City of Long Beach Department of Public Works, Flood Protection Infrastructure along the Northern Waterfront

Posted on July 8, 2015

Client: City of Long Beach Department of Public Works
Project Type: Flood Protection Infrastructure along the Northern Waterfront
Project Cost: Design – approx. $600,000; Construction – estimated $18,000,000

Project Description

D&B Engineers and Architects, P.C. was retained by the City of Long Beach to design and administer the installation of a flood protection barrier along its northern waterfront to protect its critical infrastructure including the City’s water and wastewater treatment facilities. During Superstorm Sandy, Long Beach sustained extensive damage due to severe tidal surges and widespread flooding. In order, to protect vital public services, that were rendered inoperable due to inundation by bay waters, the City proposed the installation of a perimeter flood protection system around its essential utilities. This would include a waterfront bulkhead built to conform to current FEMA flood elevations, a connecting landside barrier wall consisting of a combination of permanent and removable components, as well as an interior drainage system. Elevating the grade of the site, where practical, will be a potential project component.

The project area possesses an array of public and private utilities. Major gas and electrical facilities are situated within the area, which may require elevation and/or relocation. Due to an array of subsurface conduits that enter the area from below the waterway (Reynolds Channel), provisions will be made to identify and protect these facilities during bulkhead installation. In addition, the LIRR waterway trestle connects at this shoreline and the track system bisects the project area. Ensuring that a coordinated protection system is developed will be essential in meeting the project’s goals.

Establishing a bulkhead alignment will need to be accomplished early in the design phase. The current rip-rapped shoreline protects a roadway that contains an extensive system of underground utilities. In addition, due to shoreline irregularities, portions of the land are owned by the Town of Hempstead and Nassau County. Identifying an alignment that protects these utilities yet adheres to New York State Department of Environmental Conservation provisions will require securing easements, transferring of property ownership and continued coordination with regulatory agencies.

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