NYC gets record $3B FEMA grant for Sandy housing repairs

Sign in front of the Federal Emergency Management Agency Headquarters in Washington, D.C. (Mark Van Scyoc/Shutterstock.com)

 New York’s 33 public housing developments will get $3 billion from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, its largest grant ever, to repair damage from Hurricane Sandy and to protect against a future storm.

About 80,000 tenants will benefit from more secure lobbies in buildings equipped with better lighting, security cameras, boilers and electrical equipment, said Mayor Bill de Blasio, who was joined by U.S Senator Charles Schumer in announcing the grant Tuesday at a housing development in the Red Hook section of Brooklyn.

“We had the devastation of Sandy, but it gave us the capital to rebuild parts of NYCHA better than before,” Schumer told reporters, referring to the Housing Authority by its acronym. “Even people not affected by Sandy, their lives are going to be made much better.”

The October 2012 storm killed at least 40 in the city, and sent water surging through Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island and Manhattan, flooding thousands of homes, subway lines and vehicle tunnels.

The funds will pay for relocating heating and electricity systems to higher ground, building barriers for low-lying buildings near waterways and beaches, and providing stand-by generators to mitigate power losses, which affected tens of thousands of New Yorkers for several days.

“It will allow us to fortify buildings and utilities so that they’re resilient — and residents are much more protected — the next time extreme weather hits,” de Blasio said.

Apr 01, 2015 | By Henry Goldman

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