Physical Geography and Sciences



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Dylan Putnam and Nicolo Alagna, GES 460: / 529: Environmental Field Methods and Analysis
Faculty Mentor: Professor Elisa Bergslien, Earth Sciences and Science Education

For this project, publicly available surface/subsurface soil sample analyses from different recreational parks throughout Buffalo were looked at to determine the different contaminants within the soil and compare the parks to each other. All parks had been previously exposed to contaminants and comparisons were made between the parks to see which sites were safest, which sites had gotten better, and if any sites had gotten worse. The selected parks that were fit best for comparison were Franczyk Park, Trinidad Park, Boone Park, Diarsenol Co., Kingsley Park, and Houghton Park. These parks were all registered under the Environmental Restoration Program, are all in residential/commercial areas, and all had previous uses. The contaminants of highest concern are those known to have an impact on human health such as arsenic, lead, chromium, and copper. The available data will then be compiled into graphs and compared to historic Redlining Maps created by the agents of the federal government’s Home Owners’ Loan Corporation between 1935 and 1940 in order to determine if there is a relationship between the soil quality of the parks and the classification of the surrounding neighborhoods, with the prediction that the most contaminated parks will be associated with a lower assigned neighborhood ‘quality’ grade.

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Surface/Subsurface Soil Contamination Levels and Past Uses of Recreational Parks in Buffalo, New York
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