The Creek in Long Island City
|Municipality||New York City|
|- left||English Kills, Whale Creek|
|- right||Maspeth Creek, Dutch Kills|
|Source||Grand Avenue and 47th Street|
|- location||2nd Street and 54th Avenue in Long Island City|
|- elevation||0 ft (0 m)|
|Length||3.5 mi (6 km)|
|- average||59.3 cu ft/s (2 m3/s)|
Newtown Creek is a 3.5 mi (6 km) estuary that forms part of the border between the boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens, in New York City, New York, United States. It derives its name from New Town (Nieuwe Stad), which was the name for the Dutch and British settlement in what is now Elmhurst, Queens. Channelization made it one of the most heavily used bodies of water in the Port of New York and New Jersey and thus one of the most polluted industrial sites in America, containing years of discarded toxins, an estimated 30 million US gallons (110,000 m3) of spilled oil, and raw sewage from New York City’s sewer system. Newtown Creek was proposed as a potential Superfund site in September 2009, and received that designation on September 27, 2010.
The creek begins near the intersection of 47th Street and Grand Avenue on the Brooklyn-Queens border at the intersection of the East Branch and English Kills. It empties into the East River at (2nd Street and 54th Avenue in Long Island City) opposite Bellevue Hospital in Manhattan at 26th Street. Its waterfront, and that of its tributaries Dutch Kills, Whale Creek, Maspeth Creek and English Kills, are heavily industrialized.
Because the surrounded neighborhoods are completely sewerized, creek has little natural inflow. Its outgoing flow of 14,000 million US gallons (53,000,000 m3)/year consists of combined sewer overflow, urban runoff, raw domestic sewage, and industrial wastewater. The creek is largely stagnant, one cause in the 15-foot-thick (4.6 m) layer of polluted sludge that has congealed on the creek bed.
Before the nineteenth century urbanization and industrialization of the surrounding neighborhoods, Newtown Creek was a longer and shallower tidal waterway, and wide enough that it contained islands. It drained parts of what are now the neighborhoods of Bushwick, Williamsburg and Greenpoint in Brooklyn; and Maspeth, Ridgewood, Sunnyside and Long Island City in Queens. During the second half of the nineteenth century it became a major industrial waterway, bounded along most of its length by retaining walls, the shipping channel maintained by dredging. The Montauk Branch of the Long Island Rail Road, mainly a freight line, runs along the North bank. A liquid natural gas port is under construction on the South bank, between Kingsland and Greenpoint Avenues, Whale Creek, and the main stream of Newtown Creek. In part to appease Greenpoint neighborhood residents angry at the expansion of the nearby sewage treatment plant, the city of New York built a nature walk alongside Newtown Creek in 2009. 
In 2007, residents of Greenpoint, Brooklyn and the New York State Attorney General's Office filed lawsuits regarding the Greenpoint oil spill, a discharge lasting decades that spilled three times the oil of the Exxon Valdez oil spill. On September 27, 2010, the United States Environmental Protection Agency designated Newtown Creek as a Superfund site, preparing the way for evaluation and environmental remediation of the stream. Environment advocacy groups supported the decision.
Newtown Creek is crossed by the Pulaski Bridge (replacing the Vernon Avenue Bridge in the 1950s), the J. J. Byrne Memorial Bridge also known as the Greenpoint Avenue Bridge, and the Kosciuszko Bridge, which carries the Brooklyn Queens Expressway. Several bridges that cross its tributaries are named for the street that they carry, such as Grand Street Bridge and Metropolitan Avenue Bridge.
See also 
- "Newtown Creek Clean-Up Efforts". The City Concealed. Thirteen (WNET.org). 2008-12-12. Retrieved 2009-06-29.
- "Newtown Creek Superfund Site". U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Retrieved 2010-09-29.
- Navarro, Mireya (2010-09-27). "Newtown Creek Is Declared a Superfund Site". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-09-27.
- "Newtown Creek Alliance". Newtown Creek Alliance. Retrieved 2010-02-21.[dead link]
- Andrew Hurley, "Creating Ecological Wastelands: Oil Pollution in New York City, 1870-1900," Journal of Urban History 20 (May 1994), 340-361.
- Korman, Benjamin (2011-09-01). ""Nature Does Not Knock"". 7STOPS. Retrieved 2011-09-18.
- Walker, Dalton (July 19, 2007). "Exxon Mobil Cleanup Effort Continues on Brooklyn Spill". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-02-21.
- "US adds industrialized NYC creek to Superfund list". Business Week. Associated Press. 2009-09-28. Retrieved 2010-09-28.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Newtown Creek|
- Pictures of the Newtown Creek crossing
- Newtown Creek Alliance
- Greenpoint v. Exxon
- Greenpoint Waterfront Association for Parks and Planning
- Green Brooklyn: Newtown Creek Category
- PBS: P.O.V.'s Borders: The Invisible Creek
- Forgotten New York -- A boat ride down Newtown Creek -- photos and history
- Newtown Creek Tours - An artist's led tour of Newtown Creek[dead link]
- Video: exploring the wasted banks of Newtown Creek
- N.Y. Times: Between Queens and Brooklyn, an Oil Spill’s Legacy