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SAUGUS RIVER

MIDDLESEX FELLS RESERVATION PINE RIVER

RUMNEY MARSH RETENTION AND ACCRETION AREA
REVERE

MYSTIC RIVER AMELIA EARHART MYSTIC DAM EVERETT

CHELSEA

FRESH POND

RUTHERFORD AVE DETENTION AND TOD ZONE RE-NEW CHARLES RIVER DAM
BIG DIG

EAST BOSTON

WINTHROP

WATERTOWN DAM

LOGAN AIRPORT FINANCIAL DISTRICT CHARLES RIVER BASIN BACK BAY SOUTH BOSTON WATERFRONT

DEER ISLAND

THE FENS

SOUTH END SOUTH BOSTON

SEAPORT BARRIER AND RESILIENT URBAN DISTRICT
JAMAICA POND

I-93 DIKE AND TOD AT JFK/UMASS
FRANKLIN PARK ARNOLD ARBORETUM SQUANTUM MOON ISLAND

LONG ISLAND

NEPONSET RIVER

QUINCY

10km STRATEGIC FRAMEWORK INTERVENTIONS AREA OF RISK AT 5.5M ABOVE MEAN SEA LEVEL EXISTING PROTECTION AT 3.5M ABOVE MSL PROPOSED HYDROLOGIC DISTRICTS EMERALD NECKLACE (CITY OF BOSTON) RESERVATIONS (MASS DCR) HARBOR BATHYMETRY LAND TOPOGRAPHY

BOSTON, WITH UP TO 2m OF SEA LEVEL RISE DURING A 100-YEAR STORM During the Blizzard of 1978, the not-yet-completed New Charles River Dam came within 40cm of being overtopped. This is likely to occur by the end of the century with current sea level rise projections, and due to the topography of Boston and its built form, extending and increasing the level of protection would require the construction of a harbor barrier.

RUMNEY MYSTIC REVERE

CHARLES

HARBOR BARRIER SOUTH END SOUTH BOSTON

EAST BOSTON

WINTHROP

PROPOSED NEW WALLS RECOMMENDED IMPROVEMENTS PROPOSED CLIMATE PARKS QUINCY EMERALD NECKLACE (CITY) RESERVATIONS (STATE)

POLITICAL JURISDICTIONS VS. HYDROLOGIC DISTRICTS

NEW/IMPROVED SEAWALLS AND CONSTRUCTED BARRIERS

AUGMENTED PARK NETWORK

AMELIA EARHART DAM (1965)

CHARLES RIVER DAM (1910) NEW CHARLES RIVER DAM (1978) INNER HARBOR

WATERTOWN DAM (1900)

OUTER HARBOR (PROPOSED 1988)

PROPOSED RETENTION AREAS POTENTIAL RETENTION AREAS POTENTIAL URBAN DETENTION

PARKWAYS PROPOSED PARKWAYS PROPOSED BIKEWAYS BIKE CONNECTIONS POTENTIAL PARKWAYS HIGHWAYS

STORM SURGE CONTROLS AND LEVELS OF PROTECTION

RESILIENT ECOLOGICAL RETENTION/DETENTION

IMPROVED PHYSICAL CONNECTIONS

SHIFTING GROUND – A REGIONAL STRATEGIC FRAMEWORK While many of metro Boston’s town boundaries follow topographic and hydrologic features, the storm surge threat from climate change induced sea level rise requires the establishment of 10 flood control districts. Strategies developed in Shifting Ground (dark orange) can deployed to other, future sites (light orange).

CHARLES RIVER CONTROL STRUCTURES OPEN WATER WETLANDS

10km

THE CHARLES RIVER AND ITS BASIN – AN ENGINEERED HYDROLOGY Boston’s historic marshes and mudflats have largely been filled with impervious surfaces and all of this land will be vulnerable to storm surge flooding in the next century. Inspired by 10km the US Army Corps innovative 1970s Natural Valley Storage Areas along the upland Charles, Shifting Ground envision strategies that similarly attenuate the effects of sea level rise.

