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It is projected that sea levels will rise 2 feet by
mid-century and 6 feet by 2100. This new tideline
will transform our c...
sea level rise
explained
Global sea levels have fluctuated for
thousands of years.
Tectonic conditions and climatic cycles...
9000 YEARS AGO 6000 YEARS AGO 3000 YEARS AGO
9,000 YEARS AGO 6,000 YEARS AGO 3,000 YEARS AGO
1630 18521795 1934 TODAY 2050...
CAUSES OF SEA LEVEL RISE
Warming Waters Glacial Melting
Land Subsidence
If all the ice sheets
melted here, sea
levels would rise
ANTARCTICA
89 ft
If all the ice sheets
melted here, sea
levels wo...
GLOBAL SEA LEVELS ARE
PROJECTED TO RISE 1—2 FEET
BY 2050 and 3—6 FEET BY 2100.
THE RESEARCH.
CAUSES AND PROJECTIONS
BOSTON
SOMERVILLE
CHELSEA
WINTHROP
QUINCY
HULL
EVERETT
REVERE
MILTON
CAMBRIDGE
2 ft s...
THE RESEARCH.
CAUSES AND PROJECTIONS
BOSTON
CAMBRIDGE
SOMERVILLE
CHELSEA
WINTHROP
QUINCY
HULL
EVERETT
REVERE
MILTON
6 ft s...
THE PERFECT
STORM
The Boston region is no stranger
to devastating storms.
Although Boston is sheltered geographically
by C...
NORMAL TIDE
STORM SURGE
STORM TIDE
STORM SURGE WILL
INCREASE FLOOD IMPACT
low tide
with sea level risewith storm surge
with storm surge + sea level rise
high tide
astronomical high tide
CHARLES RI...
flooding from a
major storm in 2100
BOSTON
CAMBRIDGE
SOMERVILLE
CHELSEA
WINTHROP
QUINCY
HULL
EVERETT REVERE
MILTON
floodin...
this is Where high tide could be during a storm in 2050
char l es
r i v er
cambridge
boston
b o st o n
har b o r
charlesto...
The Great Northeast Blizzard of 1978
Hurricane Nor’easter
The Great New England Hurricane of 1938
BOSTON HAS A HISTORY OF ...
1885
1954EDNA
1869
1896
1869
1858
1894
1893
1924
1878
1960DONNA
1991BOB
1944
TH
E
G
REAT
ATLAN
TIC
H
UR
1879
1888
1969GERD...
WHAT’S AT
RISK?
Our neighborhoods and cultural
icons are at risk.
Rising water levels and storm surge will hit close
to ho...
Massachusetts
New England
Boston
sea level rise will have a ripple
effect within and beyond boston
Flooding during a
major storm in 2050
Residential parcels
at risk
BOSTON
BROOKLINE
CAMBRIDGE
SOMERVILLE
CHELSEA
WINTHROP
Q...
% residential
land
%
population
total population
& property value
123,620 residents
35,452 residents
4,215 residents
433 r...
industrial, commercial, &
institutional properties at risk
Boston Convention &
Exhibition Center
UMass Boston
MIT
Conley C...
industrial, commercial, &
institutional properties at risk
Boston
%
commercial
land
%
industrial
land
$
assessed
value
Cam...
Ted Williams Tunnel
Sumner Tunnel
North Station
South Station
Back Bay
Station
I-93
Morrisey Boulevard
Major roads
Subway
...
Mass General Hospital
Boston Medical
Center
Conley Container
Terminal
Distrigas LNG Terminal
Logan
Airport Deer Island Was...
TOUGH
QUESTIONS
We need to weigh the costs and benefits
of all our options.
In the face of rising waters and increased sto...
1
Fortify
(Keep Water Out)
2
Adapt
(Live with Water)
3
Retreat
(move to higher ground)
what are the options?
retreat may be necessary for the
most vulnerable areas
CEDAR RAPIDS FLOOD RECOVERY PLAN
POST-SANDY FLOODPLAIN BUYOUT INITI...
what are alternative uses for
flood-prone neighborhoods?
2open space &
recreation
•	 Floodable parks
•	 Cultural amenities...
2
1
3
a storm barrier is
possible in boston
There are three options for a
storm barrier in Boston—each
has its pros and co...
DESIGN
STRATEGIES
We need to design for rising seas
at multiple scales.
From floating apartment buildings to floodable
par...
Living Shoreline Dune Restoration
Multi-Purpose Levee
Elevated BuildingDry Flood-Proofing Wet Flood-Proofing
Temporary Flo...
this is Where high tide could be during a storm in 2050
underground
cistern
living shoreline
Floating
building
living shor...
buildings
How can we build for rising tides?
Boston’s future architecture should build to
a new standard of flood protecti...
