On February 9 – 10, 2022, ULI New York and the ULI Urban Resilience Team conducted a workshop for the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) to collect innovative solutions to address cloudburst events for its portfolio, consisting of over 300 developments serving 400,000 low- and moderate-income residents.
Experts in landscape architecture and engineering were gathered to generate strategies for modifying the agency’s open spaces, pathways, streets, parking lots, and buildings, and to complement the rain gardens, bioswales, and permeable pavements that have been installed so far in collaboration with the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). During the workshop, participants toured two NYCHA developments to better understand representative spaces that could be improved for cloudburst management.
The workshop was focused on practical solutions to boost a landscape’s ability to handle extreme rain and cloudbursts. The recomendations focused on three types of approaches: SLOWING down the flow of water, STORING water in floodable areas, or RESTORING natural ecosystems. There was a particular focus on solutions with proven implementation examples from the United States and elsewhere in the world.
The workshop resulted in this reference book of multifunctional cloudburst infrastructure solutions that could be integrated into NYCHA campuses and maximize the co-benefits of stormwater infrastructure for NYCHA residents.