Rebuild by Design: Learning from Disaster – A Plan for Resilience

25 April 2014 — 25 April 2014

On April 25, a panel discussion is taking place to look back at Rebuild by Design’s process and impact. The ten final design proposals of the design competition to come up with a solution to prevent New York from disasters such as hurricane Sandy, will be exhibited at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York.

The panel discussion (10:30am-12:00pm) will look back at Rebuild by Design’s process and impact. This discussion is taking place at Regional Plan Association’s annual Assembly, which brings together more than 1,000 civic and business leaders to discuss major issues affecting the prosperity and quality of life in the metropolitan region. What did Rebuild by Design teach us about managing current and future risks? How will these lessons inform and shape future planning and design initiatives, including RPA’s next Regional Plan for the New York metropolitan area?  This session also will feature a report being released by the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, Lessons From Sandy, on what changes are needed in federal policy to build a more climate-resilient region.

The session will take place from 10:30-12 pm and will be moderatod by Marilyn J. Taylor, Dean of the School of Design, University of Pennsylvania. Member of the panel will include: The Honorable Bill Finch, (Mayor, City of Bridgeport), Henk Ovink, (Senior Advisor to Secretary Shaun Donovan, Hurricane Sandy Rebuilding Task Force), Robert J. Pirani, (Senior Fellow for Environment & Energy, Regional Plan Association), Kellie Terry-Sepulveda, (Executive Director, The Point Community Development Corporation) and Gena Wirth, (Associate, SCAPE/ Landscape Architecture).

During this day, the ten final design proposals from the interdisciplinary teams participating in Rebuild by Design will be exhibited.

The Dutch are well-represented with input in 6 of the 10 finalist teams. The Interboro team – focusing on the Long Island Coastline was loaded with Dutch expertise (Deltares, IMG Rebel, Palmbout, Bosch Slabbers, TU delft and H+N+S Landscape Architects. HasKoningDHV had partnered with Rem Koolhaas’ OMA to provide a urban waterfront solution for Hoboken, NJ. The Big “U” team – envisioning a protective waterfront around Manhattan that can be developed in many individual pieces over time, led by Bjarke Ingels, was reinforced by Mathijs Bouw and One Architecture and Arcadis. The most ambitious – both in scale as well as timeline – project came from the WXY Team (with Arcadis & West 8) – restoring barrier islands off the coast to protect the region. The New Meadowlands project enjoyed the collective minds of MIT, ZUS, Urbanisten & Deltares and analysed the region through multiple lenses, while building on existing vision plans developed in previous 50 years.

Finally, honorary Dutchman David Waggonner and the Unabridged team (including Arcadis) developed a new future for Bridgeport, CT and a potential blueprint for the future development of coastal communities everywhere. 

The jury deliberations and final announcements are expected in the course of may. The Dutch involvement in the process has been supported by many and the process has been lauded as a new innovative way to bring brilliant minds to the table to think about regional planning in years to come.