ULI New York Blog

After Sandy: Strategies for Long-Term Resilience & Adaptability

A ULI Advisory Services Panel: July 14-19, 2013

Six months after Hurricane Sandy—the second costliest hurricane in U.S. history—hit the New York/New Jersey region, many plans and strategies are being developed to protect coastal communities from a series of long-term risks associated with climate change. Very strong local and national thought leadership is going into this process and the federal government has pledged an unprecedented amount of support toward reconstruction and forging a new generation of land use best practices. Because the occurrence of climate related disasters is increasing everywhere, more and more municipalities have their eyes on this region.

ULI has a long history and commitment to supporting communities in repositioning after disasters. At the request of three ULI District Councils—New York, Northern New Jersey, and Philadelphia, ULI is deploying an Advisory Services Panel that will focus on helping lay the groundwork for planning for future, unpredictable events in the NY/NJ region, and for developing land use and investment strategies now that will be needed in the aftermath of the next event.

Instead of looking at how best to rebuild following Hurricane Sandy, the interdisciplinary ULI panel will function as “future responders.” They will assess the longer term recommendations that have already been made. The panel will look for key themes and recommendations, and identify where there is consensus, as well as disagreement, and possible gaps in making the region resilient and adaptable to future events.

The panel will also be charged with creating a set of principles to guide future real estate development practices in the region that best ensure resilience and adaptability. The panel’s scope will include land use, infrastructure, buildings of all kinds, and financial structures to best leverage public dollars with private investment. The panelists will represent the broad range of land use, real estate, finance, and public policy professions as well as climate change and sustainability experts, from both local ULI New York and New Jersey membership as well as national and international leadership.

ULI is uniquely positioned to take on this role because of its long-time commitment to advancing land use policies and design practices that respect the uniqueness of both the built and natural environments. ULI’s mission is to provide leadership in the responsible use of land and in creating and sustaining thriving communities worldwide and this situation and others like it are especially suited to ULI’s interdisciplinary perspective.

For more information, email John McIlwain or Annie Finkenbinder Best.

Photo courtesy of FEMA / Andrea Booher

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