Resilience in the news

Re-imagining Manhattan

Posted by on Jan 28, 2013

You might have missed this in your holiday busy-ness, as we did: In December, Atlantic Cities reported on a project by a team of architect and planners from the University of Michigan to rethink Manhattan in the light of the clear danger of damage from future versions of Hurricane Sandy: From the edges to the center of the island, the Michigan team’s concept plan alternates marshes, tidal defense berms, floating neighborhoods, hydroponic farms and new parks to protect against flooding. It also retrofits flood plains with a new datum above the water line for service, emergency and power...

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Artificial reefs for tsunami protection

Posted by on Jan 23, 2013

In Sumatra, new methods are under development to protect cities from tsunamis: “It uses the concept of cathode accretion–putting a small electrical charge in the water that draws calcium carbonate (the stuff reefs are made of) out of solution and onto an iron-based skeleton. The calcium slowly accumulates, creating an artificial reef and wave barrier.” And down the road, the same method may be used to create community hubs as places of refuge from tsunami waters.  

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Facing extended drought, Texas policy makers focus on water planning

Posted by on Jan 13, 2013

An article in today’s New York Times paints a surprising picture of bipartisan support for planning in Texas–a state known for neither planning nor bipartisanship. With a two-year drought continuing and being called the third-worst in the state’s history (the worst was in the 1950s), there is interest in tapping the $2 billion rainy day fund to address infrastructure improvements to grapple with water shortages. Currently, according to the article, “As Texas Bakes in a Long Drought, Water Becomes a Focus for Legislators,” there are eighteen public water system in...

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Why the Dutch Can Implement Flood-Control Measures

Posted by on Jan 9, 2013

There’s a fascinating article in today’s online issue of The Atlantic Cities: “We’re In This Together: What the Dutch Know About Flooding That We Don’t. The short article explores why residents of The Netherlands can pull together to put in place flood-control measures, even if they cost a lot of money. In The Netherlands (Holland), a flooding event is nearly universal–nearly everyone is affected by it, so everybody knows that they have to deal with control measures. In the U.S., by contrast, a flood affecting New Orleans or coastal New Jersey won’t...

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Posted by on Jan 6, 2013

RDI Advisory Board member David Orr was quoted recently in the New York Times on the topic of ergonomic seating in school classroooms. While classroom chairs may not represent mainstream resilient design, it’s a good example of the need to rethink how everything is designed in response to the challenges of today and tomorrow. And certainly, the typical school classroom with forward-facing desks and chairs — a concept that dates back centuries — is a ripe one for some innovative...

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Vulnerabilities to Climate Change and the Need For Resilience in the Western U.S.

Posted by on Jan 6, 2013

The January, 2013 issue of Land Lines, a publication of the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, has an excellent article on climate change impacts in the Intermountain West and the need for resilience. “Uncertainty and Risk: Building a Resilient West” addresses drought, growing incidence of wildfire, population growth, and factors that have increased vulnerability. While short on practical strategies for enhancing resilience, the lengthy article provides excellent background information on this eight-state region (Montana, Idaho, Wyoming, Nevada, Utah, Colorado, Arizona, New Mexico)...

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