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Paul Alter, RA, AIA, Principal Architect with SKOLNICK Architecture + Design Partnership, sailor/captain of the 47’ sloop “Signorina” out of Sag Harbor, NY, lighthouse enthusiast, environmentalist and passionate appreciator of islands, the ocean and global sustainability will moderate a presentation/discussion on Sunday, April 3, 2022 about the Living Breakwaters Project which is currently being constructed off the southern coast of Staten Island.  The presentation panel will have senior designer, Tami Banh of SCAPE Landscape Architecture speaking about the design and Matthew Clark, the Baird senior coastal resident engineer in charge of the construction speaking about the challenges of implementation. This event will include visual and narrative presentations and a question / answer period to encourage audience participation.

Living Breakwaters is an innovative coastal green infrastructure project consisting of 2,400 linear feet of near-shore breakwaters—partially submerged structures built of stone and ecologically-enhanced concrete. The breakwaters are designed to reduce the impact of climate-intensified weather events on the low-lying coastal community of Tottenville, which experienced some of the most damaging waves in the region and tragic loss of life during Superstorm Sandy in 2012. Informed by extensive hydrodynamic modeling, the breakwaters are also designed to slow and, eventually, reverse decades of beach erosion along the Tottenville shoreline.

The breakwaters will also be constructed with “reef ridges” and “reef streets” that provide diverse habitat space, with live oyster installation expected to follow construction completion in 2024. Living Breakwaters was initially developed by SCAPE Landscape Architecture for the Rebuild by Design (RBD) Competition, a design competition held by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to seek cutting edge ideas for coastal resilience in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. The project is being implemented by the Governor’s Office of Storm Recovery.

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