New York City prepares for sea-level rise with $7B waterfront plan
New York – Facing the threat of sea level rise, the New York City Economic Development Corporation (EDC) is proposing construction of a $5 billion to $7 billion waterfront for lower Manhattan.
New York City sea level rise rendering
Targeting a mile-long section between The Battery and the Brooklyn Bridge, the Financial District and Seaport master plan recommends actions to stem anticipated daily tidal flooding conditions and coastal storm surge in the year 2100. This means a constant level of protection against tidal flooding at about 3.5 feet above the current esplanade and a coastal defense system about 17 feet above the current esplanade to protect against storm surge.
The master plan employs a mix of passive features that are integrated into the landscape and active features that are deployed before a storm. Limited waterfront space could result in parts of the system extending out into the water.
Primary cost drivers include:
- Shoreline fill and cofferdams.
- Whitehall Ferry Terminal reconstruction or partial reconstruction.
- Roadway gates.
- Drainage infrastructure such as pumps and storage.
The EDC plans to seek funding from multiple sources such as federal grants from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Federal Emergency Management Agency, and the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act.
At the state level, financial assistance could come from a consumer insurance surcharge, Environmental Bond Act, and Clean Water State Revolving Fund loans. City general obligation and revenue bonds and other bond sources could supplement the project funding at the local level.