly forbidden.

However, after years of bureaucratic procrastination and licensing issues, a unique venture has recently been approved for the construction of a public and ecological pool on the East River, which will be the world’s first purifying pool.

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Bathing in the East River ceased to be available to the public as early as the middle of the 20th century due to water pollution, caused mainly by industrial activity in the area and low-level municipal sewage, which is also joined by polluted surface runoff when it rains in the area.

In the 1990s, regulations were enacted that led to a certain reduction in the level of pollution in the river, but even today it is impossible to imagine swimming in it.

The new venture is called + Pool, as part of which a plus-shaped pool is planned to be built in the part of the East River between Brooklyn and Manhattan.

Beyond the main use of the pool as a public attraction for the whole family, it is claimed by the developers to filter through various filter layers from which its walls will be built the river water that will fill it with chemical pollutants and pathogenic bacteria, and return them clean to the river.

According to the plan, the pool will filter about 2,270 cubic meters of river water daily.

Pool + Pool (Photo: Friends of +)

A pool that will star on social media

"Eight years ago I had an enlightenment: I realized that New York is actually a peninsula surrounded by water, and that the river is not only the border between Manhattan and Brooklyn - but also an amazing natural resource, currently very polluted," says architect Dong-ping Wong, a senior partner in the project.

"New York is an amazing place to live, you can do almost anything here - but not swim in the river. This water actually defines the city, but we do not use it - on the contrary, we treat it badly."

The river water will be filtered with the help of an innovative patent, which includes filtration units made of geotextile sheets, a synthetic fabric that allows water to seep through it and is widely used for the purpose of separating, draining and filtering liquids.

The river water will be absorbed in the filtration tanks that will be found in the pool wall, where particles that include bacteria and other pollutants will be filtered out.

The filtered water will be used for swimming in the pool, and then settled to the river.

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According to the simulations, the appearance of the pool is expected to be spectacular: it will include two arms that will cross each other in a plus shape, which will be located in the heart of the river and connected to the mainland with the help of a small bridge.

It is possible to predict that this photogenic pool, when it becomes a reality, will star on social media.

Last year, before the venture was approved and as part of its public relations campaign, a light installation was placed on the river that simulated the shape of the pool.

Inside the installation, sensors were installed that measured the level of pollution of the water in real time, which was displayed with the help of LED lights arranged in a plus shape.

The bulbs changed colors according to the level of water pollution, along the range between the blue color, which symbolized clean water, and the red, which symbolized polluted water.

At the same time, the data was also broadcast on a dedicated website.

Pool + Pool (Photo: Friends of +)

Stop the flow of pollutants

It should be noted, however, that the installation of light and the project itself, which was approved for execution, do not purport to make a change in the condition of the river. The size of the pool, and hence its filtering ability, will not be able to affect the water quality of the river on the order of the East River, which stretches for 26 kilometers (except for a very local effect near the pool). In order for a large river to indeed undergo a thorough cleaning process, a lot of resources need to be invested - and above all, it is necessary to stop the discharge of waste, sewage or effluents of any kind into it.

According to Dr. Adi Levy, Scientific Director of the Israeli Association of Ecology and Environmental Sciences and Head of the Division of Environmental and Sustainability at Achva Academic College, The sheets that are to carry out the filtration, what is the mechanism that will allow the removal of the waste that will accumulate on the outer sheets, how the linkage population will be treated - algae and other creatures that will settle on the outer sheets of the pool and more. There may required tests were conducted - but the technical information in respect of which has not been published. "

However, the new venture could be, if and when the universe, an effect explained importantly, would allow raising awareness about water pollution in the East River and major rivers around the world. The pool in New York is an enterprise My experience, and the intention of the architects and engineers who partner with him to build "Pools Plus" laterIn other large rivers in major cities in the United States.

When they were swimming in the Alexander River

"The situation in the river effluents along the Mediterranean coast is not good, and there is a high concentration of fertilizers and bacteria in them."

And what is the situation in Israel? In terms of days and days, all 155 official bathing beaches throughout Israel are allowed for bathing. According to the latest annual report published by the Ministry of Health on the quality of seawater in bathing beaches, more than 96 percent of the inspections conducted on beaches announced in the 2019 bathing season found that the beaches meet the quality requirements set in the Israeli seawater standard. Relatively speaking, in 2019 there was a significant increase in the number of days the public was warned about pollution at sea, which stood at 487 days (compared to 133 days in 2018).

And what about the streams? Of fertilizers and bacteria, "says Prof. Barak Herut, director of the Institute for the Study of Seas and Lakes in Israel. "In some river estuaries, bathing is dangerous, in addition to the ecological aspects. 50 years ago, people used to swim in the Alexander River, for example, but today it is impossible because effluent (partially purified sewage) flows into it.A.D.) ".

Herut is not optimistic about the future of Israeli streams. "In recent years we have seen an increase in sewage flow from the Gaza Strip," he says. "Beyond that, one of the main factors threatening water quality, especially in the estuaries of Mediterranean beaches, is the massive increase in the country's population, which could lead to an increase in the amount of effluent and a greater load on infrastructure." Such a load can cause malfunctions and the collapse of the infrastructure, which can lead to the discharge of raw or partially treated sewage into the sea and thus to the creation of pollution and damage to water quality.

However, according to Herut, there are also reasons for optimism.

"In the case of the Kishon River, for example, the level of pollution in the river has dropped drastically compared to previous decades," he says.

"To improve the condition of water sources, it is necessary to take a variety of practical measures, which include complete cessation of pollution, creating a significant storage volume in sewage treatment facilities that will prevent effluent or raw sewage into streams in case of excess or malfunctions, drainage of mud at the bottom of the streams, avoidance Absolute from the discharge of effluents and the release of natural water sources so that they will be able to return and flow in the streams, "Levy adds.

Will the trend of improving the quality of river and coastal water continue?

Will one day we see a plus-shaped pool in the middle of the Yarkon?

time will tell.

In the meantime, one can draw inspiration from the pool that is planned to be built in the East River, and imagine that in the future we will be able to swim again in the streams near the house.

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Source: walla

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