100%

90%

80%

70%

60%

50%

40%

30%

20%

All Others Oprock Boston State Fuel RT Properties USPS Boston Marine Works Belcher New England East Boston Terminal Gillette Fan Pier John Flately Boston Harbor Industrial Gillette Federal Government Economic Development MBTA BRA City of Boston Commonwealth Massport

Total of all Boston Frontage Length

10%

0%

100% All Others 90% UGP-Boston Harbor San Marco-Lincoln WH 80% New England Aquarium Boston Design Center 70% Union Wharf City of Boston 60% Federal Reserve of Boston BRA Federal Government 50% Harbor Towers II Paris Landing 40% Flagship Wharf Harbor Towers I 30% BDC Partnership Economic Development 20% Fan Pier Commonwealth 10% Rowes Wharf Massport

<1.5M / WETLANDS 2.2M / NOR’EASTER 2.8M / CAT2 HURRICANE

3.1 / BLIZZARD OF 1978 >3.5M / LEVEL OF EXISTING PROTECTION

Total of all Boston Parcel Values (FY 2008)

PUBLICLY OWNED PARCELS
0%

(From top) New Charles River Dam, Pleasure Bay Seawall, and Deer Island

EXISTING HEIGHT, OWNERSHIP, AND CONDITIONS OF COASTAL PROTECTION Although much of Boston’s coastline has been hardened against storm action, there are vastly different levels of protection even in short stretches of urbanized coastline. Within Boston alone, from the Inner Harbor mouth back to the river dams, there are over 400 different land owners, with only 53% of the total frontage owned by public agencies.

1.5m

2.0m

2.5m

3.0m

3.5m

4.0m

4.5m

5.0m

5.5m

100,000 sqft Residential 100,000 sqft Commercial 100,000 sqft Industrial Source: FEMA HAZUS and 2000 US Census

POTENTIAL INUNDATION AREAS AND IMPACTS TO LAND USE IN 0.5m INCREMENTS Shifting Ground evaluates the “pressure on the system” and the “work” performed by existing control structures. It is important to note that in using a 5m horizontal resolution Digital Elevation Model, the simulation somewhat overrepresents flooded area and therefore serves as a planning tool.

POPULATION
600 500 in thousands

POPULATION
600 500 in thousands 400 300 200 100 0

400 300 200 100 0 1.5

9

9

2.0 1.5 Unprotected

2.5 2.0

3.0 2.5

3.5 3.0

4.0 3.5

4.5 4.0

5.0 4.5

5.5m above Mean Sea Level 5.0 5.5m above Mean Sea Level

Existing River Dams Existing River DamsHarbor Barrier Unprotected Proposed Improved Boston Seawalls Improved Town Seawalls Expedited Wetland Accretion Wetland Accretion Proposed Harbor Barrier Improved Boston Seawalls Improved Town Seawalls Expedited

7 2 2 2 2 2 2 8 8

7
RESIDENTIAL AREA RESIDENTIAL AREA
250 in million square feet in million square feet 1.5 200 150 100 50 0 250 200 150 100 50 0 2.0 1.5 Unprotected 2.5 2.0 3.0 2.5 3.5 3.0 4.0 3.5 4.5 4.0 5.0 4.5 5.5m above Mean Sea Level 5.0 5.5m above Mean Sea Level

7 1 1 5 3 1 4 4 3 5 5 5

7

1

1

Proposed Harbor Barrier Improved Boston Seawalls Improved Town Seawalls Expedited Existing River Dams Existing River DamsHarbor Barrier Unprotected Proposed Improved Boston Seawalls Improved Town Seawalls Expedited Wetland Accretion Wetland Accretion

1

COMMERCIAL AREA COMMERCIAL AREA

3 3

3

3 3

3
in million square feet

250 in million square feet 1.5 200 150 100 50 0

250 200 150 100 50 0 2.0 1.5 2.5 2.0 3.0 2.5 3.5 3.0 4.0 3.5 4.5 4.0 5.0 4.5 5.5m above Mean Sea Level 5.0 5.5m above Mean Sea Level

