'Zoning for Coastal Flood Resiliency' Wins Planning Commission Approval in NYC

Emergency responses to Hurricane Sandy have turned into long-term lessons in New York City, as the nation's largest city crafts a response to sea-level rise and extreme weather by making changes to the zoning code of coastal areas.

1 minute read

March 19, 2021, 6:00 AM PDT

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell


Climate Resilience Planning

Zoning for Coastal Flood Resiliency / NYC Planning

"The City Planning Commission (CPC) approved citywide zoning rules to protect coastal areas from flooding and sea level rise in a committee vote Wednesday," reports Chava Gourarie.

The new Zoning for Coastal Flood Resiliency (ZCFR) rules, detailed in an October 2020 Planetizen post, "would affect homes and buildings in areas designated as floodplains to ensure that they can withstand storms and other disasters, as well as recover from them quicker," explains Gourarie.

More specifically, according to Gourarie:

The proposed plan would allow existing homeowners and property owners to add resiliency measures, such as moving equipment to higher ground or elevating their structures. The new rules would allow more flexible zoning on new construction, introduce recovery measures that would be triggered by emergencies, expand the area eligible for the new zoning regulations, and restrict the number of new nursing homes built in flood zones.

If approved by the New York City Council, the zoning changes would permanently enshrine zoning changes implemented as an emergency measure after Hurricane Sandy. 

More new coverage, by Mark Hallum, is available from AM New York. A press release from the New York City Department of City Planning includes soundbites on the approval from New York City Planning Commission Chair Marissa Lago.

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