As hurricane season approaches, renewed attention is being paid to the Resilient Neighborhoods Initiative, a city planning study proposed in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. City Limits reports that in 2017, plans were made to reinforce the Bronx’s Edgewater Park, Sheepshead Bay, and Canarsie, as well as other waterfront communities deemed especially vulnerable to storms and subsequent flooding.
More than 41% of Edgewater Park’s 675 homes are located in a flood zone. The community was picked as part of the Resilient Neighborhood project because of its uniquely difficult path to reinforcement against storms and flooding. Due to the narrow roads and pre-flood plan regulation houses, which are built with little space between them, elevating the homes would be extremely difficult.
Also, there is little to no buffer between homes and the LI Sound in Edgewater, only concrete pavement and a wooden barrier would serve to protect it from storm surges. Nearly 40%of homeowners in the area are required to buy flood insurance.
Edgewater is a coop community, which means several hoops had to be jumped through for the city to make improvements to bolster the area’s storm-readiness. After several meetings, the coop agreed to drop housing regulations, such as a ban on covered porches, that would allow residents to elevate their homes. Its been slow going so far, though, as only one property in the community has obtained a permit to elevate their home.