onondaga county

Ryan Delaney / WRVO

A top official at the Environmental Protection Agency was in Syracuse on Monday to highlight the county's work in green infrastructure.

Hitting on Onondaga County's Save the Rain program, EPA Deputy Administrator Bob Perciasepe outlined the agency's updated national green infrastructure strategy.

He noted the city and county's collaboration efforts in installing permeable pavement, rain barrels, green rooftops and rain gardens.

COR Development / QPK Design

New York’s Canal Corporation was 0 for 3 in its efforts to find someone interested in redeveloping Syracuse’s Inner Harbor.

Their last request for proposals, a few years back, garnered zero submissions.

But now, the City of Syracuse is in charge, after stepping up and asking to be put in charge of the project. And today the city made public its ambitious new plan to redevelop the harbor.

Emma Jacobs / WRVO

Reverend Jim Matthews says the streets outside St. Lucy's Church on the west side of Syracuse used to flood with every rainstorm.

"The sewage used to overflow and it was raw sewage and it was a mess," he recalls.

But now that the county has re-paved the church parking lot with porous asphalt, the flooding has stopped.

That improvement came after an epic court battle that resulted in Onondaga County being ordered to clean up its overflowing sewer system, to prevent the Metro sewage treatment plant from overflowing into Onondaga Lake.

And St. Lucy's is just one of 50 "green infrastructure" projects taken on by the county's "Save the Rain" initiative.

Emma Jacobs / WRVO

From 1998 to 2007, Onondaga County added 7,000 new housing units. Housing unit size went up 40 percent.

The county also added 61 miles of road.

From 2001 to 2008,  the county laid 147 miles of water-moving pipes.

But in all that time, the population of Onondaga County - which includes Syracuse - has remained totally flat.

Meaning: less water is actually being delivered, but the cash-strapped county is spending more on the infrastructure to deliver it.

borisvolodnikov / via Flickr

Earlier this week a judge approved a $773 million cleanup deal between the White House and Motors Liquidation Company (otherwise known as “Old GM”). The money will go to restoring toxic properties where former plants once stood. The Inland Fisher Guide plant in Salina, N.Y. is among the properties included in the settlement. There are 89 properties in 14 states total.