Gravesend-Bensonhurst New York Rising Community Reconstruction Plan | New York, US

Post Superstorm Sandy, WSP developed a cost-effective community flood management plan for the Gravesend-Bensonhurst area in NY. 


  • New York, NY, USA


  • New York State Governor's Office of Storm Recovery

Planning for long-term flood resilience in New York

Hurricane Irene, Tropical Storm Lee and Superstorm Sandy wreaked havoc on New York State, and have since signaled the immediate need to rebuild more resilient and sustainable communities.

The Gravesend and Bensonhurst Community in southern Brooklyn, New York, is vulnerable to tidal flooding from Coney Island Creek and Gravesend Bay. During Superstorm Sandy, the tidal storm surge resulted in a flood level estimated at 5.4 feet above ground, disabling the community’s three subway lines. Gravesend-Bensonhurst remains susceptible to flooding in low lying areas during smaller events as well. This flooding is magnified by the community’s extensive impervious surfaces, which prevent water from soaking naturally into the earth.

As part of the New York Rising Community Reconstruction Program established by the Governor’s Office of Storm Recovery (GOSR), WSP helped develop a plan that provides an integrated approach to resilience, including flood management in the Gravesend-Bensonhurst community. This plan includes several sustainable and cost-effective resilience strategies to:

  • Develop a comprehensive resiliency approach to the waterfront.
  • Protect the community from flooding during significant rain events.
  • Provide resiliency assistance and education for homeowners, renters and business owners.
  • Develop a coordinated community response plan during times of extreme weather.
  • Upgrade, maintain and strengthen community infrastructure.

The resiliency plan was recognized and awarded the “Best Inclusion of Vulnerable Populations” Rising to the Top Award by GOSR for demonstrated effective outreach to vulnerable populations.