4

4

Unprotected

Existing River Dams Existing River DamsHarbor Barrier Proposed Improved Boston Seawalls Improved Town Seawalls Expedited Wetland Accretion Wetland Accretion Proposed Harbor Barrier Improved Boston Seawalls Improved Town Seawalls Expedited Unprotected

TOTAL LAND AREA TOTAL LAND AREA

4

4
in hecatares

12 000 in hecatares 1.5 10 000 8 000 6 000 4 000 2 000 0

12 000 10 000 8 000 6 000 4 000 2 000 0 2.0 1.5 2.5 2.0 3.0 2.5 3.5 3.0 4.0 3.5 4.5 4.0 5.0 4.5 5.5m above Mean Sea Level 5.0 5.5m above Mean Sea Level

6

6

Data Sources:

MassGIS (DEM, Parks, Watersheds, Coastlines); NavTeq Coastlines); NavTeq (Roads); FEMA HAZUS Database (Residential and Commercial); Data Sources: MassGIS (DEM, Parks, Watersheds, (Roads); FEMA HAZUS Database (Residential and Commercial); 2000 US CENSUS (Population CENSUS (Population and Earth Area), Google Earth (Orthophoto). MA State Plane Projection. NAVD 88 Datum. 2000 US and Total Area), Google Total (Orthophoto). MA State Plane Projection. NAVD 88 Datum.

Unprotected

Existing River Dams Existing River DamsHarbor Barrier Unprotected Proposed Improved Boston Seawalls Improved Town Seawalls Expedited Wetland Accretion Wetland Accretion Proposed Harbor Barrier Improved Boston Seawalls Improved Town Seawalls Expedited

10km
AREA OF RISK AT 5.5M ABOVE MSL AT 5.5M ABOVE MSL AREA OF RISK ROADS ROADS

10km

EXISTING PROTECTION AT 3.5MPROTECTION AT 3.5M ABOVE MSL STATE HIGHWAYS EXISTING ABOVE MSL

1 2

1 AMELIA EARHART DAM (MYSTIC) 2 AMELIA EARHART DAM (MYSTIC)PARKS
NEW CHARLES RIVERNEW CHARLES RIVER DAM DAM

PROPOSED HYDROLOGICAL DISTRICTS PROPOSED HYDROLOGICAL DISTRICTS

6 QUINCY 6 QUINCY 7 REVERE AND WINTHROP AND WINTHROP 7 REVERE 4 EXPEDITED ACCRETION EAST BOSTON/LOGAN AIRPORT PARKS 5 EAST BOSTON/LOGAN AIRPORT WETLANDEXPEDITED WETLAND ACCRETION CITY OF BOSTON (EMERALD NECKLACE) CITY OF BOSTON (EMERALD NECKLACE) 8 CHELSEA CREEK8 CHELSEA CREEK 9 RUMNEY MARSH9 RUMNEY MARSH MASS DCR (RESERVATIONS) MASS DCR (RESERVATIONS)
INTERSTATE HIGHWAYS INTERSTATE HIGHWAYS STATE HIGHWAYS IMPROVED BOSTON SEAWALLS BOSTON SEAWALLS IMPROVED

3

IMPROVED PROPOSED HARBOR BARRIER HARBOR BARRIER IMPROVED TOWN SEAWALLS TOWN SEAWALLS PROPOSED

3

4 5

SOUTH BOSTON/SOUTH ENDBOSTON/SOUTH END SOUTH

SEA LEVEL RISE RISK AND STRATEGY IMPACT ANALYSIS Shifting Ground analyzed the metropolitan area for susceptibility to climate change –with up to 2m of sea level rise (a 5.5m above MSL storm surge scenario), the “wedges” would protect 77% of the land area. Aggregated across the hydrologic districts, only 10% of the population, 11% of the residential area, and 3% of the commercial area remain at risk.