Elevated
Building
Dry Flood-
Proofing
Wet Flood-
Proofing
Temporary
Floodwall
Floating
Building
FLOOD SCENARIO
BUILDING A ...
SETTING THE BAR:
Boston, Amsterdam, maasbommel, Brooklyn
Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital Floating Houses, IJburg
Amphibi...
public space
How can we adapt existing open spaces
to accommodate water?
Public space accounts for one third of land in Bo...
Underground
Cistern
Floodable
Park
Absorbent
Street
Canal
Street
MAKING ROOM FOR WATER IN THE CITY public space
SETTING THE BAR:
New Orleans, Rotterdam, SEoul, Portland
Cheonggyecheon Portland Green Streets
©EnvironmentalServices,Port...
How can we adapt Boston’s coast to
rising seas?
Boston’s coast comprises public space, islands,
beaches, backyards, and in...
Living
Shoreline
Storm
Surge
Barrier
Dune
Restoration
Raised
Bulkhead
Multi-
Purpose
Levee
RETHINKING THE BOSTON HARBOR ED...
SETTING THE BAR:
NEW YORK, ASBURY PARK, BALTIMORE
Rebuild by Design, Asbury Park Boardwalk + Dunes
HafenCity NYC Special I...
region
Sea level rise crosses political boundaries
—so should our plan.
Large-scale issues such as sea level rise call for...
Sea level rise CROSSES POLITICAL
BOUNDARIES, SO SHOULD OUR PLAN
REASONS
TO THINK
regionally
Regional impactsEnhanced colla...
FOCUS ON
RESILIENCE IN THE
FACE OF RISING
SEA LEVELS AND
CLIMATE CHANGE
BROAD FOCUS ON
GROWTH, HOUSING,
TRANSPORTATION,
JO...
ENGAGING THE
COMMUNITY
Boston residents talk about sea level rise.
The Sea Change team conducted interviews across
the cit...
“I HAVE BEEN
DOING THIS
MY WHOLE
LIFE. THE
INDUSTRY
HAS NEVER
BEEN MORE
vulnerable.”
FRANK PATANIA
Frank is a lifelong fis...
“WE WERE
HERE DURING
THE BLIZZARD
OF 1978. IT WAS
A MESS.”
SEBASTIAN AND
ROSE DI MARE
Sebastian and Rose are frequent
visi...
“PEOPLE NEED
RESPECT
FOR NATURE
AND THE
EARTH.”
MAURICE RIGAUD
On a sunny day, Maurice came
to the beach with his nephew
J...
academic
partnerships
The next generation of designers
are at the forefront of innovative design thinking.
Partnerships be...
Sasaki Summer Intern Charette
Sasaki’s annual internship charette is a two-week
workshop that focuses on a local issue. In...
BAC Fall Natural Systems Studio
During Fall 2013, the Natural Systems studio at the Boston
Architectural College built upo...
the exhibition
Sea Change: Boston has become a call to
action and a platform for partnerships.
Sea Change: Boston is inten...
the symposium
The symposium fostered a discussion about
the challenges of preparing for sea level rise.
As an extension of...
Design Strategies:
Making Change Visible
		From floating apartment buildings to floodable
parks, designers and engineers a...
Sea Change: Boston, detailed overview
Sea Change: Boston, detailed overview
Sea Change: Boston, detailed overview
Sea Change: Boston, detailed overview
Sea Change: Boston, detailed overview
Sea Change: Boston, detailed overview
Sea Change: Boston, detailed overview
Sea Change: Boston, detailed overview
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Sea Change: Boston, detailed overview

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It is projected that sea levels will rise two feet by mid-century and six feet by 2100. The new tide line will transform the coastal landscape of Greater Boston and increase the probability of a major storm devastating the metropolitan region. Adapted from Sasaki's The Sea Change: Boston exhibition, this overview examines Boston's vulnerabilities to sea level rise and demonstrates proactive design strategies at the building, city, and regional scale. The work is intended to catalyze conversations with a broader audience about the tough questions and regional implications of sea level rise.

