Posts Tagged "Structural strength"

Gas Lines Point to a Need for Resilience

Posted by on Nov 2, 2012

By now we’ve all seen the photos of houses buried in sand along the Jersey Shore, burned-out homes in Queens, and submerged subway stations in Manhattan. Those spectacular images were in the first wave of news from Superstorm Sandy this week. The secondary, lingering effects might not be as dramatic, but they are nonetheless very significant. And they demonstrate, ever so clearly, our need for greater resilience. As of yesterday, November 1st, there were still 4.5 million customers without power in New York, New Jersey, and surrounding states, and it appears that many of those outages may...

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Hurricane Sandy and the Case for Resilient Design

Posted by on Oct 31, 2012

While most of us in the Northeast were making last-minute preparations for the massive storm on Monday, I was sitting in Hartford’s Bradley Airport, about to catch one of the last flights out before the airport closed down. Ironically, I was on my way to sunny Florida to give a long-planned keynote presentation on resilient design at the Sustainable Communities Workshop in Sarasota. Despite my pangs of guilt for leaving home and not being there to pull out my chainsaw should the need arise, getting the word out on resilient design remains a top priority for me, and I stuck with my plans. It...

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Resilient design trend? Modern floodgates appear in vulnerable areas.

Posted by on Oct 31, 2012

  Walking along Flat Street in Brattleboro, Vermont this morning before businesses opened, I saw a sign that an important lesson about resilience had been learned over the past year.  The floodgates were up in numerous doorways. Flat Street, as some readers may recall, lies in the floodplain of the Whetstone Brook, which angrily overflowed its banks in August 2011 during Tropical Storm Irene and created havoc for the small businesses, artisans, and restaurants located there.  That event is pictured in a previous RDI post here. No one expected that flood.  Yet, somewhat remarkably, the...

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Sea-level Rise, Storm Surges, and Delaware’s Resilience Challenge (with a Sandy update)

Posted by on Oct 30, 2012

Update Note, October 30, 2012 With Post-tropical Cyclone Sandy still whirling around somewhere to my west, the article below feels prescient.  It wasn’t of course – there was no advance knowledge of this particular storm – but what just happened with Sandy is well in line with climate change trends.  It had been many decades since a hurricane of this magnitude made landfall in or near Delaware, but the conditions were just right, including record-high late-October ocean temperatures in the high 70s (F) to give the storm extra power as it crossed the coastline.  Had Sandy...

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New York City’s (Lack of) Resilience

Posted by on Sep 11, 2012

There’s a great article in today’s New York Times, “New York is Lagging as Seas and Risks Rise.” In a nutshell, with 520 miles of shoreline, New York City is highly vulnerable to rising sea level and storm surges, and the City isn’t doing enough to address its vulnerabilities. The City is already working to expand protective wetlands, install green roofs to limit runoff, encourage property owners to elevate mechanical equipment, and elevate subway ventilation grates (see photo). I was actually involved in the City’s Green Codes Task Force a couple years ago to address such...

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