Open Hearth Park at the Former Sydney Tar Ponds

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For nearly a century, the shores along Sydney Harbor bordered one of North America’s largest steel mills and coke ovens, making the steel industry an integral part of the region’s economy and culture. But when the plants closed in 2001, they left tons of industrial waste behind, creating a deep wound that divided three neighborhoods from their waterfront and from each other for nearly 13 years. With the community’s strong economic and emotional ties to the site, the landscape architects led a design effort that closed the divide, healed the environmental scar and boosted the community’s reputation and pride.

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