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  • Writer's pictureMariela Bravo

Building Community Resilience Workshop


collaboration with Manuel Bermúdez Arquitecto csp

Young Architect Conference 2019 Sunday, August 25, 2019 | 4:00 PM - 5:30 PM

The Building Community Resilience Workshop executed during the Young Architect Conference presented two distinct community profiles: (A) Rockaway, NYC, New York presented by ORLI+ and (B) Ocean Park, San Juan, Puerto Rico presented by Manuel Bermúdez Arquitecto csp.

Both communities are affected by similar climatological events: hurricanes and coastal erosion, both currently severly aggravated by climate change.

"The Northern and Southern Caribbean:" Both zones affected by the Gulf Stream Current and Tropical Cyclones.

(A) Rockaway, NYC


The Rockaways or the Rockaway peninsula comprises a series of neighborhoods in southeastern Queens. The peninsula is located in between two bodies of water, Jamaica Bay and the Atlantic Ocean, and also shares a border with Nassau County‘s Five Towns area (see Map 1, inset). The Rockaway peninsula also forms a part of the Long Island island chain often referred to as the “outer barrier” that separates the bays (Jamaica Bay, Brosewere Bay, Hewlett Bay, Middle Bay, Merrick Bay, Baldwin Bay, Bannister Bay, East Bay, Merrick Bay, South Oyster Bay and the Great South Bay) south of Long Island from the Atlantic Ocean. The Rockaways encompass approximately seven square miles, stretching roughly 11 miles in length with an average width of less than three-quarters of a mile.

EVENT: Superstorm Sandy (October 2012)

The Rockaway Peninsula was inundated by Hurricane Sandy, a disaster that exposed the fault lines of race and class that run through the peninsula.

(B) Ocean Park, San Juan, Puerto Rico


Ocean Park is a sub neighborhood of the Santurce neighborhood of San Juan County, the capital of Puerto Rico. It is bordered to the north by the Atlantic Ocean. Ocean Park is bound on the east by Calle Guerrero Noble and its straight extension to the beach, a short piece of Calle Cacique running east to connect to Calle Teniente Rivera, and the connecting piece of Calle Soldado Cruz to Calle Loíza. The southern border runs up to Calle Loíza, but excluding same. In the west, it is Calle María Mozco (northern part) and Calle Santa Ana. The north is bordered by the beach and the Atlantic Ocean. Right through the centre runs Avenida McLeary where cafes, pubs and some services line the street.

EVENT: Hurricane Maria (September 2017)

Hurricane María’s main impact to Ocean Park was that since the emergency backup generators for the storm sewer system were not functioning properly, the whole system collapsed. This caused severe flooding (at least 3’-0” high flooding or more in some areas) and contamination in Ocean Park. The water stayed there for at least two weeks after Hurricane María.

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