January 11, 2012

Why Can’t Con Edison afford sandbags?

 To the editor:
Re. A tide of concern is rising risk of storm surges (Downtown Express news article, January 4):

Hurricane Irene hit Manhattan on August 28, 2011, and with the exception of some residents experiencing phone outages for a few days, this time we got away with little damage. John Ost, who serves on the Board of Directors at Southbridge Towers with me , walked by the Con Edison Peck Slip substation and saw that there were no sandbags or preparation to shield the building from water damage.  As this building provides

Southbridge and the Seaport area with electricity, is there any reason why Con Edison didn’t shore up the building, or did they think the structure is waterproof??? The water surge from the storm came up, under the Franklin D. Roosevelt drive.  It could have easily traveled another 25 feet to the Con Edison building.

As the article by Terese Loeb Kreuzer explains, “hurricanes of Categories 1,2 and 3 will strike the NY region on an average of every 17, 39 and 68 years, respectively.”

She also points out that sea gates have been built in London, Rotterdam an are being built in Venice to protect those cities. Those cities have and are taking action.

If we don’t insist on the construction of storm surge barriers for NYC harbor, 16 years from now, Downtown Manhattan could easily be sunk.
Robin Warshay

Thumbs up for Pier 15

To the editor: 
Re. Pier 15’s new look wows visitors (Downtown Express news article, January 4):

I was pleased to see your article about Pier 15 in the current issue. I work across the street, so it is in essence our new “front yard.”  One thing your article did not capture, however, was the pier’s uniqueness. It is stunning. As are the views. The design is masterful minimalism — a combination of brushed chrome railings and stained decking, a totally appropriate blend of the industrialism of the elevated highway, and the traditionalism of the nearby ships. There are numerous places to sit, including tables, biomorphic “pods” and benches built into the elevations of the rising rampways.  I strongly recommend getting there before the tourists do! Some of this charm may be dissipated with crowds.  It is particularly lovely in the late afternoon, as the sun imparts a golden glow to the ship’s masts and Brooklyn skyline.
 David W. Lowden

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