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Sea Change: Boston, detailed overview

  1. 1. It is projected that sea levels will rise 2 feet by mid-century and 6 feet by 2100. This new tideline will transform our coast. Sea Change: Boston examines the city’s vulnerabilities to sea level rise and demonstrates design strategies for resilience. Curated by Sasaki Associates in partnership with the Boston Architectural College, the City of Boston, and The Boston Harbor Association, this exhibition has become the framework for a larger conversation regarding planning and design for resilience in the Greater Boston area. *Merriam-Webster Dictionary, 2014 sea change noun ( c. 1612 ) { see • cheynj } :a marked change:transformation*
  2. 2. sea level rise explained Global sea levels have fluctuated for thousands of years. Tectonic conditions and climatic cycles have caused vacilating ocean levels. But because of current climate change, the rate of change has accelerated dramatically. There is general consensus among scientists regarding the projections for global sea level rise; however, glacial melt rates are still largely unknown. If warming global temperatures continue to melt our major glaciers, this will have an additional—and catastrophic—impact on our coastlines beyond current sea level rise projections. Global sea levels are projected to rise 1–2 feet by 2050 and 3–6 feet by 2100. Projections for sea level rise vary regionally due to local geologic conditions. The Northeast is especially vulnerable to sea level rise with observed rates 3-4 times higher than the global average. In addition to the global projections, the warming of the Gulf Stream could add 6–9 inches of sea level rise by 2100. In Boston, sea level rise is already occuring. Over the past century, the relative sea level rise in Boston has been 12 inches. Of that total, 4 inches is due to land subsidence.
  3. 3. 9000 YEARS AGO 6000 YEARS AGO 3000 YEARS AGO 9,000 YEARS AGO 6,000 YEARS AGO 3,000 YEARS AGO 1630 18521795 1934 TODAY 2050 2100 1630 1795 1852 1934 TODAY 2050: 2 FT OF SEA LEVEL RISE 2100: 6 FT OF SEA LEVEL RISE BOSTON HARBOR HAS EVOLVED SINCE THE ICE AGES
  4. 4. CAUSES OF SEA LEVEL RISE Warming Waters Glacial Melting Land Subsidence
  5. 5. If all the ice sheets melted here, sea levels would rise ANTARCTICA 89 ft If all the ice sheets melted here, sea levels would rise GREENLAND 25 ft MELTING ICE SHEETS ARE A LARGE CONTRIBUTOR TO Sea level rise
  6. 6. GLOBAL SEA LEVELS ARE PROJECTED TO RISE 1—2 FEET BY 2050 and 3—6 FEET BY 2100.
  7. 7. THE RESEARCH. CAUSES AND PROJECTIONS BOSTON SOMERVILLE CHELSEA WINTHROP QUINCY HULL EVERETT REVERE MILTON CAMBRIDGE 2 ft sea level rise in 2050 SEA LEVEL RISE PROJECTIONS MapSources:SealevelriseprojectionsfortheregionarebasedoncontoursfromMassachusettsOfficeofGeographic Informationand3DiTechnologies/SpectrumMappingLLCLiDARdataset(2002);SeaLevelRiseprojectionsforBostonare basedoncontoursfromCityofBoston,BostonRedevelopmentAuthority,andSanbornMapCompanyLiDARdataset(2009). north 1 mile
  8. 8. THE RESEARCH. CAUSES AND PROJECTIONS BOSTON CAMBRIDGE SOMERVILLE CHELSEA WINTHROP QUINCY HULL EVERETT REVERE MILTON 6 ft sea level rise in 2100 2 ft sea level rise in 2050 SEA LEVEL RISE PROJECTIONS MapSources:SealevelriseprojectionsfortheregionarebasedoncontoursfromMassachusettsOfficeofGeographic Informationand3DiTechnologies/SpectrumMappingLLCLiDARdataset(2002);SeaLevelRiseprojectionsforBostonare basedoncontoursfromCityofBoston,BostonRedevelopmentAuthority,andSanbornMapCompanyLiDARdataset(2009). north 1 mile
  9. 9. THE PERFECT STORM The Boston region is no stranger to devastating storms. Although Boston is sheltered geographically by Cape Cod and the Harbor Islands, the city has experienced several major hurricanes and Nor’easters. These storms bring severe winds, massive amounts of precipitation, and extreme storm surge which, combined, cause immense damage. Due to rising sea levels and the increased frequency and intensity of storms, Boston is more vulnerable than ever. Storm impacts will be intensified as sea levels rise. Due to climate change, storm events are predicted to occur more frequently and with greater intensity. When storms are coupled with elevated sea levels, impacts will be exacerbated. If a major storm were to hit Boston during high tide, the region could experience impacts similar to those in New York and New Jersey during Hurricane Sandy.
