The Necklace

The demolition of an entire block in Union Beach, NJ after Superstorm Sandy presented a unique opportunity to explore resilient design strategies as they relate to the devastation of natural disasters and to consider the broader implications of building in shoreline areas during an era of rapid climate change. Located in the marshlands off Raritan Bay, our site sits just 4’ above sea level surrounded on three sides by marshlands. Given the most conservative estimates of sea level rise, over the next 25-50 years, our site will experience annual flooding and see waters rise as high as 4’ above grade during average storm surges. Therefore, our scheme gives back the northern half of the block to wetlands recovery and treats the southern strip along Prospect Avenue as ‘bay-front’ housing. By increasing density, from detached single family homes to attached two-family townhouse-style homes, we have replaced all the demolished dwellings on the block.

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