The record-setting surges that Hurricane Sandy brought to Battery Park City — a low-lying 92-acre residential community along the Hudson River in Lower Manhattan — spurred an evaluation of the area’s concrete seawall, completed by Urban’s Ports and Waterways experts. Battery Park is particularly vulnerable to flooding: it’s located in one of Manhattan’s prime flood zones and constructed atop excavated material from the Twin Towers and other construction projects.
The evaluation entailed an underwater inspection and topside survey of more than one mile of the seawall. We then developed a seawall maintenance protocol for Battery Park City Authority (BPCA), which considered predicted sea level changes. We also recommended improvements to increase the wall’s resilience. Working with the BPCA’s prime consultant, we helped prepare several reports and consolidate findings into a comprehensive document.
A proprietary building systems management software provided an online platform for collaboration during the team’s field work. BPCA staff now use the software as a tool to track the status of the entire Battery Park City asset inventory. It enables them to quickly prepare accurate budgets and manage the work required to maintain this marquee waterfront site.
More than 10,000 residents enjoy Battery Park’s meticulously cultivated parks and open spaces. Retail development and several large office buildings boost the community’s value. Significant tax and lease revenue from Battery Park have funded affordable housing projects elsewhere in the City. The seawall is one way to protect this infrastructure and sustain its economic benefits.