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Lower Manhattan Coastal Resiliency (LMCR) is the City’s plan to adapt Lower Manhattan to climate change, for this generation and the next.

LMCR will protect Lower Manhattan from inundation by rising sea levels and coastal storms. The plan will ensure the area’s continuity in serving residents, workers, visitors, and commuters who rely heavily on its transit network and want to remain in their dynamic neighborhoods. 

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in citywide damages and lost economic activity from Hurricane Sandy

Why Adapt to Climate Change?

Climate change is the greatest threat New York City faces today. In October 2012, Hurricane Sandy hit New York City, flooding 17 percent of the city’s land, and claiming 44 lives. In Lower Manhattan alone, the impact of Hurricane Sandy was devastating, causing two deaths, damaging thousands of homes and interrupting a critical transportation hub.

Since then, the scientific community has reached consensus that, absent significant action, climate change will have devastating consequences at a faster rate than previously thought. Based on current projections, if no action is taken, sea-level rise will submerge parts of Lower Manhattan on a regular basis in this generation and put critical infrastructure and jobs serving all of New York City and the region at risk. This includes our subway and ferry network, our sewer system, 10 percent of the city’s jobs, and many historic, cultural and community assets.

That’s why the City is taking bold, significant action, investing $500 million in climate adaptation projects to protect Lower Manhattan now, as well as planning for long-term climate adaptation to meet the challenges of tomorrow.

Taking Action

Over a two-year period, we’re working with the Mayor’s Office of Resiliency  (MOR) to complete the Financial District and Seaport Climate Resilience Master Plan (the Climate Resilience Plan), which will focus on closing a gap in climate protection for this vital part of Lower Manhattan in the long term.

The plan will protect the Financial District and Seaport (FiDi-Seaport) area, almost a mile of unprotected coastline in Lower Manhattan with 290,000 workers, 62,000 residents, and over 500,000 commuters who rely on local transit connections to get to work.

These neighborhoods represent a unique convergence of high climate risk and few adaptation options due to a waterfront that lacks the physical space needed to implement most large-scale adaptation projects. In partnership with the communities of Lower Manhattan, NYCEDC and MOR are planning for and designing infrastructure that responds to the unique constraints and climate hazards facing the Financial District and Seaport neighborhoods and creating implementation plans to ensure these designs come to life in the future.

In October 2021, the mayor announced a $110 million allocation to support a capital project to protect the FiDi-Seaport area from the most serious effects climate change, namely flooding from sea-level rise and storm surge. The project is a standalone component of the broader strategy to be described in the upcoming Climate Resilience Plan. 


A Study and a Plan

This plan for Lower Manhattan came into focus In March 2019, when the City released the Lower Manhattan Climate Resilience Study, a comprehensive look at current and future climate risks and impacts on Lower Manhattan.  

The study assessed a broad range of climate hazards, including: 

  1. Chronic Conditions, including sea level rise, groundwater table rise, and tidal inundation
  2. Climate Events, including storm surge, extreme precipitation, and heat waves 
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of buildings in Lower Manhattan will be at risk from storm surge by 2050.

and found that:

  • By the 2050s, 37 percent of buildings in Lower Manhattan will be at risk from storm surge  
  • By 2100, almost 50 percent of buildings will be at risk from storm surge, and 20 percent of Lower Manhattan’s streets will be at risk of daily flooding due to over six feet of projected sea-level rise 
  • Groundwater table rise is projected to put 7 percent of buildings at risk of destabilization and expose 39 percent of streets with underground utilities to corrosion and water infiltration 
Lower Manhattan Resiliency Map. NYCEDC.
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The City’s investment to protect Lower Manhattan from the effects of climate change.

From the findings of the study, the City identified permanent adaptation projects and developed an overall strategy for the climate resilience of Lower Manhattan. These projects will protect 70 percent of Lower Manhattan’s coastline and will all be in construction by 2021.

Beginning in spring 2019, the City began a robust community process to discuss the study, its strategies, dedicated investments, and further planning. Each of the advancing capital projects as well as the master plan includes its own community and public engagement process.

View the Virtual Tour

Join the virtual walking tour to explore the Lower Manhattan Coastal Resiliency project first hand.

Lower Manhattan
FiDi & Seaport Interactive Open House Documents - 2.24.20
  • Event Guide
  • 1. Lower Manhattan’s Role in the City and Region
  • 2. Daily Tidal Flooding
  • 3. Rain and the Combined Sewer System
  • 4. Coastal Storm Flooding
  • 5. Citywide Adaptation
  • 6. Lower Manhattan Coastal Resiliency
  • 7. Financial District and Seaport Climate Resilience Plan
Other Public Meeting Documents
  • BK Bridge-Montgomery Coastal Resiliency – Design Update for Community Board 3 April 15, 2021
  • Community Board 1 Update February 22, 2021
  • BK Bridge-Montgomery Coastal Resiliency – Design Update for Community Board 3 September 10, 2020
  • BK Bridge-Montgomery Coastal Resiliency - Design Progress for Two Bridges Neighborhood Project Governor Alfred E. Smith Houses February 20, 2020
  • CB3 Parks and Waterfront Committee Presentation February 12, 2020
  • LMCR Financial District and Seaport Interactive Open House Flyer
  • BK Bridge-Montgomery Coastal Resiliency - Design Progress for Two Bridges Neighborhood Project Knickerbocker Village December 16, 2019
  • Manhattan Community Board 3 Parks and Waterfront Committee Meeting (Brooklyn Bridge Esplanade and BK Bridge-Montgomery Coastal Resilience Combined Update) October 10, 2019
  • BK Bridge-Montgomery Coastal Resiliency Public Meeting October 2, 2019
  • Manhattan Community Board 1 Environmental Committee Meeting October 3, 2019 
Lower Manhattan, Photo by Julienne Schaer

Southern Manhattan Coastal Protection

A study evaluating the feasibility of a multi-purpose levee (MPL)

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Get in touch

Contact: [email protected]

To learn more about LMCR, contact us.