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City leaders, activists say gallons of clean water is wasted in sewer at Tibbetts Brook

Posted: Updated:
KINGSBRIDGE HEIGHTS -

A local water source mixing with the city's sewer system is causing headaches for residents in Kingsbridge Heights.

According to activists, the greenspace at Tibbetts Brook Park could be so much more, but the water source has mostly led to controversy.

"On a dry day like today, 4 to 5 million gallons of clean water is going into the city sewer system to be treated for no reason. On a wet day it can be up to five times that amount," says Christina Taylor, director of programs and operations for Van Cortlandt Park Alliance.

City leaders and organizations want the city to purchase nearby railroad tracks, then use the area to divert the water away from the sewer system.

But CSX, who owns the property, has not accepted the city's offer. 

In a statement, a spokesperson says, "CSX has a long history of working with the City of New York on property transactions that support their long-term goals and allow CSX to focus on its core business. We remain committed to working towards a mutually beneficial outcome."

It is an outcome city Councilman Andrew Cohen says should have already been reached. 

"It really seems to be greed because again there was an agreement between the city or at least a handshake agreement that we were going to hire an independent appraiser and what they said the city was willing to lay, and CSX is willing to sell and then they reneged."

The city Parks Department tells News 12 the area would also provide a pathway for pedestrians and cyclists. 

"It really has impact far beyond the community. It impacts the city sewer system and infrastructure, and if we can't divert this water from the city sewer system will have to pay for more infrastructure to process the water,” says Cohen.

News 12 is told the CSX property in question goes from 240th Street to 230th Street.

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