Also: Paris gets to keep its car ban, and cities are turning snails yellow.

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What We’re Following

Go with the flow: Storm-resilient design has become a must-have feature for parks, and that’s especially true in low-lying landscapes along the riversides of crowded cities. Take, for example, Hunters Point South Park, an 11-acre greenery on the waterfront of Long Island City, Queens. When Hurricane Sandy hit in 2012, during the park’s first phase of construction, a storm surge that caused damage all over New York City inundated the park—and then calmly drained back into the river, leaving the park intact.

(Vecerka / Esto, courtesy of SWA/BALSLEY and WEISS/MANFREDI)

Now, the former industrial site fills with water twice a day, as the East River tide rolls in. Instead of using concrete to separate land and water, marshlands act like a giant sponge that protects the neighborhood around it. It’s an idea that’s gaining popularity as a way to mitigate the impacts of climate change, with places from New Orleans to Amsterdam learning that a little bit of intentional flooding can go a long way. CityLab’s Karim Doumar has the story behind a storm-resilient park in Queens.

Andrew Small


More on CityLab

Paris Gets to Keep Its Car Ban

Mayor Anne Hidalgo shifted her defense of the pedestrianization plan, winning with an argument that a car ban protects the city’s heritage and tourism.

Feargus O'Sullivan

Cities Will Bear the Brunt of Trump’s Aid Cuts to Palestine

In the course of a few months, the United States suddenly pulled hundreds of millions of dollars in aid. What does that mean for urban Palestinians?

Karim Doumar

What the ‘Village Voice’ Understood About the Power of Photography

For decades, the alt-weekly's photographers served as the eyes of the streets, working with activists to document and publicize the anguish and rage of everyday New Yorkers.

Tamar Carroll and Joshua Meltzer

Helsinki’s MaaS App, Whim: Is It Really Mobility’s Great Hope?

The transport app Whim is oft-cited as a model for the future of urban mobility. Two years post-launch, has it changed the way people move around Helsinki?

David Zipper

Cities Are Turning Snails Yellow

Urban areas are heat islands. Could that be dictating the color of their gastropods?

Sarah Zhang


What We’re Reading

The advocates pushing Boston’s transit system to do better (Politico)

We can’t solve homelessness until we understand how we’ve made it worse (Washington Post)

Dallas and Houston’s “bullet train to the future” (Curbed)

A city cursed by sprawl: Can the Beltline save Atlanta? (The Guardian)

Bill Daley, whose brother and father ran Chicago for 43 years, backs term limits for mayor (Chicago Tribune)


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