  10. 10. NORMAL TIDE STORM SURGE STORM TIDE STORM SURGE WILL INCREASE FLOOD IMPACT
  11. 11. low tide with sea level risewith storm surge with storm surge + sea level rise high tide astronomical high tide CHARLES RIVER DAM TIDE HEIGHT COULD BE THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A STORM AND A DISASTER
  12. 12. flooding from a major storm in 2100 BOSTON CAMBRIDGE SOMERVILLE CHELSEA WINTHROP QUINCY HULL EVERETT REVERE MILTON flooding from a major storm in 2050 SEA LEVEL RISE + STORM SURGE PROJECTIONS MapSources:SealevelriseprojectionsfortheregionarebasedoncontoursfromMassachusettsOfficeofGeographic Informationand3DiTechnologies/SpectrumMappingLLCLiDARdataset(2002);SeaLevelRiseprojectionsforBostonare basedoncontoursfromCityofBoston,BostonRedevelopmentAuthority,andSanbornMapCompanyLiDARdataset(2009). north 1 mile
  13. 13. this is Where high tide could be during a storm in 2050 char l es r i v er cambridge boston b o st o n har b o r charlestown winthrop quincy SEA LEVEL RISE + STORM SURGE PROJECTIONS Map Sources: Sea level rise projections for the region are based on contours from Massachusetts Office of Geographic Information and 3Di Technologies / Spectrum Mapping LLC LiDAR dataset (2002); Sea Level Rise projections for Boston are based on contours from City of Boston, Boston Redevelopment Authority, and Sanborn Map Company LiDAR dataset (2009). Base image from Google Earth 2014
  14. 14. The Great Northeast Blizzard of 1978 Hurricane Nor’easter The Great New England Hurricane of 1938 BOSTON HAS A HISTORY OF DEVASTATING STORMS “Blizzard of 1978” on Flickr by That Hartford Guy is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 Courtesy of the Boston Public Library, Leslie Jones Collection
  15. 15. 1885 1954EDNA 1869 1896 1869 1858 1894 1893 1924 1878 1960DONNA 1991BOB 1944 TH E G REAT ATLAN TIC H UR 1879 1888 1969GERDA 1938THEGREATNE BOSTON 1940 1950 1960 1970 1980 1990 2000 2010 WINDSPEED 1850 10 30 20 40 50 60 70 80 90 100 1860 1870 1880 1890 1900 1910 1920 1930 SANDY,CAT.3,$68billion IRENE,CAT.3,$15billion BOB,CAT.2,$2.5million GLORIA,CAT.4,$900million DONNA,CAT.5,$500million DIANE,CAT.3,$832million EDNA,CAT.3,$40million CAROL,CAT.3,$460million DOG,CAT.5,$3million GREATATLANTIC,CAT.4,$100million SEPTEMBERGALE,CAT.3,$N/A Historic Hurricane Intensity & Damage in New England Most devastating hurricanes in New EnglandHurricanes hitting New Enlgand GREATHURRICANEOF1938,CAT.5,$306million MapSources:NationalOceanographicandAtmosphericAdministration(NOAA),AtlanticHurricaneDatabase(2013). BOSTON HAS A HISTORY OF DEVASTATING STORMS
  16. 16. WHAT’S AT RISK? Our neighborhoods and cultural icons are at risk. Rising water levels and storm surge will hit close to home, quite literally. Nearly 200,000 residents live in homes at risk of flooding. Entire neighborhoods like East Boston and Back Bay are vulnerable—as are landmarks like Fenway Park. Losing homes, neighborhoods, and cultural assets will threaten our sense of security and our unique identity—and impact tax revenue for the cities of Metropolitan Boston. Sea level rise will have a ripple effect within and beyond Boston. Sea level rise and storm-related flooding in the Boston Metropolitan area will have an impact well beyond the boundaries of the flood zone. A major flood will place many key facilities, infrastructure networks, and economies at risk. The resulting impacts will ripple across multiple scales from the city to the state, and even the entire northeast region.
  17. 17. Massachusetts New England Boston sea level rise will have a ripple effect within and beyond boston
  18. 18. Flooding during a major storm in 2050 Residential parcels at risk BOSTON BROOKLINE CAMBRIDGE SOMERVILLE CHELSEA WINTHROP QUINCY HULL EVERETT REVERE MILTON residential populations at risk MapSources:Parcelsfortheregion:Municipalassessors,various(2013),compiled byMassGIS.ParcelsforBoston:CityofBostonAssessorsOffice(2013). north 1 mile
  19. 19. % residential land % population total population & property value 123,620 residents 35,452 residents 4,215 residents 433 residents 14,035 residents 3,588 residents 5,077 residents Boston 19 % 20 % Cambridge 29 % 34 % Chelsea 41 % 12 % Hull 14 % 4 % Quincy 17 % 15 % Somerville 17 % 5 % Winthrop 48 % 29 % $2.02 billion $2.90 billion $170 million $80 million $1.42 billion $390 million $550 million 20% of boston and 34% of cambridge residents are at risk residential populations at risk
  20. 20. industrial, commercial, & institutional properties at risk Boston Convention & Exhibition Center UMass Boston MIT Conley Container Terminal Mystic Generating Station Black Falcon Terminal Suffolk Downs Industrial Commercial Institutional PARCELS at Risk Flooding during a major storm in 2050 MapSources:Parcelsfortheregion:Municipalassessors,various(2013), compiledbyMassGIS.ParcelsforBoston:CityofBostonAssessorsOffice(2013). BOSTON BROOKLINE CAMBRIDGE SOMERVILLE CHELSEA WINTHROP QUINCY HULL EVERETT REVERE MILTON north 1 mile
