Session C6

Watershed Resilience: The Rebuild by Design - Living with the Bay Program

Jonathan Carey, AICP, ENV SP, LEED AP; Matt Accardi, & Derrick Rosenbach, AICP

2:00 – 3:30 PM (PT) | 5:00 – 6:30 PM (ET)

About the Presentation

In June 2013, the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) initiated Rebuild By Design (RBD), a competition to respond to Superstorm Sandy's devastation in the northeast region of the United States and promote a design-led approach to pro-active planning for long-term resilience and climate change adaption. The winning proposals would be implemented using Community Development Block Grant-Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) funding as well as other public and private-sector funding sources. In June 2014, following a year-long research and design process during which the design teams met and collaborated with regional experts, government entities, elected officials, issue-based organizations, local community groups, and individuals, HUD announced that the Nassau County Living with the Bay (LWTB) was one of the selected winners. As a result, New York State was allocated $125 million of CDBG-DR program funds to implement the LWTB Program.

The New York State Governor's Office of Storm Recovery (GOSR) is responsible for the direct administration of the CBDG-DR Program. Through extensive public outreach, GOSR developed the LWTB Program to provide a comprehensive suite of thematically consistent and prioritized projects intended to provide long-term resilience and climate change adaptation for Nassau County communities in the Mill River Watershed. The following projects were selected for implementation:

  • Hempstead Lake State Park: Dam repair, restoration and construction of wetlands, construction of an environmental education and resiliency center.
  • Smith Pond: Resiliency interventions, such as habitat restoration, stormwater storage, and improved public access.
  • Lister Park: Ballfield improvements, as well as installation of living shoreline and bank stabilization along the Mill River
  • East Rockaway High School: Installation of green infrastructure and shoreline stabilization
  • East/West Boulevards: Installation of porous, replacement of catchment basins, installation of backflow preventers, and installation of bioswales
  • Long Beach Water Pollution Control Plant: Conversion into a flow diversion pump station and installation of a force main connecting to the Bay Park Sewage Treatment Plant
  • Development of a continuous greenway from Hempstead Lake State Park to Hempstead Bay Because of the variety and geographic separation of the projects proposed by the LWTB Program, GOSR determined that three separate environmental review processes would be permissible to address the series of projects.
This would best inform decision makers and the public of potential environmental impacts presented by the Program, as well as ensure Program-wide impacts and benefits are accurately and completely portrayed while avoiding concerns of segmentation/piecemealing. The panel will cover the LWTB visioning and project selection, the challenges in project planning and selection across multiple jurisdictions, and the approach to environmental review—in particular the cumulative impacts analysis. The panel will explain the Program's long-term benefits to surface and groundwater quality, coastal ecosystems, and the resiliency of the southern shore of Nassau County.

Biology Track, 1.5 AICP Credits

About the Speakers

Jonathan Carey, AICP, ENV SP, LEED AP
Supervising Planner

Jonathan Carey specializes in project planning and approval for storm recovery and resilience projects. He is WSP's client service manager for the New York State Governor's Office of Storm Recovery (NYS GOSR), whose portfolio of projects are funded by HUD CDBG-DR and FEMA HMGP. Jonathan also provides NEPA peer review services to the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJ DEP) for their Rebuild by Design Meadowlands project, which is also funded by HUD CDBG-DR. In addition, he is Planning task lead for the New York City Department of Design and Construction's (NYC DDC) Breezy Point Coastal Resilience Project, funded by HUD CDBG-DR and FEMA HMGP.

Matt Accardi
Assistant General Counsel
New York State Governor's Office of Storm Recovery

Matt serves as in-house counsel and Certifying Environmental Office at the New York State Governor's Office of Storm Recovery where he helps ensure compliance with HUD's NEPA implementing regulations as well as the New York State Environmental Quality Review Act. Prior to joining GOSR in August 2015, Matt worked as an environmental consultant focusing on site remediation before attending Vermont Law School. Matt also teaches an environmental law course for graduate students at the City University of New York's College of Staten Island.

Derrick Rosenbach, AICP
Senior Planner

Derrick William Rosenbach, AICP, manages planning projects for federal agencies, and routinely provides coordination of activities under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), including production and substantive review of environmental assessments and impact statements. Mr. Rosenbach's background includes writing technical analyses concerning natural and cultural resources, public outreach and involvement to ensure stakeholder participation in the planning process, and streamlining environmental compliance documents pursuant to the Council of Environmental Quality's revisions to their implementing regulations.