The Real Deal New York

City pursues studies of Gowanus, Newtown flood barriers

Plan calls for flood walls, lanes navigable to shipping traffic
June 05, 2014 04:00PM

The city is on the hunt for engineers to study the feasibility of constructing flood barriers along the mouth of the Gowanus Canal and along Newtown Creek. The two areas were spared the worst of Hurricane Sandy’s devastating floodwaters, but lie in low areas vulnerable to the kind of damage suffered in Lower Manhattan. Studies on the sites’ post-hurricane resiliency plans were recommended during former Mayor Bloomberg’s term, and his successor Mayor de Blasio has embraced the ideas as well.

“Storm surge barriers along inland waterways would play a vital role in the city’s resiliency efforts and, in coordination with the ongoing Superfund work, would reduce flood risk in these vulnerable commercial and residential neighborhoods, providing new opportunities to transform the city and make our neighborhoods safer,” Daniel Zarrilli, director of the city’s Office of Recovery and Resiliency, told Capital New York.

The request for proposals asks for tidal barriers navigable to shipping traffic and that would include flood walls along the coast line. Submissions are due in July, and the studies are expected to take two years to complete. [Capital New York]Julie Strickland