  21. 21. industrial, commercial, & institutional properties at risk Boston % commercial land % industrial land $ assessed value Cambridge Chelsea Everett Quincy Somerville Winthrop $4.83 billion $3.41 billion $2.63 billion $860 million $240 million $210 million $420 million $330 million $170 million $70 million Less than $1 million $40 million $540 million $100 million 50 % 72 % 44 % 61 % 81 % 93 % 79 % 87 % 41 % 66 % 49 % 63 % 90 % 52 % $14 billion in property value is at risk
  22. 22. Ted Williams Tunnel Sumner Tunnel North Station South Station Back Bay Station I-93 Morrisey Boulevard Major roads Subway Rail MBTA stations Rail stations Tunnel entrances Transportation at RiskLogan Airport RedLine BlueHillAve.Colum bus Ave. Route 1 OrangeLine OrangeLine Needham Line Fitchburg Line I-90 Lowell Line I-93 I-93 I-93 Newburyport/ RockportLine FairmountLineGreen Line Memorial Dr. Storrow Dr. BlueLine Silver Line Red Line Flooding during a major storm in 2050 transit networks at risk • 11 TUNNEL ENTRANCES • 50 MBTA STATIONS • 7 MAJOR TRAIN STATIONS MapSources:MajorRoads:MassachusettsDepartmentofTransportation(2012),accessedat MassGIS;TrainLinesandStations:CentralTransportationPlanningStaff(2013),accessedat MassGIS. BOSTON BROOKLINE CAMBRIDGE SOMERVILLE CHELSEA WINTHROP QUINCY HULL EVERETT REVERE MILTON north 1 mile
  23. 23. Mass General Hospital Boston Medical Center Conley Container Terminal Distrigas LNG Terminal Logan Airport Deer Island Wastewater Treatment Plant Mystic Generating Station Police station Power plant Sub station Other critical facility Hospital Facilities at Risk Flooding during a major storm in 2050 • 8 POWER PLANTS • 6 FUEL TERMINALS • 9 HOSPITALS MapSources:PoliceStations:MassachusettsEmergencyManagementAgency(2009);Hospitals: MassachusettsDepartmentofPublicHealth(2009);PowerPlants:Municipalassessors,various (2013);CityofBostonAssessorsOffice(2013) BOSTON BROOKLINE CAMBRIDGE SOMERVILLE CHELSEA WINTHROP QUINCY HULL EVERETT REVERE MILTON critical systems at risk north 1 mile
  24. 24. TOUGH QUESTIONS We need to weigh the costs and benefits of all our options. In the face of rising waters and increased storm- related flooding, communities will have to decide what to do with their flood-prone areas. Continually repairing storm damages and providing services to these vulnerable neighborhoods demands significant government resources. For these areas, cities have three major options to consider: keep water out, adapt to live with water, or move to higher ground. Unfortunately, there are no clear answers when it comes to these options—they all have pros and significant cons. Storm barriers can be effective, but at a great cost. To protect the Boston Metropolitan Region from increased storm flooding, one strategy is to construct a storm barrier within Boston Harbor. Storm barriers cannot protect the city from permanent sea level rise, but they can be effective in protecting key areas during a major storm. Unfortunately, storm barriers can be expensive and time intensive, and can have negative impacts on the local ecology. With both significant pros and cons, building a barrier would require a rigorous cost-benefit analysis.
  25. 25. 1 Fortify (Keep Water Out) 2 Adapt (Live with Water) 3 Retreat (move to higher ground) what are the options?
  26. 26. retreat may be necessary for the most vulnerable areas CEDAR RAPIDS FLOOD RECOVERY PLAN POST-SANDY FLOODPLAIN BUYOUT INITIATIVES IN NY & NJ “BuyOutWanted”onFlickrbyMattGreenislicensedunderCCBY-NC-SA2.0©SasakiAssociates
  27. 27. what are alternative uses for flood-prone neighborhoods? 2open space & recreation • Floodable parks • Cultural amenities 3new economic opportunities • Aquaculture • Maritime industry 1ecological function • Increased habitat • Wave attenuation • Pollutant filtration
  28. 28. 2 1 3 a storm barrier is possible in boston There are three options for a storm barrier in Boston—each has its pros and cons. 1 3 Outer Harbor Barrier Potential Cost: $10 Billion Design Components: 11,000 FT barrier + 7,500 FT barrier + ~70,000 FT of shoreline reinforcement Bonus: Roadway connecting North Shore and South Shore Protects: All areas protected in Options 1 and 2 + Quincy + Hingham + Weymouth Inner Harbor Barrier Potential Cost: $2 Billion Design Components: 3,000 FT barrier + ~50,000 FT of shoreline reinforcement Protects: Innovation District, Downtown Boston, Charlestown, East Boston, Chelsea, Everett, Cambridge 2 Harbor Island Barrier Potential Cost: $8 Billion Design Components: 5,000 FT barrier + 3,000 FT barrier + ~60,000 FT of shoreline reinforcement Bonus: Roadway connecting North Shore and South Shore Protects: All from Option 1 + Dorchester + Winthrop to dam or not to dam?
