Moakley Park

South Boston, MA
Key Elements
  • Urban park
  • Regional resilience strategy for South Boston
  • Green infrastructure strategies to address climate change

Joe Moakley Park is a retreat for local residents providing multi-use fields for baseball, soccer, and lacrosse, as well as playground equipment. Along with being a local hotspot for fun, Moakley Park is part of a resilient strategy for South Boston.

The 60-acre park is on the harbor adjacent to Carson Beach and floods regularly due to its composition of low-lying flat fields. Its location provides an opportunity to incorporate green infrastructure solutions that protect the neighborhood from storm surge, sea level rise, and increased frequency of storms. In 2019, The Moakley Park Vision Plan, commissioned by the Boston Parks and Recreation Department in partnership with the City of Boston Environment Department, positioned the park to serve as protection for the South Boston community against climate change impacts.

Nitsch has provided technical support for stormwater management and green infrastructure design on the project, as well as for traffic and circulation. Nitsch evaluated existing infrastructure in and around Moakley Park, including stormwater management, sanitary sewer, combined sewer systems, and transportation systems. All improvements to the park, including green infrastructure resilience measures, have been designed to be compatible with significant underground sanitary and storm system utility lines.

We analyzed existing climate change and anticipated flooding projections, and incorporated future climate change scenarios into the visioning process. Nitsch performed preliminary sizing calculations of future storm runoff quantities and provided preliminary designs of green infrastructure solutions. All calculations were performed with increased rainfall intensities consistent with climate change projections. We also supported the team’s community outreach and public participation efforts.