Cuomo to spend $400M to demolish homes damaged by Hurricane Sandy

February 04, 2013 01:00PM

Governor Andrew Cuomo is proposing a purchase program, which will require approval from federal officials, to spend as much as $400 million to purchase homes ruined by Hurricane Sandy, demolish them and have the land preserved permanently as undeveloped coastline, the New York Times reported yesterday. The ambitious plan would pay residents living in the flood plain, with homes that were significantly damaged, the full pre-storm value of their houses to relocate.

The land would never be built on again and some properties could be turned into dunes, wetlands or other natural buffers that would help protect coastal communities from future storms. Other parcels of land could be combined and turned into public parkland.

In the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, Cuomo has said that the state of New York needs to reconsider coastal development and has spoken about the consequences of global climate change, the Times noted.

There are about 10,000 or so homes that were substantially damaged by Hurricane Sandy in New York state, the Times said. Homeowners who chose to relocate within their home county would receive a 5 percent bonus above the pre-storm market value, to encourage people to relocate nearby. [NYT] –Hayley Kaplan