Friday, October 13, 2017

The chronic flooding of Hamilton Beach

Great photo essay at Curbed:

If you’d like to get a good picture of New York City’s struggle against sea level rise, head to Hamilton Beach and stand in the middle of the road.

Every month during the highest tides, the streets of this small Queens community are flooded by the waters of Jamaica Bay. At first, as the saltwater starts to trickle in from Hawtree Creek, the small puddles forming around curbs and storm drains don’t appear to be so bad. But as the tide continues to rise, the roads are quickly submerged.

Soon, tiny fish begin to swim across the concrete, and the water is above your ankles. Then swans start to paddle into empty lots, and the water has reached your calves. Suddenly, the flooding is knee high, and the nearest dry land is much too far away. It is a deeply disconcerting feeling, to be standing in seawater in the middle of a neighborhood.

Yet for those living in Hamilton Beach, and in many other neighborhoods around the city, street floods like this are a regular, everyday occurrence. “This is nothing,” says Ginny Dunker, looking out from her front door at a recent six-and-a-half-foot high tide that had flooded midway up her block. “Come back on a rainy day, and then you will see something.”

Hamilton Beach is just one of several New York City communities that are regularly flooded by high tides. Many of these neighborhoods are clustered around Jamaica Bay, including nearby Broad Channel and Howard Beach, and in each of these areas, saltwater has come up into the streets every month for decades. In recent years, however, residents have reported a dramatic increase in the frequency and volume of these floods.


JQ LLC said...

Although not as devastating as the destruction of the west coast and the U.S. commonwealth nation of Puerto Rico, which were immediate, the continuing sinking of Hamilton Beach, going on since the 80's, has been a gradual victim of the extreme effects of climate change. In retrospect, it can be compared to the canary in the coalmine.

The evidence is right there that the federal dept of the interior had no interest in maintaining the safety of the neighborhoods at Jamaica Bay.

That picture of the lot for sale is the most telling. No wonder the gentrification industrial complex has no interest in developing in this particular waterfront area.

Anonymous said...

LIC in about 40 years.

Anonymous said...

Just move already.

Rob in Manhattan said...

"Pay no attention to that rising's all a Chinese hoax".

-A likely utterance of some trump follower.

Anonymous said...


Go for it libtard, extra 30% off your paycheck for Al Gore and Leonardo DeCaprio.
They need the money for their 10,000 sq feet houses, Hummers and jumbo jets to fly around.
Come on pay up! Talk is cheap, actions man.

JQ LLC said...

"Go for it libtard"

"extra 30% off your paycheck for Al Gore and Leonardo DeCaprio.'

Yawn. take your 30 for the avaricious plutocrats and oligarchs denying the gradual devastation of cities and nations.

I'm done with this trolling shit.

I didn't need Gore or even Leo to persuade my opinion.