  29. 29. DESIGN STRATEGIES We need to design for rising seas at multiple scales. From floating apartment buildings to floodable parks, designers and engineers around the world are imagining and constructing resilient solutions to rising sea levels. Flexability and adaptability are at the core of resilient design. This thinking will allow our buildings and infrastructure to bounce back from a storm or adjust to rising tides. Boston is home to several examples of resilient design in anticipation of sea level rise, including the Deer Island Waste Water Treatment Plant, Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, and the Boston Architectural College’s “green alley.” But our city and region are still vulnerable. The strategies and case studies exhibited here illustrate an array of tangible solutions for how the Boston region can protect its edge while introducing greater vibrancy, connectivity, and economic opportunities along the water. Layered together, all of these strategies provide more holistic opportunities for protection.
  30. 30. Living Shoreline Dune Restoration Multi-Purpose Levee Elevated BuildingDry Flood-Proofing Wet Flood-Proofing Temporary Floodwall Floating Building Floodable Park Absorbent StreetCanal Street Revetment CATALOG OF DESIGN STRATEGIES Lowest Cost Longest Lifespan Highest Sea Level Rise Effectiveness Highest Storm Surge Protection Shortest Install Time Lowest Cost Longest Lifespan Highest Sea Level Rise Effectiveness Highest Storm Surge Protection Shortest Install Time Lowest Cost Longest Lifespan Highest Sea Level Rise Effectiveness Highest Storm Surge Protection Shortest Install Time Lowest Cost Longest Lifespan Highest Sea Level Rise Effectiveness Highest Storm Surge Protection Shortest Install Time Lowest Cost Longest Lifespan Highest Sea Level Rise Effectiveness Highest Storm Surge Protection Shortest Install Time Lowest Cost Longest Lifespan Highest Sea Level Rise Effectiveness Highest Storm Surge Protection Shortest Install Time Lowest Cost Longest Lifespan Highest Sea Level Rise Effectiveness Highest Storm Surge Protection Shortest Install Time Lowest Cost Longest Lifespan Highest Sea Level Rise Effectiveness Highest Storm Surge Protection Shortest Install Time Lowest Cost Longest Lifespan Highest Sea Level Rise Effectiveness Highest Storm Surge Protection Shortest Install Time Lowest Cost Longest Lifespan Highest Storm Surge Protection Shortest Install Time Lowest Cost Longest Lifespan Highest Sea Level Rise Effectiveness Highest Storm Surge Protection Shortest Install Time Lowest Cost Longest Lifespan Highest Sea Level Rise Effectiveness Highest Storm Surge Protection Shortest Install Time Lowest Cost Longest Lifespan Highest Sea Level Rise Effectiveness Highest Storm Surge Protection Shortest Install Time
  31. 31. this is Where high tide could be during a storm in 2050 underground cistern living shoreline Floating building living shoreline Floodable Park absorbent street storm surge barrier multi-Purpose levee absorbent street dry Flood- Proofing elevated building Wet Flood- Proofing dry Flood- Proofing Floodable Park Floating building raised bulkhead temp Floodwall Floodable Park dune restoration living shoreline Potential location oF Future design strategies Floodable Park char l es r i v er cambridge boston b o st o n har b o r charlestown winthrop quincy We need to design for rising seas at multiple scales
  32. 32. buildings How can we build for rising tides? Boston’s future architecture should build to a new standard of flood protection and flood accommodation. Existing buildings, including historic residences and commercial properties, will need to be retrofitted to keep water out. New buildings will provide the opportunity to take a different approach, built to adapt to changing water levels.
  33. 33. Elevated Building Dry Flood- Proofing Wet Flood- Proofing Temporary Floodwall Floating Building FLOOD SCENARIO BUILDING A NEW STANDARD IN BOSTON BUILDINGS
  34. 34. SETTING THE BAR: Boston, Amsterdam, maasbommel, Brooklyn Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital Floating Houses, IJburg Amphibious Homes Rebuild by Design, Coastal Commercial Resiliency CreatedbyCooper,Robertson&PartnersandDewberryConsultants,LLC. calloutcoloradjustedfromoriginal “maasbommel037”onFlickrbyloesvaneck-verhoevenislicensed underCCBY-SA2.0/saturationandskyadjustedfromoriginal ©LuukKramer|MarliesRohmerArchitectsandPlanners ©AntonGrassl/ESTO|Perkins+Will
  35. 35. public space How can we adapt existing open spaces to accommodate water? Public space accounts for one third of land in Boston. Rather than trying to keep water completely out, the city can leverage this existing space by designing areas that periodically accommodate flooding, stormwater, and high tides. These public spaces can be constructed to be absorbent or to withstand submersion when flooding occurs. In dry or wet conditions, they can serve as desirable amenities to the city.
