Anchor provides electricity information and communication to city residents after disasters or emergencies, by adding solar-powered local mesh wireless networks to street lights. Unlike LinkNYC, Anchor is built on existing infrastructure and is flood proof.
As part of my thesis research, I wanted to look into natural disasters that had occurred in the past 10 years. FEMA has extensive data, that goes back to 1953 and broken down to towns in each state.
Here is a snapshot of FEMA’s data. Very detailed and a lot of information to look through.
With this data, I decided to create data visualization using leaflet.js and d3.js. I only concentrated on water-based emergencies, meaning hurricanes, severe storms, and floods (including flash floods).
According to the data, every state has experienced a disaster. Severe storms are most common disasters here in the U.S. Missouri, Nebraska and Oklahoma had the most disasters in the last 10 years.
With climate change, sea levels are rising and these types of disasters will be much more common in the next few years.
I hosted a thesis workshop today to receive feedback for my 5 ideas. I recruited 6 people from SVA, who had some knowledge of my ideas to some who had no idea what I was up to. The workshop was for 75 mins, I time-boxed each session to make good use of the time I had reserved from all.
I created worksheets for each idea.
It included sketch of idea, description, what makes this idea interesting? what thought does it represent? And other variations of that particular idea.
In each time-boxed session, I asked everyone to think about what makes the idea interesting and build on that idea.
It was a very useful workshop, it validated some of my ideas and questioned most of my assumptions. This also helped me to go towards a narrower path, meaning there was a clear favorite and the another ‘this could be an interesting idea’.
Some of the key things that I learned from the workshop was “Story telling can go so far”, “How can you change a person’s behavior with data?”, “In urban planning, local government will always be involved” and “don’t forget about cost!”
I will report back with an in-depth report of feedback and comments of each of the ideas. Stay tuned!
I am never this organized, but I decided to start to organize my research for my thesis. Bookmarking links does not cut it for me anymore. Especially, when I forget what they were about a week later. Researching for my thesis is information overload and super detailed in my organizing.
Here is the screenshot of what it looks like in my google drive.
I receive my research from all over. From the internet, books, videos, talks I go to and interviews. So I decided to make these my main categories. Then I would break down each research by adding the source, summary, and tagging them. The summary is the essence of the article and tagging them helps it to be a quick reference.
This video was filmed during the 1960’s predicting the future of 1999. The common theme of the video was everything is computerized at your home, even the food you ate were prepared automatically by a tap of a button. 1960’s were on point about the future. Most of the things that they predicted did not happen in 1999, but are happening now and most likely will happen in the future.
I decided to design a 2×2 matrix and see where the predictions fell within the matrix. By doing this, it dawned on me that their future has little to no human interactions. There was a video conferencing and that was used within the house to talk to each other in different rooms. In the end, they did have a house party to show off the video that they recorded, but in the day-to-day, there weren’t any human interactions, except during dinner time.
We already have less human interactions in our day to day lives with Slack, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, WhatsApp… the list goes on. Are we going to spend our lives indoors and have more computer interactions?
What did 1960’s predict?
I got a chance to listen to a talk, sponsored by AIA New York, Center for Architecture. There speakers represented from 4 cities: Copenhagen, Rotterdam, New Orleans and New York. These cities have started to think and re-design cities during heavy rains and floods.
Things I learned about Copenhagen:
This city has already started to design for the 100-year storm. In 2011, there was a major rain, that collected 150mm of water in 2 hours. The city wasn’t prepared for that.
The city looked into natural flow water, using the existing city infrastructure. Then, the city planned man-made waterways, to help move water to the harbor.
They created 4 types of typologies:
- Cloudburst roads: Cloudburst roads are used to channel and direct cloudburst water. These streets can be formed with a V-shaped profile and raised herbs to ensure water will flow in the middle of the road, away from the buildings.
- Central retention: Central retention areas are proposed in the squares and park where it is possible to delay stormwater so that cloudburst roads can be established in smaller dimensions. The central retention elements can be, for example, open depressions in the parkland or lowered seating areas
- Green streets are proposed as an upstream connection to all cloudburst roads. The green streets should be established with a combination of small-scale channels and stormwater planters or permeable paving. Stormwater should be collected, delayed and then channeled towards the cloudburst roads.
- Local retention: Local retention is small scale solutions for individual plots or communal areas. These areas deal with stormwater directly where it lands, typically in local risk areas are low. The solutions are small scales such as rain gardens and storm water collection units. For example, The lake is lowered, so it can retain more water during a storm.
Place in Copenhagen, that newly designed: Tasinge Square, SKT. Annae place, Enahue park (the park becomes a reservoir, then a park again in 24 hours) and The soul of Norrebro.
Financial and economic issues, political backup, different wishes to urban life, clash of professions: different experts need to compromise and have a working solution that is good for the city.
Things I learned about New York:
Hot days and wet days are increasing. According to NYC Department of Environmental Protection, rain is going to increase 4-11% by 2050 and 5-13% in 2080.
Green space in NYC is limited. There is NYC program called Blue belt, which restores wetlands. It is a natural solution for stormwater management.
Green infrastructure: Retrofitting NYC streets, creating rain gardens. (PS261, BK)
During extreme events, there are technical restraints, they will partner on cloudburst management. There are 6 restraints: Community, flooding canal, green space, cost benefit, and co-benefits
NYC has started to look into a natural flow of water. Asking questions, such as; Where does water go? Where do you want it to go?
The city is also looking into making bike paths waterways during a storm. It is called ‘Green corridors for water.’
South Jamaica houses have an active gardening community, so in that scenario water will retain for plants and excess water will be taken out.