NEW JERSEY GETS NEW GREEN FLOOD PREVENTION The governor of New Jersey recently announced that the state finalized the plan for its $230 million flood prevention project, launched in the wake of 2012’s Hurricane Sandy, and that it includes less-used green infrastructure practices.

The system will shield the low-lying land around Weehawken Cove and Hoboken waterfront, including NJ Transit’s Hoboken Rail Yard, which was particularly vulnerable to flooding when Sandy hit. Governor Phil Murphy called it “a reasonable, cost-effective system that will protect the city’s residents from flooding from the next major storm.” As expected, the plan calls for the construction of bulkheads, floodwalls and seawalls. More significantly, it also calls for green infrastructure elements.

The new green features include grassy berms—raised areas of land separating two pieces of flat land—that can both keep out floodwaters and function as green community areas during nicer weather. They include bioretention basins, which are shallow depressions landscaped to slow and treat stormwater runoff through natural methods like evapotranspiration from foliage and microbiological breakdown of petroleum pollutants encouraged by mulch. In a similar vein, the plan will include swales, channels filled with biological materials to slow rainwater progress. Continue reading>>