  36. 36. Underground Cistern Floodable Park Absorbent Street Canal Street MAKING ROOM FOR WATER IN THE CITY public space
  37. 37. SETTING THE BAR: New Orleans, Rotterdam, SEoul, Portland Cheonggyecheon Portland Green Streets ©EnvironmentalServices,Portland,Oregon ©EmilyOrpin Watersquare Benthemplein ©pallesh+azarfane|WatersquareBenthempleinbyDEURBANISTEN Client:CityofRotterdam,theNetherlands The Greater New Orleans Urban Water Plan “NewOrleansFlood”onFlickrbySteveSchaafislicensedunderCCBY-SA2.0
  38. 38. How can we adapt Boston’s coast to rising seas? Boston’s coast comprises public space, islands, beaches, backyards, and industrial facilities. The city has traditionally invested in armoring its coastal edge using bulkheads, seawalls, and revetments, but these inflexible structures make it difficult for Boston to gradually adapt to rising sea levels. Alternative edge conditions like terraced public space, floating neighborhoods, floodable open space, and absorbent parks are more responsive to changing water levels—and provide engaging community amenities. coast
  39. 39. Living Shoreline Storm Surge Barrier Dune Restoration Raised Bulkhead Multi- Purpose Levee RETHINKING THE BOSTON HARBOR EDGE coast
  40. 40. SETTING THE BAR: NEW YORK, ASBURY PARK, BALTIMORE Rebuild by Design, Asbury Park Boardwalk + Dunes HafenCity NYC Special Initiative for Rebuilding and Resiliency (SIRR) Masonville Cove Urban Refuge ©StephaniePeters|MarylandEnvironmentalService ©SasakiAssociates “HurricaneSandyBlackoutNewYorkSkyline”onFlickrbyDavidShankboneis licensedunderCCBY2.0 “Hafencity”onFlickrbyEichentalislicensedunderCCBY-ND2.0
  41. 41. region Sea level rise crosses political boundaries —so should our plan. Large-scale issues such as sea level rise call for regional decision-making. The impacts of sea level rise will be felt beyond Boston and other waterfront cities. Individual actions and city-level plans may not be enough to mitigate the worst effects. Solutions that cross city boundaries may be needed, which will require municipalities and agencies to work together. A regional planning process can be a forum that brings together political leaders, scientists, economists, and the broader public to discuss tough questions.
  42. 42. Sea level rise CROSSES POLITICAL BOUNDARIES, SO SHOULD OUR PLAN REASONS TO THINK regionally Regional impactsEnhanced collaboration and coordination; the whole is more than the sum of the parts Complex issues and long time frames Cost effectiveness Watershed and landscape issues cross city boundaries Bring multiple agencies and cities together Broadened public participation in key decisions region
  43. 43. FOCUS ON RESILIENCE IN THE FACE OF RISING SEA LEVELS AND CLIMATE CHANGE BROAD FOCUS ON GROWTH, HOUSING, TRANSPORTATION, JOBS, AND THE ENVIRONMENT BOSTON’S CURRENT REGIONAL PLAN: 20 year time frameSUSTAINABILITY 75+ YEAR TIME FRAME BASED ON SEA LEVEL RISE PROJECTIONS RESILIENCE ABILITY TO CHANGE BASED ON CONTEMPORARY CONSIDERATIONS DECISIONS MADE DURING PLANNING PROCESS A PLAN THAT ADDRESSES SEA LEVEL RISE SHOULD INCLUDE: THE TIME TO BE PROACTIVE IS NOW what should the next generation of planning look like in the boston region? region
  44. 44. ENGAGING THE COMMUNITY Boston residents talk about sea level rise. The Sea Change team conducted interviews across the city to document the public voice and learn about the public’s awareness of sea level rise. These interviews are documented in a series of photos, videos, and written essays.
  45. 45. “I HAVE BEEN DOING THIS MY WHOLE LIFE. THE INDUSTRY HAS NEVER BEEN MORE vulnerable.” FRANK PATANIA Frank is a lifelong fisherman on Boston’s Fish Pier. The seafood industry has been part of his family for generations. The water defines Frank’s life. Through his years working and living by the coast, he has experienced storm impacts, sea level rise, and fishing regulation that make his industry vulnerable. He understands the importance of our connection to the sea, and hopes for smart development along the coast.
