Green infrastructure is real infrastructure that can be combined with, or used in place of, grey infrastructure to provide vital community services, often at lower cost and improved performance as compared with pure grey solutions. We’re glad to have the opportunity to support communities who would like to plan for - and invest in - green infrastructure on a larger scale.
— Rowan Schmidt, Program Director | Earth Economics

(GREEN) INFRASTRUCTURE TODAY,
FOR RESILIENCE TOMORROW

Hunts Point, New York | Fact Sheet

Green Roof | Hunts Point, NY

Green Roof | Hunts Point, NY

The City of New York and the Hunts Point community have an important opportunity to build RESILIENCE and COMMUNITY while conserving precious tax dollars in the process. A long-standing focus on heavily engineered infrastructure for water management, transportation, power, coastal resiliency and other services has left Hunts Point with only scant traces of the rich wetland, shoreline, and forest ecosystems that thrived here historically. Today, though Hunts Point is a vital commerce hub for New York City, community members not only struggle with loss of nature and greenspace, but also many related effects like persistent flooding, air pollution, and noise.

Taking a holistic, community-focused view

Too often project planning by cities and utilities takes a narrow, discipline-specific view of a problem or opportunity e.g. “streets move cars” or “stormwater infrastructure moves water to the river or ocean”. These narrow solutions miss opportunities to provide other benefits, and all-too-often create unintended problems or exacerbate existing ones. Pursuing a more holistic, systems-oriented approach to planning and community resilience helps to identify and implement innovative solutions to long-standing problems. Community members know the most about how shocks (e.g. flooding) and stressors (e.g. poor air quality) affect daily life. Elevating community expertise coupled with bottom-up planning helps design solutions to the most pressing concerns.

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Suggested Citation: Schmidt, R., Chadsey, M., Armistead, C. 2019. Green Infrastructure Today, for Resilience Tomorrow. Earth Economics. Tacoma, Wa.

Prepared for The Point and NYC Environmental Justice Alliance.
Funding provided by the Kresge Foundation.

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