Map of the Triboro RX via RPA
The problem with moving to many affordable neighborhoods in Brooklyn, Queens, and the Bronx is the lack of transportation options, but a new report from the Regional Plan Association calls for a Triboro RX subway line, which would weave together existing subway stops in far-reaching spots, as well as provide additional locations. And forget toll hikes to fund the line; it would run mostly above ground on existing freight train tracks, making implementation easy and cost effective.
More on the transportation proposal and see the full Triboro RX map
Homes damaged from Hurricane Sandy flooding © 6sqft
Or at least that’s what a report released today by the New York City Panel on Climate Change says. Looking at the next century, the startling analysis finds that average temperatures could rise 4.1 to 5.7 degrees by the 2050s and as much as 8.8 degrees by the 2080s; yearly heat waves will triple in occurance; there will be many more days over 90 and 100 degrees; annual precipitation will increase by 5 to 13 percent by the ’80s; the Northeast will see more intense hurricanes with extreme winds; and sea levels are expected to rise 18 to 39 inches by the ’80s and 22 to 50 inches by 2100, meaning the amount of land within FEMA’s proposed flood insurance rate maps will double, covering 99 square miles of the city.
But don’t start planning your exodus just yet. The Mayor’s Office is well aware that their findings “underscore the urgency of not only mitigating our contributions to climate change, but adapting our city to its risks.”
More on the report and see the full map
Looking for peace and quiet? Well you aren’t going to find it in NYC–or for the most part, the eastern half of the United States. A fascinating new map created by the National Park Service (NPS) shows us where we can find solace in silence (head for the dark blue) and where to expect sleepless nights (avoid the yellow). The map was generated from 1.5 million hours of acoustical monitoring, produced from staking out areas as remote as Dinosaur National Monument in Utah to our very own bustling NYC for representative samples to model sound—on an average summer day—across the entire surface of the US. From there, the NPS used algorithms that considered measurements like air quality and street traffic volume to improve the predictions. The quietest places to emerge from the bunch included Yellowstone National Park and the Great Sand Dunes National Park where noise levels were lower than 20 decibels—a silence as deep as before European colonization, researchers say. Noise levels in cities like ours averaged 50 to 60 decibels by comparison. The map is ultimately being used to determine how human-made noise is affecting wildlife with hearing more sensitive than human ears, like owls and bats that rely on quiet for hunting.
[Related: Rudolf Stefanich’s SONO Could Help Block Out City Noise and Keep Your Home Quiet]
We know that rising sea levels are one of the scarier parts of global climate change. Just take a walk past the beachfront houses in the Rockaways or on Staten Island that have been raised on stilts. According to the Real Deal, “the US Geological Survey estimates that if all the world’s glaciers melted, sea level would rise by about 80 meters, or more than 260 feet.” Though this could take thousands of years, it would make unrecognizable many of the world’s coastal cities, including New York City.
A stunning map series created by Jeffrey Linn, a Seattle resident with a background in geography and urban planning, visualizes major US cities in “this doomsday scenario” using actual geographic data. In New York City, after sea levels rose just 100 feet, the island of Manhattan is almost submerged; Brooklyn and Queens look like little archipelagos; and the Statue of Liberty is out to sea.
More details ahead
The initial results may not surprise you–young adults living in New York City tend to set up shop in North Brooklyn, the Far West Side, the Upper East Side, the East Village and western Queens. This data is courtesy of a new mapping project from the University of Waterloo School of Planning in Ontario called Generationed City.
Using census and crowd-sourced data, the project compares demographic patterns of millennials (typically defined as those born between 1980 and 2000) to that of older generations like baby boomers. It looks at North American cities with populations over 1 million where it’s commonly accepted that millennials live in central parts of cities. While the largest chunk of NYC-based data is pretty on par with what we already knew, there are some other trends, both within the city and compared with other cities, that are a bit more curious.
More findings ahead
While there were plenty of highlights in Mayor de Blasio’s State of the City address yesterday–from affordable housing to raising the minimum wage–it was undoubtedly the announcement of a city-wide ferry system that really got New Yorkers talking.
De Blasio said that the ferry service will open in 2017, with pricing on par with the Metrocard, as a way to accommodate the growing population of New York. It will serve neighborhoods including the Lower East Side, Astoria, the Rockaways, Sunset Park, Brooklyn Army Terminal, Bay Ridge, Red Hook, and Soundview, among others. A new map released today shows the entirety of the system, breaking down existing ferry lines, those planned for 2017 and 2018, and those proposed.
More details and the full interactive map ahead
Though winter storm Juno isn’t going down in history as the biggest snowstorm to ever hit NYC, it was the first time the city completely shut down the subway system due to a snowstorm. Governor Cuomo and the MTA said the shutdown was necessary because a portion of almost every train line runs outdoors. Not happy with that reasoning? Then you’ll really enjoy this map from WNYC called the Snowpiercer; it proposes how the subway system could operate during a 40-inch snowstorm.
See the full map here
Part of the proposal, “A Really Greater New York”, that shows the East River infill and southern Manhattan peninsula
The East River may not be the most beautiful body of water we’ve ever witnessed, but that certainly doesn’t mean we’d like to see it paved over. That’s exactly what T. Kennard Thomson, an engineer and planner, proposed in 1911, hoping to create a mega-Manhattan. Plus, he wanted to add a long hunk of infill at the southern tip of Manhattan, creating a new peninsula bolstered by Governor’s Island, add more new land in the Hudson between Bayonne and Manhattan, and relocated the Brooklyn Navy Yard.
Let’s take a closer look at this ambitious, but never realized, plan
One of the holiday windows at Saks, via Google Maps
We’re starting to think Google wants us to never leave our apartments again. Not only can we tour the elite Gramercy Park without a key and explore NYC in 3D, but now we can even check out the department store holiday window displays with Google Maps, welcome news for those of us who want to get in the holiday spirit without battling the crowds.
The Observer reports that the feature is available in London and New York, the latter showcasing those windows at Saks Fifth Avenue, Macy’s, and Bloomingdale’s. It’s part of Google Maps’ new Business View feature, which makes it possible to virtually go inside businesses and provides special offerings like a 360-degree tour of the Colbert Report set.
Take a look at this year’s holiday windows
For those of you who remember the quirky Times story featuring a Google team’s attempt to document every inch of Ellis Island, here comes the the payoff. The awe-inspiring world of Google Maps and Google Earth is growing into an even grander time suck with a slew of new city sites rendered in 3-D. Their latest update now lets us explore New York’s landmarks from top to torch to spire, and all the details in between, right from our desktops. Some of the most impressive sites worth a gander include the Statue of Liberty and One World Trade Center.