CHARLES

Boston, Cambridge, and Somerville

MYSTIC

Somerville, Everett, Medford, Malden, Cambridge, Arlington, and Winchester

Boston, Chelsea, Everett, Somerville, and (Massport)

INNER HARBOR (ALONE)

EAST BOSTON

Boston and (Massport)

SOUTH BOSTON
Boston and Brookline

REVERE

WINTHROP

Winthrop, Boston, and (MWRA)

QUINCY

RUMNEY MARSH/PINE RIVER
Revere, Malden, Everett, and Saugus

LEGEND

Each radar chart band represents 40 units, with the outmost band being 200 units.

Population (in thousands)

Residential Area (in million square feet)

Commercial Area (in million square feet)

Total Land Area (in tens of hectares)

SEA LEVEL RISE RISK AND STRATEGY IMPACT ANALYSIS These hydrologic areas have multiple municipalities and different levels of impact. The radar charts indicate risks at 3.5m in light grey and 5.5m in dark grey, but absolute numbers should be qualified by the vulnerability of population, criticality of infrastructure, and regional economic impact.

SEAPORT BARRIER DURING NOR’EASTER, 2050-2100 A storm surge barrier, similar to the one that protects Europoort in Rotterdam, is proposed between South and East Boston, extending and increasing the current area and level of protection. On its southern end, storm surge resilient urbanism creates a new district of Boston and connects the megastructure back to Fort Independence and the Emerald Necklace.

RETAINED CRANES LIGHT UP CIVIC SPACE IN EVENING

LAND/WATER INTERFACE

STREET GRID AND BLOCK PATTERN

BUILDING FIGURE GROUND

CRUISEPORT RETAINED AND EXPANDED

RESERVE CHANNEL OPENED TO RECREATION WHEN CRUISEPORT NOT USED

CIVIC HARDSCAPE SURFACES

PUBLIC/PRIVATE SOFTSCAPE SURFACES

TREE AND VEGETATION STRUCTURE

STORM SURGE DIKE PARK AND MARKET

ACCESS TO EXISTING 2.5M ABOVE MSL SEA WALL

IMPROVED 4.5M ABOVE MSL WALL

FLOODS AT 5.5M ABOVE MSL PROPOSED FILL TO EXISTING FLOODS AT 4.5M ABOVE MSL FLOODS AT 3.5M ABOVE MSL

HISTORIC FILL FOR CONTAINER PORT

RESILIENT URBANISM’S COASTAL EDGE, URBAN FABRIC, AND RESILIENCY The urban fabric and massing invite exploration from the sea and draw urban activity to the water’s edge. To maximize resiliency of this primarily residential area and minimize cut and fill, the urban area gradually slopes up to the north, with Back Bay’s depressed alley morphology adapted to 21st Century storm water mitigation and surge attenuation.

MARCH 2010 NOR’EASTER

25CM OF RAIN| 0.88M STORM SURGE HIGHEST TIDE 113 MDC HIGHEST BASIN 108.4 MDC 3.5M PROTECTION BLIZZARD OF 1978 12 MAR 13 MAR 14 MAR 15 MAR 16 MAR 17 MAR

BASIN FLOOD BASIN TARGET MSL = 105.6 MDC
0.4M POTENTIAL RISE WITH CLIMATE CHANGE

-2M MSL
FENS FLOODING LOCKS RELEASE PUMPING ACTION

HARBOR ABOVE BASIN PUMPING REQUIRED BASIN ELEVATION

DECEMBER 2010 BLIZZARD

40CM OF SNOW | 1.26M STORM SURGE HIGHEST TIDE 115 MDC
REVERE OCEAN AVE. SCITUATE FLOODING

HARBOR BELOW BASIN TIDAL GATES AVAILABLE

3.5M PROTECTION BLIZZARD OF 1978

BASIN FLOOD BASIN TARGET MSL = 105.6 MDC

-2M MSL

24 DEC

25 DEC

26 DEC

27 DEC

28 DEC

29 DEC

NEW CHARLES RIVER DAM STORM FUNCTION Hurricane Diane (1955) raised the basin’s elevation 1.2m above normal and caused extensive damage to Back Bay, necessitating the 1978 dam’s construction. The present dam serves four important functions - basin elevation control through pumps and sluices (at top), storm surge protection (above), lock navigation, and anadromous fish passage (at right).

