Boston Redevelopment Authority Reveals New Building Codes

By Brianna Bigelow 11-25-13

Photo: Boston Buildings Credit: Wikipedia via Creative Commons
Photo: Boston Buildings
Credit: Wikipedia via Creative Commons

The Boston Redevelopment Authority (BRA) recently discussed what should happen in Boston to decrease the threats of a super storm. The storms, like the devastating Hurricane Sandy which lashed out at the East Coast last year, could prove to be disastrous should they hit Boston again.

If the storm had hit Boston during high tide, six percent of the city would have flooded. Officials in Boston, including the BRA are determined not to leave anything else up to chance.

The BRA unanimously voted to approve the adoption of the Climate Change Preparedness and Resiliency Guidelines in the Article 80 development review zoning. These new guidelines will improve standards for new Boston buildings to meet in order to ensure safety in the future.

Melina Schuler, a spokesperson for the BRA, explained what these guidelines hope to accomplish: “The BRA’s new climate change guidelines and checklist aim to raise developer awareness around extreme climate events ranging from heat to flooding. The new regulations will assist the BRA in working with development teams to build a more resilient city by encouraging them to incorporate climate change preparedness into new building design and helping them to make smart investment decisions.”

New buildings being constructed in the city will have to withstand everything from sea-level rise, to severe freezing rain, to increased wind gusts, and everything in between. The BRA hopes that these new plans with improve the city’s safety for its residents.

This change in the review process, along with several other climate change initiatives, are due to be adopted in 2014.