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Enhancing Flood Protection in NJ [AUDIO]

New Jersey is getting a total of $380 million in federal funding for two new flood mitigation projects, one in the Meadowlands, and the other along the Weehawken, Hoboken and Jersey City corridor.

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HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan discussing beefing up flood protection in NJ. (David Matthau, Townsquare Media NJ)

The projects were designed during a “Rebuild by Design” competition sponsored by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

During an announcement in Little Ferry – where hundreds of homes were flooded during Superstorm Sandy – HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan said the Rebuild by Design competition, which involved 148 teams from around the world, was focused on making the region better prepared for future storms.

“From the beginning, our goals have been to help families get back in their homes and to rebuild the region stronger and more prepared for future storm,” Donovan said.

He emphasized New Jersey is a great place to live, work and do business.

Donovan said one of  the projects – in the Meadowlands – will be engineered “to restore water absorbing wetlands and to create a multi-purpose berm to provide both flood protection and recreation opportunities.”

A second project will focus on the Hoboken, Weehawken and Jersey City Area.

“That will create new resilient infrastructure to protect an area that is susceptible to flash flooding and storm surges. These winning proposals are truly transformative and serve as blueprints for how we can safeguard the region and make more environmentally and economically resilient,” Donovan said.

Donovan stressed that implementing these proposals is the right thing to do from a moral perspective, “because they’re going to save lives, but it also makes economic sense because every dollar we save today on hazard mitigation saves us $4 in avoided costs the next time a storm hits. By investing in these proposals we’re going to ensure that when that next storm comes, New Jersey will be safer and better prepared.”

Gov. Chris Christie said the Rebuild by Design competition “is just another example of how we can achieve great things when we collaborate – when we work together on the federal, state and local levels.”

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