The City of Miami is understanding that the battle against rising seas is not a fight, but a negotiation. Some areas will have to be mitigated in order to save others if we truly want to be a liveable city. There are ways to make it work for us too. By upzoning certain areas, developers are incentivized to go in and adhere to newer standards. That city revenue can be used for buyback programs to create floodable zones, that are City parks in lower tides.
This concept mirrors concepts in Amsterdam and Houston. The Dutch’s negotiation with rising seas is hundreds of years old, while Houston passed a flood ordinance just this decade. Houston’s ordinance says that if your home floods, the city must buy it from you at a fair price, and use its land for mitigation. This policy allows for people not to lose their property values and creates a system for frequent flood mitigation.
Miami is taking the right steps with this program, and I hope that they can continue to create programs that do not just kick the can down the road but provide meaningful relief to our flooding neighborhoods.
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