Work on disaster-resilient building begins in Manhattan

A New York neighbourhood badly hit by Hurricane Sandy is now benefiting from increased investment, the latest of which is a $9.89m project to produce a disaster-resilient apartment complex in Manhattan.

CTA Architects, Haven Plaza Square LLC, Association of New York Catholic Homes, New York Institute for Human Development, and The Wavecrest Management Team are behind the upgrades to the Haven Plaza Affordable Housing Complex.

It is designed for architectural impact, to secure continuity of utility services for residents of the complex’s 371 apartments during power disruptions and natural disasters.
Haven Plaza Manhattan resiliency building
The new facility will provide heat steam and house and protect electrical and plumbing utilities in case of another flooding or power supply disruption.

The East Village, where the building is located, was badly mauled by the 2012 hurricane, when the nearby East River overflowed its banks.

The Con Edison East River Generating Station adjacent to Haven Plaza exploded, and, as a result, Haven Plaza lost all electricity and steam for heat. Residents ” many elderly ” were trapped without elevator service, electricity, heat, or water.”

The New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) and the New York City Housing Development Corporation (HDC) awarded nearly $10 million to Haven Plaza Square LLC for the project through the New York City Build It Back program.

Build It Back was launched in 2013 to assist homeowners, landlords, and tenants in the five boroughs whose homes and properties were damaged by Hurricane Sandy.

“The new 2,080-square foot building, located at 212 Avenue C at East 13th Street, will house three boilers for heating steam on the second level, with gas as the primary fuel; electrical meters, domestic hot water pumps, and hot water heaters on the first level; and oil backup storage in the protected sub-grade space,” explained CTA Architects principal Daniel J. Allen, AIA. “The new facility addresses Haven Plaza’s need to be self-sufficient during both regular operations and in case of a natural disaster, instead of relying on a costly ConEd steam supply.”

Electrical work will also include installing new wiring and platforms for portable power generators in all three buildings to be brought in in case of emergency to supply electricity to the building, including for lights and elevators.

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