Today, City Council proposed a package of bills intended to strengthen New York’s defenses in the event of another storm on the scale of Hurricane Sandy. The bills would raise elevation requirements on new and newly-renovated buildings in flood zones, in order to better protect against rising waters.

A press release from Christine Quinn gives more information:

Study the feasibility of relocating power lines underground. The council Committee on Consumer Affairs will examine a bill that would require the mayor’s Office of Long Term Planning and Sustainability to conduct a study over the next six months on the feasibility of placing power lines underground. The study will review recent power outages in the city and include a list of areas that would most benefit by burying power lines.

Adopt new flood elevation maps. Legislation would adopt the new FEMA flood advisory maps, expected to be released this week. The maps would expand the areas that must adhere to flood-proofing requirements in the city’s building code.

Impose new flood-proofing requirements for buildings in vulnerable areas. Legislation would alter the city’s building code to raise elevation requirements for future buildings in flood zones as well as their boilers and other critical equipment. The bill would also establish more restrictive flood construction standards for buildings in coastal A-zones, which are areas that may be flooded by coastal waves.

Adopt more stringent codes for health care facilities.

(Photo: Wally Gobetz/Flickr)