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When Disaster Strikes
Risk of Storm Surge during Disaster
East Little Havana Neighborhood
Defining the New Datum

Defining the New Datum

Protecting East Little Havana from Sea Level Rise, Miami Beach, Florida

Bachelor of Architecture Thesis Project

Philip Ra, AIA
Ethen Wood
Ricardo Solar, AIA

As Miami grapples with the escalating challenges posed by climate change, including the intensified frequency of destructive hurricanes and rising sea levels during regular storm surges, the city’s existing shelters face the pressing issues of limited capacity, leading to overcrowding and insufficient resources.

However, amidst these challenges lies a unique opportunity to establish an urban beacon—a secure haven easily accessible during catastrophic events. Such a structure could play a pivotal role in supporting individuals, families, and the homeless from affected areas.

In response to the dynamic nature of hurricane relief efforts, this urban beacon could adapt and evolve, facilitating the efficient distribution of relief supplies and configuring shelter spaces based on the evolving needs of the affected community.

To maximize resilience, strategic techniques such as utilizing existing emergency access ways, constructing elevated pathways and buildings, implementing flood management through stormwater retention, and incorporating permeable design to allow controlled water flow during storm surge events would be essential components of this forward-thinking approach to climate-induced crises.

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