  46. 46. “WE WERE HERE DURING THE BLIZZARD OF 1978. IT WAS A MESS.” SEBASTIAN AND ROSE DI MARE Sebastian and Rose are frequent visitors to the Revere beachfront and lived in the area during the Blizzard of 1978. They view the beach as a vital community resource with historic and cultural value. They have seen the beach change from storm impacts over the years, including a decline in beachfront development and investment. Sebastian and Rose support making the beach more resilient and encourage greater community support for the area.
  47. 47. “PEOPLE NEED RESPECT FOR NATURE AND THE EARTH.” MAURICE RIGAUD On a sunny day, Maurice came to the beach with his nephew Julius to enjoy the good weather. Maurice is a deep thinker with tough questions about our attempts to control nature. He believes in the power of popular consensus to bring about change, but he said too many people are out of touch and unaware. When asked what we can do about our city’s vulnerabilities, Maurice said, “We can’t take care of our roads let alone our beaches.”
  48. 48. academic partnerships The next generation of designers are at the forefront of innovative design thinking. Partnerships between academic institutions and professional design firms have emerged as a productive model for tackling challenging problems. Recently, the topic of resilient design has become a subject of inquiry. With practitioners facilitating academic exercises, the next generation can address these design problems with both pragmatic sensitivity and creative freedom.
  49. 49. Sasaki Summer Intern Charette Sasaki’s annual internship charette is a two-week workshop that focuses on a local issue. In June 2013, as part of the Sea Change research initiative, the interns focused specifically on sea level rise implications and design solutions for South Boston. The group broke into four teams that focused design projects on the diverse economic, demographic, and ecologic impacts of sea level rise. designing for rising seas in south boston
  50. 50. BAC Fall Natural Systems Studio During Fall 2013, the Natural Systems studio at the Boston Architectural College built upon the Sasaki interns’ research and designed resiliency strategies for East Boston. Over the course of the semester, guest critics—including coastal engineers, designers, and Boston Harbor experts—provided insight and expertise. For the final project, the studio was divided into two interdisciplinary design teams. imagining east boston’s future
  51. 51. the exhibition Sea Change: Boston has become a call to action and a platform for partnerships. Sea Change: Boston is intended to catalyze conversations with a broader audience about the tough questions and regional implications of sea level rise. Throughout the process, Sasaki has cultivated partnerships with the Boston Architectural College, the City of Boston, and The Boston Harbor Association. Partnering with District Hall also provided a unique venue to reach a broad audience in the heart of one of Boston’s most vulnerable districts.
  52. 52. the symposium The symposium fostered a discussion about the challenges of preparing for sea level rise. As an extension of the Sea Change: Boston exhibition, the symposium brought together designers, engineers, city leaders, academics, and community members for a day-long conversation about how to make Boston a resilient city in the face of sea level rise.
  53. 53. Design Strategies: Making Change Visible From floating apartment buildings to floodable parks, designers and engineers around the world are imagining and constructing resilient solutions to rising sea levels. This panel explores how resilient design strategies allow Boston’s buildings and infrastructure to bounce back from storms and adjust to rising tides. Tough Questions: Should We Stay or Should We Go? In the face of rising waters and increased storm-related flooding, communities will have to decide what to do with their flood-prone areas. Continually repairing storm damages and providing services to these vulnerable neighborhoods demands significant government resources. This panel examines case studies of flooded communities and delves into the options Boston will have to consider. Thinking Big: The Regional Planning Approach The impacts of sea level rise will be felt beyond Boston and other waterfront cities. Solutions that cross city boundaries may be needed, which will require municipalities and agencies to work together. This panel analyzes how a regional planning process in Boston can be a forum that brings together political leaders, scientists, economists, and the broader public to discuss tough questions related to changing tides. Gina Ford (moderator) SASAKI ASSOCIATES Barbara Wilks W ARCHITECTURE LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE Walter Meyer LOCAL OFFICE LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE Robert Nairn BAIRD ASSOCIATES Hubert Murray PARTNERS HEALTHCARE Julie Wormser (moderator) THE BOSTON HARBOR ASSOCIATION Jason Hellendrung SASAKI ASSOCIATES Kristina Ford COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY Robert Culver SASAKI ASSOCIATES Jerold Kayden HARVARD GRADUATE SCHOOL OF DESIGN Ted Landsmark (moderator) BOSTON ARCHITECTURAL COLLEGE Helen Lochhead SYDNEY HARBOUR FORESHORE AUTHORITY James Miner SASAKI ASSOCIATES Robbin Peach MASSACHUSETTS PORT AUTHORITY Martin Pillsbury METROPOLITAN AREA PLANNING COUNCIL PANELISTS PANELS

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