Living Breakwaters enters construction

Sep 13, 2021

Tottenville, NY | September 13, 2021 – Today, the New York State Governor’s Office of Storm Recovery (GOSR) announced the start of in-water construction for Living Breakwaters, a $107 million project with a layered approach to risk reduction —enhancing physical, ecological and social resilience for the South Shore of Staten Island.

The project consists primarily of 2,400 linear feet of near-shore breakwaters—partially submerged structures built of stone and ecologically-enhanced concrete units—that will break waves, reduce (and eventually reverse) erosion of the beach along Conference House Park, and provide a range of habitat spaces for oysters, fin fish and other marine species.

The Living Breakwaters concept was developed by a large, multi-disciplinary team led by SCAPE as part of a winning proposal for Rebuild By Design, the design competition launched by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) after Superstorm Sandy.

“Living Breakwaters represents years of teamwork—research, shore walks, oyster pilots, hydrodynamic modeling and community planning meetings. So many people over so many years have provided valuable input,” said Kate Orff, Founding Principal of SCAPE. “It’s inspiring to see this model of coastal blue-green infrastructure and community protection now being realized in Raritan Bay.”