Saturday, June 19, 2021

This Project is Not Underwater

Foster City levee construction (SF Chronicle image)
Whether or not we agreed with the premise that global warming will endanger coastal cities, we didn't really have a choice in voting for a $90 million levee to be built.

In 2014 FEMA warned that Foster City would be in a flood zone if it didn't build a new levee that would protect it from a 100-year flood. Prior to this Foster City was classified as not being in a flood zone.

Property owners faced a decision in 2017: vote for the levee and pay an additional $279 per year in property tax, or pay flood insurance premiums of at least $2,000 per year.

(Those who didn't have a mortgage would not have been forced to purchase coverage, but these owners were relatively few.)

Your humble blogger resented the obvious nudge--let's call it a shove--but voted for Measure P anyway.

So far the project criteria are being met:
The steel is thick enough to resist not only earthquakes and strong storms — and the pressure of the 100,000 cubic yards of new soil that will be packed in behind the interlocked plates — but to support an addition when and if there’s a need to go higher.
It's been decided, so we may as well look on the bright side: property values may be boosted because buyers will believe that living in Foster City is marginally safer than elsewhere along the Bay; also, construction projects like these never get cheaper; and if sea levels do rise (I give it no more than a 10% chance in my lifetime) then it will have been worth the expense.

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