Architect Rahul Shah is proposing to use polluted sewage water from Newton Creek in New York to build a public pool. Newton Creek is near an industrial neighborhood in Brooklyn and is one of the most polluted bodies of water in the state. The Exorcise Pool would use the same water source as the Newton Creek, not the same water, to mitigate and make people aware of the dire quality of their local water.
Currently, storm water and sewage mix together in pipes, resulting in over a billion gallons of waste water being dumped into the river every year. Shah's solution would turn 76,000 cubic feet of the dirty water into 'bioswales.' According the Shah, bioswales are "a series of plantings that can absorb toxins and, kind of the nasties of the water." Low-traffic sidewalks would be replaced be the bioswales, which would then be covered by grates.
Any leftover water would then go to a water treatment plant, where it would be sanitized to the extent that people could swim, shower or even drink it. This public pool idea is Shah's thesis at the Parsons School of Design.