Green Infrastructure for Coastal Adaptation
Alex Felson Yale F&ES and SOA and UEDLAB; Bryan Kaye, Kristin Schwab, UCONN; Lydia Silvas, Seaside Village; Steve Haldun, City of Bridgeport, Parks Department; Alan Plattus and Andrei Harwell, YUDW
Seaside Village, City of Bridgeport UEDLAB, YUDW, UCONN
Seaside Village is a century-old historic residential area, known as one of the best examples across the country of the Garden City Movement. Constructed on former wetlands on the coast, and built on old industrial fill, the coastal community faces challenges with the anticipated sea level rise and increased storm events. These circumstances are similar to many other low-lying, coastal, lower-income communities. The site experiences chronic flooding -- Hurricane Irene caused hundreds of thousands of dollars of damage in 2011.
Yale's Urban Ecology and Design Lab (UEDLAB) is working with a team to address the vulnerable condition of Seaside Village through the construction of green infrastructure for coastal adaptation. The team proposes increasing the aquatic habitats in coastal areas as a preemptive strategy to expedite the conversion of coastal land towards more resilient green infrastructures. The experiments also establish a means to test for marsh establishment in the future with higher water tables and increasing flood events. The Seaside Village Bioretention Designed Experiment provides a green infrastructure research tool and semi-public parkland for coastal adaptation in a highly urbanized housing development in Bridgeport. A bioretention system was installed in the Fall of 2011 with additional planting of native coastal species completed in 2012. Water quality and community appraisal research are now ongoing.
Additional information about the project and its findings can be found here.
A thing is right when it tends to preserve the integrity, stability and beauty of the biotic community. It is wrong when it tends otherwise.
Aldo Leopold, A Sand County Alamanc