A hurricane passes directly over New York City. In just one hour, the harbor rises 13 feet and floods over wharves, causing rivers on each side of the island city to converge.
Anyone living in New York would assume this is Hurricane Sandy that devastated the region just a few years ago. It’s actually the Great Hurricane of 1821.
“This is not the first time the region faced a hurricane the size and strength of Sandy and it goes to show that another Hurricane Sandy could occur in the future,” said Bryce Wisemiller, Project Manager, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, New York District.
He said coastal storms like Sandy aren't new, but what is are the stakes. Today we have more development and people living on our coast. We also now face an unpredictable climate change and sea level rise which could further compound coastal flooding.
Wisemiller is project manager on what could possibly be one of the largest U.S. Army Corps of Engineers studies ever undertaken that will look at ways to safeguard communities in the New York and New Jersey Metropolitan region from future hurricanes.
A multi-agency team will work with communities to recommend a combination of risk reduction measures to enable adaptation to an unpredictable future. Those on the team express that what will also be required is an adaptable mindset.
Recently, Wisemiller and two other key Army Corps team members discussed the study and answered questions and concerns the public may have.