Lower Manhattan Flooding-compressed Photo: Doc Searls/Flickr

In remarks made on August 27th, Mayor de Blasio pledged $100 million to build a new flood protection system for Lower Manhattan. During the announcement, the mayor was joined by Dan Zarrilli, director of the Mayor’s Office of Recovery and Resiliency and local leaders from Lower Manhattan.

Mayor de Blasio has made improving city infrastructure a hallmark of his time in office and this announcement was a timely one. September is National Preparedness Month and this year marks the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. Meanwhile, parts of the city are still recovering from Hurricane Sandy.

Furthermore, a new report by RealtyTrac that assessed the threat of natural disasters to homes across the US found that New York has the most homes in high risk categories of any metro area in the US. The report identified 3.5 million homes as high risk or very high risk in the New York metro area.

Mayor de Blasio’s plan will include protection for Lower Manhattan’s public housing, including the Smith Houses, as well as for residential communities and businesses. The city will have deployable flood walls on reserve to help control storm surges and prevent flooding.

The mayor hopes that this effort shows a good faith commitment to keeping NYC insulated this hurricane season and will help to bring in more federal dollars.

“It’s all a crucial part of a much bigger plan for sustainability and resiliency,” said de Blasio.

De Blasio notes that these funds are part of the city’s larger ONENYC effort, which prioritizes sustainability and resiliency. Climate change has made NYC’s coastlines particularly vulnerable.

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