Public aerial filming from Manhattan, New York on August 6, 2021, beginning construction of the Flood Wall in the Southeast (AFP / Ed JONES)
New York, an urban giant surrounded by water and threatened by climate change, is defending itself behind a massive flood-resistant wall in hopes of averting the catastrophes of the past ten years.
Hurricane Sandy in 2012 and Hurricane Ida and Henry this summer killed tens of thousands of people and damaged billions of dollars in the largest city in the United States. Due to its specific geography, the “big apple” is very vulnerable to bad weather and in recent years has adopted the so-called “climate recession” Titanic project at a cost of $ 20 billion.
Experts fear the water level could rise by 20 to 75 cm by 2050, making New York at risk of drowning, especially as Manhattan Island, the Atlantic Ocean, the East River and the Hudson River are built up.
In total, Megalopolis, with a population of over 8.5 million, has 836 km of coastline.
– $ 1.45 billion project –
In southeastern Manhattan, work has begun on a $ 1.45 billion wall and ditch to prevent flooding.
On the site between East River and the expressway that runs along it, New York City Director of Design and Construction Tom Foley told AFP that he also plans to raise a home park in “this” estuary. To about 110,000 New Yorkers.
Details of the East Coast Recession Project (ESCR) between 25th Street and Montgomery Street in South Manhattan (AFP /)
Over four kilometers, the green space will be raised three meters across and a flood-resistant wall will be erected to prevent catastrophic damage from recent hurricanes and storms forming over the Atlantic.
Ahmed Ibrahim, work supervisor, shows on the site the installation of “towers that serve as deep foundations” and “metal walls that create an underground partition wall to protect us from flooding”.
– Electric shock Sandy –
Sarah Nielsen, the park’s planning director, recalls that New York officials’ awareness began after Hurricane Sandy killed at least 44 people in October 2012, causing $ 19 billion in damage and weeks of power outages. New York City.
General view of the floodwaters construction site in Manhattan, southeastern New York, December 12, 2021 (AFP / Ed JONES)
In this densely populated area of southeastern Manhattan, the water level rises to 2.7 meters above sea level.
To Sarah Nielsen, after Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans in 2005, “Sandy was the first disaster to accelerate our approach to climate change.” Today the expert is pleased that the city, with its sometimes dilapidated infrastructure, has “the most important plans to protect the people of New York.”
The city is “investing more than $ 20 billion (in a multi-year plan) + climate resilience + with a multi-level strategy to protect our coast,” said Jane Bavishi, director of the New York Mayor’s Office. AFP for “Climate Recession”.
– Green Lungs –
General view of the floodwaters construction site in Manhattan, southeastern New York, December 11, 2021 (AFP / Ed JONES)
Not a city surrounded by trees – except for Central Park’s giant green lungs – Manhattan is re-planting thousands of different types of trees around the construction site, improving underground systems for sewers, sewage disposal and construction. ‘Electricity.
City planners in one of New York’s Achilles heels want to improve living space, especially due to the number of basement apartments exposed to flooding and the poor quality of construction and thermal and sound insulation homes.
“There are over a million buildings in New York. We modernize them wherever we can,” says Jaini Pavishi, “one of the most flexible building codes in the world.”
Aerial picture of Manhattan as New York City Island begins construction of floodwaters on August 6, 2021. (AFP / Ed Jones)
Still, not everyone liked the flood wall project. Local residents’ associations are fighting it out in court, and the site should not be completed until 2026.
Terry, who lives in the neighborhood who refuses to give his family name, admits it’s a good idea ‘but regrets that “things are slowly progressing”.
According to Jaini Bavishi, New York and its “climate recession” plan may be part of the environmental component of President Joe Biden’s $ 1.2 trillion plan, which was voted in Congress to invest heavily in infrastructure in the United States.
af-nr / arb / ube / mlb