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Brooklyn Bridge-Montgomery Coastal Resilience Stakeholder Engagement

New York City, NY
May 2019
Closed Project
Service areas

Collaborative research


Stakeholder Outreach + Engagement Strategy


Data Visualization + Design

The destructive impacts of Hurricane Sandy on Lower Manhattan’s
Two Bridges neighborhood underscored the vulnerability of New York
City’s coastal communities to natural disasters. During the storm, the
high-density public housing developments that make up much of
the coastline lost power and became further isolated from essential
physical and social infrastructure. To mitigate future flood and storm
surge risks, the Lower Manhattan Coastal Resiliency (LMCR) Project—
led by the Mayor’s Office of Resiliency (MOR) and the New York
Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC)—aimed to protect
coastal neighborhoods from climate impacts through infrastructure
investments, while upholding community access to the waterfront.

AECOM led the development of a multidisciplinary, collaborative
resilience strategy to protect Lower Manhattan residents. In Two
Bridges, AECOM advanced designs and planning for new flood
protection technology to support the city’s goals—while building
on earlier phases of the LMCR project. Karp Strategies joined the
Brooklyn Bridge-Montgomery Coastal Resilience project team as
community engagement experts to support NYCEDC, MOR, and the
Department of Design and Construction’s efforts to communicate
clearly and effectively with community members about the intended
resiliency goals of the proposed infrastructure, ensure that voices
of residents and local organizations are heard, and prepare the
community for construction. This work aimed to demystify flood
prevention and emergency response strategies within the Two Bridges
community. Building on engagement from earlier phases, Karp
Strategies created an engagement strategy that elevates community
members’ input while illustrating the city’s opportunities and
constraints and keeping key project information about flood protection
at the forefront. The strategy is grounded in Two Bridges’ local context
and employs a multi-lingual, information-forward, and, when possible,
hands-on approach.

Karp Strategies hosted in-person and virtual public meetings. Karp
Strategies also spearheaded both a digital and on-the-ground
engagement campaign engaging resident tenant associations,
community-based organizations (CBOs), and elected officials and
their constituents through easy-to-read materials, including flyers,
posters, tailored social media graphics, a coloring book, and banners.
In response to COVID-19, Karp Strategies pivoted and designed
an entirely socially distant outreach and engagement campaign
which leveraged existing community networks and leaders. These
efforts were part of a larger commitment to shaping an inclusive and
transparent engagement process by meeting community residents
where they were.

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