Rebuild By Design> WXY and West 8’s “Blue Dunes” for New York and New Jersey

City Terrain East Landscape Architecture Sustainability
The Blue Dunes. (Courtesy WXY/West 8)

The Blue Dunes. (Courtesy WXY/West 8)

In early April, the ten finalists in the Rebuild By Design competition unveiled their proposals to protect the Tri-state region from the next Sandy. And in the near future, a jury will select a winner—or winners—to receive federal funding to pursue their plans. But before that final announcement is made, AN is taking a closer look at each of the final ten proposals. Here’s WXY and West 8’s plan for “blue dunes.”

Team WXY and West 8 proposed a regional plan to protect the East Coast with a chain of “blue dunes,” or coastal barriers, that stretch from Cape May, New Jersey to Cape Cod, Massachusetts. They are called “blue dunes” for their “position in the open ocean,”and the “natural landforms they mimic.” These offshore dunes are essentially a way to avoid lining the Eastern Seaboard with 1700-miles of seawalls, which would disconnect coastal communities from the water.  The dunes would mitigate against storm-surge and create new habitats miles from shore.

Aerial rendering of the chain of Dunes. (Courtesy WXY and West 8)

Aerial rendering of the chain of Dunes. (Courtesy WXY and West 8)

“The big question moving forward is how we align our industrial sector to take on these types of interventions regardless of scale,” says Jesse Keenan, the research director at the Center for Urban Real Estate. “That is a huge, industrial mission that’s on par with the space program.”

Team WXY/West 8 includes Dr. Alan Blumberg, Dr. Sergey Vinogradov, Dr. Thomas Herrington, Stevens Institute of Technology; Daniel Hitchings, ARCADIS; Andrew Kao, AIR Worldwide; Kate John-Alder, Rutgers University; Kei Hayashi, BJH Advisors; Maxine Griffith, Griffith Planning & Design; Yeju Choi, NowHere Office; William Morrish, Parsons the New School for Design; Jesse Keenan, CURE.

Aerial view of the plan. (Courtesy WXY and West 8)

Aerial view of the plan. (Courtesy WXY and West 8)

(Courtesy WXY and West 8)

(Courtesy WXY and West 8)

(Courtesy WXY and West 8)

(Courtesy WXY and West 8)

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