New York: Completed report announced following East Side Coastal Resiliency Project consultant review

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Preliminary design for the amphitheater; via DDC

Posted October 17, 2019

Borough President Gale A. Brewer and Council Member Carlina Rivera announced Thursday the completed report by independent consulting firm Deltares on the East Side Coastal Resiliency Project (ESCR). As 6sqft previously reported, the project was first developed in the wake of Hurricane Sandy and is intended to protect 2.2 miles of Manhattan’s East Side, between East 25th Street and Montgomery Street, from flooding and improve access to waterfront space. According to the city, the ESCR project would protect over 110,000 New Yorkers in the area.

Last January, plans for the project revealed by the city came under fire for not incorporating community feedback and concerns that had previously been raised. The main concerns had involved the idea of using eight feet of landfill as a protection strategy and the fact that the park would have to be closed for more than three years for project to be completed.

The city’s Department of Design and Construction (DDC) presented a new round of designs for the ESCR plan in July. The newer plan called for elevating East River Park by integrating the flood wall at the water’s edge with the bulkhead and esplanade without obstructing views; it would still bury the park under eight to 10 feet of landfill to protect against potential floods and build a new park on top.

Preliminary design for Corlears Hook Bridge Landing; via DDC

In response to concerns from residents about the closure of East River Park during the construction period, the city’s updated design, which was approved by Community Board 3 in June, incorporates community suggestions and alternative recreation options including a new amphitheater and an outdoor fitness area. Also in response to community input, the city’s design includes possible solar lighting along the esplanade, a flyover bridge to connect East 13th and East 15th Streets, two new barbecue areas, a new outdoor fitness center and basketball courts, a new amphitheater, and more trees. The board’s approval is part of the city’s Uniform Land Use Review Procedure (ULURP), which culminates in a City Council vote.