Needing waterproof boots for Long Wharf today

King Tide on Long Wharf

Kate Adams watched a reporter doing a report during today's king tide on Long Wharf. So what happens when one of the tides coincides with a nor'easter?

Neighborhoods: 

Free tagging: 

Comments

Actually, only one

By on

11:58 am is the only one. The next high tide is at 12:39am.

The tide cycle is slightly more than twelve hours. Sorry.

up
20

What happens?

By on

Thousands if not millions in water damage to housing abutting the harbor.

Does the MBTA have flood doors for the Aquarium stop? Hope they do!

up
18

Hey!

Maybe when kids are floating by Marty Walsh, he'll continue his successful career governing by selfie.

up
12

You mean

By on

The mayor, whose administration has come out with a climate action plan.

How is suburban living, anyway? In the city itself, we are okay with Mayor Walsh.

up
11

Nice try!

To make me out to be some suburban rube unfamiliar with the ways of this fair city and it’s idiotic Mayor.

No, seriously, nice try.

up
12

So you’re a Trump fan now?

By on

It is a framework. I think I can speak confidently and say that Walsh’s plan has a bit more bite than the pledges given in Paris.

up
11

Walsh's plan bites?

We continue to develop and redevelop in the flood plain. It's not clear that building code in these places mitigate damage, Property in Widette Circle recently sold to a developer. It's in the flood plane. A significant portion of Seaport is in the flood plane. You only have to look back to Houston flood to see how building in flood planes is banking on significant damages,

up
11

OK

By on

Did you know that the Building Code is designed for public safety? It's not there to save you from yourself. For the most part, it is a set of minimums owners and contractors are to meet. If one builds in a flood plain (not plane), their insurance company will have its own set of minimums to design and build to. It behooves an owner or developer to design and build to the best they can in the location they choose. If they build to the minimums, that's on them and their insurance company. If they build to sell, it's on the purchaser to pay attention and ask the right questions to help make their own decisions.

While not perfect, the respective governments and agencies who are in the area are continuously working on plans, conferring with many experts and compatriots in similar environments. The plans are continuously improving, even if not visibly to you.

up
11

Moreover

By on

Developers are building in Boston knowing where the locations are and what can happen when waters rise. The new Spaulding building in Charlestown is a prime example of that.

Alas, Anonymous is confusing the work done by Boston to try to keep rising waters from becoming a major issue going forward with Houston's laissez faire view of "build wherever you want and we'll deal with the consequences later."

up
17

The website DisasterSafety

The website DisasterSafety.org has a resource called "Post-Sandy-Building-Codes-IBHS" that addresses questions like "What building codes currently apply and what did they use before Superstorm Sandy?" and " How can destruction caused by Sandy be explained in the context of New York and New Jersey building codes?" and "Q. Since older building codes have not really addressed elevation and flooding issues and newer codes just reference local minimum elevation requirements, what can New York and New Jersey property owners do to reduce coastal property vulnerability to flood and surge damage?" and "Do modern building codes include provisions that reduce wind damage vulnerability?"

Are we mitigating flood risk with building code requirements when we build in flood planes?

Morrissey Boulevard

By on

Flooded this afternoon. Down to 1 wet land northbound and 1 wet lane southbound. This is the new normal.

up
15

I believe that this is where

By on

I believe that this is where the BRA, I forget their new name, has gone to court for the right to put a restaurant. They are out of control.

up
10

Close

By on

The restaurant site is even closer to the harbor, where that kiosk thing is.

up
13

To be fair

closer to the harbor but a foot or two higher? Or is that at grade with the end of the wharf?

up
11

Everyone knows this is a wharf right?

By on

Thieir function is to project out into the harbor at sea level.

Easy with the Reverse Chicken Little Syndrome, please.
I have a feeling the Long Wharf Marriott insurers will continue to insure such as long as it's financially feasible. And mitigate flood threats if necessary.

I also have no doubt that any restaurant put at the end of the wharf would be financially feasible and insurable.
It simply won't be built otherwise.

As a frequent ferry commuter, I'd love to see a small restaurant in that spot that would offer views and a wind break 6-9 months out of the year when the spot is otherwise desolate.

I realize it would take up some of the only open space on the harbor but I think it would be worth it. Emphasis on small and fitting into the spot. With public rest rooms and open but element-protected spaces as part of the deal.

Let's get the development to pay for flood mitigation.

Also, please look at the retractable flood barriers in place in Europe. No reason these can't be implemented here. And the restaurant could be built to be resilient, and protect the Aquarium emergency access at the same time.

We're almost 1/5 of the way into the 21th century. We have the technology.

up
14

Counter proposal

Protected seating area with a spot for a food truck. Seating open anyone vs. just for paying patrons of a private business. Charge some decent rate for the spot as (I think) that would be a prime location in the summer.

up
11

Retractable flood barriers are for rivers

Also, please look at the retractable flood barriers in place in Europe. No reason these can't be implemented here

There are PLENTY of reasons that retractable barriers should not be seriously considered for our area.

Boston Harbor has no defined "entrance" and exists as an indented curve along a flat shoreline.

The "barriers in Europe" are nearly all on rivers - the Thames, the Rhine, etc. They are to exclude surges from destroying things inland. Such an approach would work on the Hudson - the Hudson is actually a fjord with steep shoulders. Even the Venetian Lagoon has a handful of barriers built between very long islands like Lido and the necked down entrance due to it being an ancient flooded river estuary.

Boston would be nearly impossible to protect with such a scheme. Any barrier would need to be 100 miles long in order to not flank into the estuaries and tidal marshes that occur frequently on the coastline - look at a surge map and a topo map. See all the marshes and rivers?? See the lack of suitable end points???? The proposals ignore this reality or their designers simply have no problem with channelling water inland with destructive force in cities and towns that are not Boston.

Unless you want to spend billions and billions on a single small area for a single climate threat that isn't even our most pressing (inland flooding and heat are much more of a concern to us adaptation planners than this), the barrier idea is sexy infrastructure, but nearly useless to us.

up
17

Nice speech

By on

I'm well aware of Boston Harbor's geography. I said nothing about protecting the harbor from future sea level rises. My comments were solely regarding Long Wharf.

I'm quite confident the end of wharf could be elevated. Then add pumps and a product like this:

Self-closing barriers

There are other systems as well.
This could work for for protecting the wharf from king tides and storm surges, not an eventual large sea level rise.

A resilient and elevated building would be part of the solution as well.

up
12

River barriers

By on

Their biggest risks come from their rivers - the big continental rivers that would come out in marsh lands if they didn't make so much land with polders over the last 1,000 years.

The Delta Works is a river barrier - keeps surges out of the River since they would swoosh into the land behind the dykes that way - much the way a barrier up to Winthrop would funnel water into Belle Isle and Rumney Marshes and back behind the wall.

They are now focusing on passive barriers (natural defenses) rather than hard infrastructure for their remaining shorelines. The shorelines have dykes along them, but they are being fortified with natural defenses - places for water to go, places to slow it down.

Boston is more like their marshy shorelines than their river zones. Hard infrastructure isn't as useful there.

up
14