Rising Tides: Planning and designing Boston’s land use and mobility system for a changing climate led by professors Christopher P. Zegras and Brent Ryan has been awarded an MIT Center for Advanced Urbanism Seed Grant. They will lead an interdisciplinary team of seven students to explore strategies for adapting to potential sea level rise (SLR) through simulated interventions in the land use-transportation system in the Boston Metropolitan Area (BMA). Much of the research into SLR adaptation focuses on intervening to prevent inundation, but such approaches may not be possible given the scale of the potential impacts, therefore planning for the contingency that inundation cannot be avoided provides us with the opportunity to build better and more resilient plans for the future.
This project will build from an existing integrated land use-transportation (LUT) modeling system, calibrated for the BMA as part of an existing research project which is formalizing techniques for representing and propagating uncertainty in LUT models. As part of that work, they are examining possible sea level rise impacts on the transportation system network. The seed funding will allow the team to extend from that work and formally integrate the land use model to demonstrate its value in assessing regional resiliency to sea level rise, including by examining the settlement pattern implications for a selected area of the BMA.