-1.5M | MLLW
MARSH MUDFLAT PEDESTRIAN BRIDGES

OM | MSL

FLOOD WALL

RETAINED EXISTING PLAYGROUND

0.5M | BASIN

1.5M | MHHW

3.5 = DAM LEVEL OF PROTECTION 3.2 = 1851 HISTORIC HIGH TIDE 3.1 = BLIZZARD OF 1978 2.8 = CAT2 HURRICANE 1955 DIANE = 2.1 FLOOD STAGE = 1.4 BASIN = 0.7 2.2 = NOR’EASTER 1.5 = MHHW

UNDERGROUND CONNECTION

MSL = 105.6FT MDC DATUM

RINK LAWN CHARLESTOWN BRIDGE CAFE >2.5M | STORM PUMP STATION
NEW CHARLES RIVER DAM -1.5 = MLLW

ZAKIM BRIDGE I-93 TO BIG DIG

FISH PASSAGE

BOSTON VIEWS

0.4M RISE W/CLIMATE

BASIN (CONTROLLED) LOCK (VARIABLE)

HISTORIC STORM LOW/HIGH TIDE

RE-NEW CHARLES RIVER DAM GROUND A reconceived Paul Revere Park adds ecological performance by introducing a tidal mudflat and marsh that extends the fresh/salt water interface, acting as an improved fish ladder. By visualizing the inundation sequence, new opportunities for circulation and program are interspersed, with a waterfront terraced berm offers views of Boston and dam operations.

TO EVERETT

SULLIVAN SQUARE T STATION

BREEDS HILL INDUSTRIAL PARK

HISTORIC CHARLESTOWN

BUNKER HILL COMMUNITY COLLEGE

TO BOSTON

EXISTING PLAN

PLAN OF SULLIVAN SQUARE IMPROVEMENTS

EXISTING SECTIONS

SECTIONS OF RUTHERFORD AVENUE IMPROVEMENTS

SULLIVAN SQUARE AND RUTHERFORD AVENUE DETENTION ZONE AND TOD IMPROVEMENTS This failed 1970s highway project offers the opportunity not only to block runaround storm surge to the Charles Basin, but also to repurpose the trench as a 3.8 acre detention basin. Compatible with preliminary surface traffic plans by Boston and the Cecil Group, this would restore open space and pioneer strategies that could be replicated in the South End.

MALDEN TO LYNN RAIL-TO-TRAIL PATH

US ROUTE 1 SUCCESSIONAL NATURE AREA SEAWALL/ BIKE PATH

EXISTING TIDE GATE

MUDFLATS

VISITORS CENTER

5.5M CONTOUR 3.5M CONTOUR

WETLAND ACCRETION RESEARCH AREA

5.5m 3.5m MHHW MSL MLLW

RUMNEY MARSH WETLAND ACCRETION AREA Attached to another 1970s highway project, the Rumney Marsh visitors center leverages the constructed berm of Route 1 and its failed bypass to raise ecologically the present storm surge barrier. Nestled into a hillside along a berm-top nature trail, regional bicycle/pedestrian access could be provided by a disused rail line between Malden and Lynn.

ESPLANADE AND COMMON BACK BAY

PLEASURE BAY RESILIENT DISTRICT

THE “HUB” EMERALD NECKLACE

CITY OF BOSTON CHARLES RIVER WATERSHED

METROPOLITAN REGION RESERVATION PARK NETWORK

SHIFTING GROUND AT MULTIPLE SCALES Large-scale landscape infrastructure has a storied history in Boston, as does regional governance. The cleanup of Boston Harbor required the cooperation of federal, state, city, and non-profit agencies, and could serve as a precedent for how larger networks and systems might inform Shifting Ground’s eventual implementation.