Developers Keep Building in Sandy Flood Zones

Developers Keep Building in Sandy Flood Zones
© RAFT Architects

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Developers keep building in sandy flood zones
© RAFT Architects

Luxurious new buildings are popping up in flood zones all around the city precisely in the spots that Hurricane Sandy hit the hardest. And even vulnerable-seeming areas didn’t see the expected slowdown. From the western edge of Chelsea and swaths of the Hudson Yards complex to the nautical-industrial streets of Red Hook, we’re building up in New York’s environmental weak spots — often the areas that were, long ago, swampland.

Which isn’t to say that developers can’t mitigate these issues through smart engineering. And, eventually, there will be things like the Dry Line, a $335 million proposal to build a two-mile-long, 15-foot-high flood wall running along the Lower East Side, along with some knolls and landscaped parks. Construction of the wall seems to be moving forward — whether fast enough is a question that can only be answered by storms like Joaquin.

In the meantime, real-estate hype can leave us with short memories for disasters …

King & Sullivan Townhouses: Half of a collection of 22 townhouses in Red Hook, average price $2.7 million, sold in less than a week. They’re also in the worst of flood evacuation zones. […]


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