Climate Ready Resilient Dorchester

Dorchester, MA
Key Elements
  • Coastal flood protection
  • Neighborhood-level resilience strategy
  • Green infrastructure toolkit

Nitsch helped develop a neighborhood-level resilience strategy for the Climate Ready Dorchester project. The low-lying diverse neighborhood includes homes, businesses, open space, and key transportation routes which are already experiencing nuisance flooding and are prone to serious impacts of coastal flooding and sea-level rise in the future. To help mitigate impacts, the design team developed a set of flooding intervention strategies geared to protect different shoreline typologies such as park land, beach, revetment/bulkhead, tidal wetland, and Harborwalks from rising sea levels and storm surges. The team looked at Dorchester’s six coastal zones, and assessed the risk and vulnerability to coastal flooding for each.

Nitsch supported the development of strategies for coastal flood protection. We assisted with the synthesis of selected reports pertaining to infrastructure and utilities; provided advice on the development of criteria and guidelines, permitting requirements, flood pathway assessment, and conceptual designs for near- and long-term measures; and assisted in the preparation of the overall report.

We prepared a tool kit of green infrastructure measures to meet a variety of flood intervention needs which can be applied to different coastal types. Flood protection interventions address multiple benefits, principles of adaptive design, community resilience, and coastal wetland resilience or nature-based storm damage protection techniques.  Furthermore, we participated in meetings with the steering committee and supported the engagement process through staffed meetings (“open houses”) for Resilient Dorchester, allowing us to obtain feedback from the public on the different resilient strategies in specific coastal zones.

Key Collaborators

Owner: City of Boston
Landscape Architect: SCAPE Landscape Architecture
Coastal Flood Analyst: Woods Hole Group
Risk Assessor: Tetra Tech
Policy Specialist: Utile
Engagement Strategist: All Aces