When the sun sets tonight and the clock turns to 8:15pm, thousands of people along the northeast coast will simultaneously light candles and begin a moment of silence, remembering the destruction that swept through coastal communities courtesy of Superstorm Sandy. That moment will mark exactly two years since the high-tide breached the walls of Sheepshead Bay and began dousing our streets, our business, our homes, and claimed 125 American lives.
Like last year, contemplating a slew of “anniversary” articles is a gut wrenching endeavor, and one that I find difficult considering we still wrestle with the effects every day – and cover it nearly as often. It’s not two years since Sandy. Here in Sheepshead Bay and Manhattan Beach and Brighton Beach and Coney Island and Gerritsen Beach – and dozens of other impacted communities – Sandy is still very much every day.
But there is a need for a long view. Things are getting better. They are returning to normal, and on many fronts we are better prepared for another storm today than we were on October 28, 2012. It is the obsession of just about every citywide media outlet today, so here are some of the best, most enlightening articles published this week on the progress made, and the work still to be done.
- The vast majority of area residents do not believe the city is any better prepared for another storm than before Sandy. [Gotham Gazette]
- In reality, dozens of smaller projects are underway or already completed that may not stop the flooding, but will protect infrastructure and allow for a swifter recovery, and larger ones are in the pipeline. [NY Times]
- Some businesses are taking matters into their own hands for all of our benefit: gas stations are storm-proofing to avoid the awful gas lines that hampered recovery efforts in 2012. [ABC News]
- The economic tolls could be higher in a major flood, though; with the expansion of the flood zone, the number of buildings at risk and their combined values has more than tripled to 85,000 buildings and $129.1 billion. [NY Daily News]
- While more affluent victims have rebuilt, the most vulnerable – often poor, non-English speakers – are in as bad or worse a position than they were before the storm, moving back into hastily rebuilt basement apartments. [BK Bureau]
- Speaking of those in need, a group has formed advocating that relief funds being spent are used in a way that could give jobs to those impacted by the storm. [NY Daily News]
- But, hey, the salvaged wood from the boardwalk is getting new life, with plans to use it to build the US pavilion for the 2015 World’s Fair. [Real Estate Weekly]
If you feel we missed one worth sharing, let us know in the comments or at editor [at] sheepsheadbites [dot] com and we’ll add it. And don’t forget to come to the candlelight vigil tonight to support and be supported by your neighbors.