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New Report Recommends Regional Coordination, Variety of Coastal Strategies

October 10th, 2013 by

ULI sandy report coverA new report from the Urban Land Institute contains a range of recommendations for steps the Sandy-affected region can take in order to help prepare itself for future weather events.

The report, After Sandy: Advancing Strategies for Long-Term Resilience and Adaptability, was prepared by a ULI Advisory Services Panel, convened for the purpose by the Urban Land Institute Foundation. The panel studied areas of New York City, Long Island and the north Jersey coast.

The panel began with the assumption that the region must acknowledge the reality of sea level rise, and adapt accordingly. The 23 resulting recommendations are grouped under four headings: Land Use and Development; Infrastructure, Technology and Capacity; Finance, Investment and Insurance; and Leadership and Governance. Among the key recommendations:

  • Promote regional coordination. Panelists at a presentation about the report pointed out that disasters don’t respect municipal or state boundaries, or political affiliations, and regional coordination to address regional needs will be the most efficient and effective way to deploy scarce resources.
  • Identify land-use typologies – areas that are particularly vulnerable, areas that can be made less vulnerable and areas that are already safer – and direct investments appropriately. This means growth-related investments should be directed to areas less at risk from severe weather.
  • Account for projected sea level rise when planning long-term investments, especially in infrastructure, so that over-investment in vulnerable areas can be avoided.
  • Find creative ways to finance infrastructure, rebuilding efforts, and strategic retreats from vulnerable areas so that municipalities and property owners don’t suffer undue financial harm.
  • Make all critical information easily available and accessible to all who need to use it for long-term planning and decision-making.

Many of these recommendations run parallel to those included in President Obama’s Hurricane Sandy Rebuilding Task Force report, released in August. The full report is available on the Urban Land Institute website

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