Experts: sea barrier in narrows could prevent surge
The vast destruction wreaked by the storm surge in New York could have been prevented with a sea barrier of the type that protects major cities in Europe, some scientists and engineers say.
“The time has come. The city is finally going to have to face this,” said oceanography professor Malcolm J. Bowman at Long Island’s Stony Brook University. He has warned for years of the potential for a catastrophic storm surge in New York and has advocated for a barrier.
Invited by Bowman and his colleague Douglas Hill, two European engineering firms have drawn up proposals for walling most of New York off from the sea, at a price just above $6 billion.
“With the kind of protection that has been considered so far, you cannot protect a multimillion-inhabitant city that runs part of the world economy,” said Piet Dircke, who has worked on the extensive system of sea barriers in the Netherlands with the Dutch engineering firm Arcadis.