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Zoning Reform for Coastal Resilience in New York City

The New York City Department of City Planning has released a large set of recommendations for zoning changes designed to help the city's many coastal areas weather the inevitable extreme weather events of climate change and sea level rise.
May 7, 2019, 5am PDT | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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The Rockaway Beach Boardwalk
John Huntington

The New York City Department of City Planning (DCP) recently announced Zoning for Coastal Flood Resiliency, described in a press release as "a set of recommendations to help floodproof buildings in vulnerable neighborhoods against storms and incorporate sea level rise into their design as projected by the New York City Panel on Climate Change."

"Zoning for Coastal Flood Resiliency would expand the area where flood resilient zoning provisions apply, more than doubling the number of buildings that could utilize these provisions. It would accomplish this by allowing buildings in both the city’s 1% annual chance floodplain and 0.2% annual chance floodplain to fully meet or exceed flood-resistant construction standards, even when these standards are not required by FEMA and NYC’s Building Code," according to the press release.

The recommendations are a small step forward for the recommendations, following a public engagement process that briefed 2,500 stakeholders at 138 community events. "Environmental review and the formal public review process are anticipated to start before the end of the year," according to the press release.

The Zoning for Coastal Flood Resiliency recommendations are part of the Department of City Planning’s ongoing "climate resiliency initiatives." A lot more details about the recommendations are included in the press release and on a website set up to explain the recommendations.

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Published on Thursday, May 2, 2019 in NYC Planning
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