Working for Smart Growth:
More Livable Places and Open Spaces


Rebuilding After Sandy

The devastation caused by Hurricane Sandy is now forcing an important conversation among stakeholders involved in every aspect of development in diverse areas in New Jersey, about how to focus our shared efforts on rebuilding in a more resilient, sustainable way, so that we can support the full range of lifestyles, livelihoods and recreation opportunities that have made New Jersey unique.

Sandy damage -- resiliencyThe question of where and how to rebuild various areas of New Jersey after Hurricane Sandy is a complex and nuanced one, involving urban density, property values, lifestyles, employment opportunities and significant tourism revenues, weighed against the risk and costs of similar severe weather events in the future. In addition, local development is governed by a dense network of plans and regulations: municipal zoning and master plans; the state’s environmental regulations, including those dedicated to water resources and to guiding coastal development; and the ways in which we’ve directed investments in water, transportation and power infrastructure.

New Jersey Future is currently involved in two significant initiatives as it works with other key stakeholders to identify paths forward to rebuilding a vibrant, resilient New Jersey:

  • Local Recovery Planning Managers: We have placed three local recovery planning managers in seven Sandy-affected communities to bring them the additional capacity they need as they rebuild after the storm. Local recovery planning managers are currently working in Highlands, Sea Bright, Little Egg Harbor, Tuckerton, Downe, Commercial, Maurice River.For each town, we will work toward ensuring a Strategic Recovery Planning Report is created and adopted; a recovery planning and implementation steering committee is established; community vulnerability assessments are institutionalized in its master plan or other vehicle; a robust public outreach/community engagement program is undertaken to engage a wide breadth of residents; Sandy recovery grants are applied for and received; and its FEMA Community Rating System (CRS) score is improved.  
  • State Policy Advocacy: With a variety of partners, we are working to develop a national model for disaster recovery that improves equity, resiliency and sustainability outcomes and that provides a template for other states to use in their disaster-resiliency efforts.Among our desired outcomes: Land use decisions seek to enable people and property to withstand future storms. All levels of government adopt comprehensive risk assessments that consider long-range sea-level rise and other factors. Governments use the risk analyses as a driving factor in their hazard mitigation plans, land use plans, land preservation efforts and capital investment decisions.  Strong land-use planning elements are incorporated into local and regional hazard mitigation plans.


Future Facts
Much of Mystic Island's current center is projected to be inundated by 2050.
State Planning Commission Set To Extend Center Designations; Leaves Coastal Towns at Risk

The State Planning Commission is set to extend center designations another three years, even though this action invites coastal towns to put new development in locations vulnerable to flooding and sea-level rise.

Atlantic City's Steel Pier at sunset. Photo credit: flickr user SurFeRGiRL30
Making Our Coastline Both Resilient and Prosperous

At a recent seminar, experts outlined ways that coastal areas can grow and prosper while enhancing their resilience to future climate threats.

Sandy-related flooding in Little Ferry. Photo credit: Andrew Burton/Getty Images
New Jersey Moves to Final Round in National Disaster Resiliency Competition

New Jersey has reached the final round of the National Disaster Resilience Competition, and has been invited to move forward to the second and final phase.

Photo: Rebuild By Design
The Public Wins a Strengthened Role in Rebuild By Design Projects

Changes to the Rebuild By Design proposals now require stronger public engagement measures, something New Jersey Future recommended.

Kingsbury mockup
College Papers on Key New Jersey Policy Issues Win Statewide Academic Award

Two undergraduate papers that focus on key New Jersey land-use policy issues have won a prestigious statewide award.

Articles and Stories
Sandy aerial view slideshow
What’s Next After Rebuilding? Making Resilience Happen

An afternoon symposium Oct. 30, 2014, in conjunction with the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, focuses on how to advance, and pay for, increased resilience in the wake of Superstorm Sandy. Approved for 2 AICP CM credits.

Mantoloking Sandy
Webinar: Understanding Coastal Vulnerability

A one-hour webinar explaining a new, parcel-based tool that assesses financial vulnerability to coastal flooding and sea-level rise. Friday, May 15, 2015, noon – 1:00 pm.

pier-house-long-branch-01-for website
An Evening at the Shore

A gathering on the anniversary of Superstorm Sandy to connect with others involved in rebuilding the Jersey Shore.

Cover slide for livestream
Sandy One Year Later: Looking to the Future

A conference on the first anniversary of Superstorm Sandy examines the rebuilding progress made to date, and the work still left to do.

New Jersey Future Op-Ed Button
A Grownup’s Christmas Wishlist for New Jersey (from a land-use perspective)

Dec. 15, 2014 — New Jersey Future’s wish list for 2015 — adequate transportation funding; homes that are affordable; updated statewide water supply plan; a new tunnel under the Hudson River; protection from future storms and a new State Development and Redevelopment Plan.

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Reports, Presentations and Testimony

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