Urban Landscapes: Exploring New York City's Resilience Initiatives

The history of New York City is a captivating one, and it is documented through decades of planning reports, land use maps, and historic photographs that illustrate a changing urban landscape. The City is devoted to expanding outreach and education initiatives on flood risk and flood insurance to raise awareness and promote the adoption of flood insurance among homeowners, renters, and business owners to support New Yorkers' physical and financial resilience. Guided by climate justice and informed by climate science, New York City prioritizes preparing and protecting the areas, populations, and critical infrastructure most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. The City has partnered with the United States National Park Service and the United States Army Corps of Engineers to improve natural systems by managing and preserving 10,000 acres of wetlands in Jamaica Bay, providing fundamental resilience benefits to coastal storm surges.

The Conservancy is devoted to caring for this essential green space and is proud to offer the people of New York a place of rest and renewal throughout the seasons. The staff of the Public Design Commission participates annually in the planning of PARK Day community participation events with the New York section of the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA-NY). At the turn of the century, New York City was described as an “irregular pincushion of towers”. To address issues of public health and safety, social, racial, and climate justice, Streetscapes for Wellness investigates how innovative public initiatives focused on well-being can inform and inspire the future of New York City's urban landscapes.

The City Statutes have established and modified the city's planning structure over time. Nowadays, developments with towers in parks away from city streets are often seen as isolating and contrary to creating a vibrant urban landscape. The conference explored the possibilities and limitations of zoning as New York City seeks to compete globally, offer economic and social opportunities to all its citizens, ensure a sustainable environment, and improve its public environment. Walker appointed a Planning and Survey Committee to study planning in New York and draft a bill that would create a planning agency.

This includes working with private and non-profit resources; aligning grant eligibility with federal goals of increasing resilience and sustainability in dense urban areas; funding project planning and outreach; supporting heat mitigation projects; encouraging nature-based solutions; wetland projects; improving cost-benefit analyses; better taking into account risk in urban areas; obtaining more benefits from projects in low-income neighborhoods; etc. The findings from this project will serve as a basis for future street redesign projects and will help New York City develop better cost-benefit analyses for heat mitigation projects. The creation of the Urban Planning Commission provided the framework for comprehensive planning in New York City, replacing a disordered system of planning and zoning that worked primarily through the interaction of interest groups and political forces.

Beatrice Flesher
Beatrice Flesher

Professional web geek. Passionate food scholar. Subtly charming twitter practitioner. Amateur travel junkie. Certified beer junkie. Hardcore foodaholic.

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