Brooklyn Boro

Brooklyn projects on the drawing board are geared to climate resiliency

November 23, 2021 Brooklyn Eagle Staff
The Kingsborough Community College lighthouse
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A new pilot program to help ensure new city infrastructure and public facilities are prepared for the worsening impacts of climate change, including intense rainfall and coastal storm surge has been announced this week.

Under this program, 23 city capital agencies will begin designing and constructing dozens of new projects using the NYC Climate Resiliency Design Guidelines, which were developed by the Mayor’s Office of Climate Resiliency (MOCR). These guidelines translate future-looking climate change projections into technical guidance that engineers and architects will use as they design roads, buildings, sewer systems, hospitals, public housing and more.

Forty pilots were selected through a rigorous process that considered climate exposure, equity, and project scope. They range in budget from $3 million up to $1 billion and include a wide diversity of facilities spread across all five boroughs.

The Brooklyn Army Terminal in Sunset Park is slated for a new elevator project. Eagle file photo by Lore Croghan

Brooklyn-based pilots that are part of the program include:

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  • Canarsie Library Overhaul (BPL);
  • Kingsborough Community College Hot-Water Heat Piping Distribution (CUNY);
  • Reconstruction of Paerdegat Pumping Station (DEP) in Flatlands-Canarsie;
  • Owls Head Wastewater Resource Recovery Facility Main Sewage Pump Replacement (DEP) at Owls Head Park, Bay Ridge;
  • Reconstruction of Shore Road Bridge (DOT) over Gerritsen Inlet, Mill Basin; 
  • Brooklyn Army Terminal Elevators (EDC), Sunset Park;
  • Brownsville Community Center (HRA);
  • Gowanus Green, new affordable housing beside the Gowanus Canal (HPD); 
  • Sunset Park Sub-District School Construction in Brooklyn (SCA).

“Climate change is happening now and we have the guide we need to ensure our public infrastructure is protected in New York City,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “Roads, hospitals, public housing, and buildings need to be designed with the impact of extreme weather in mind and the NYC Climate Resiliency Design Guidelines will make sure that happens.”

The planned Gowanus Green affordable housing development adjacent to the Gowanus Canal. Photo courtesy of Marvel Architects

“While the City works to mitigate the impacts of climate change, we must ensure the safety of our residents by adapting our infrastructure to make New York even more resilient,” said Health Commissioner Dr. Dave A. Chokshi. “I thank the Mayor and the Mayor’s Office of Climate Resiliency for their commitment to protecting New Yorkers and building a greener and safer future for all.”

“Climate change is no longer a question – it’s a fact of life and an existential threat to our city,” said DOT Commissioner Hank Gutman. “We’re ensuring that the work we do today will be able to stand up to more extreme weather and changing climate conditions while still being able to serve our city.” 

“Every violent storm that hits our region is another reminder that we must build better, stronger, and for the future,” said President and CEO of the New York Building Congress Carlo A. Scissura. “These new projects are a bold first step in making our buildings and infrastructure more resilient to the effects of climate change. This initiative is crucial because it guarantees that capital projects are all held to the same standards.”

“Protecting public health in a city of 8.8 million residents means it is critical that our drinking water and wastewater systems operate without interruption, 24/7/365,” said Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Vincent Sapienza. “We thank MOCR and Director Bavishi for their leadership and support as we create a more resilient city.”

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