Design Dialogues: Preparing for Sea Level Rise in the Bay Area

DATE: Wednesday, May 11
TIME: 6:00-8:30 pm
Exploratorium Fisher Bay Observatory
Pier 15 at Embarcadero
and Green Street map
The Exploratorium is served by the F streetcar as well as many MUNI buses and rail lines.The Embarcadero BART station is a 10 minute walk away. Outdoor bike parking is available next to the museum.
Admission is free. RSVP required.
E-mail the Exploratorium or call 415.528.4444, and choose option 5

The increasingly grim predictions about the acceleration of climate change are alarming. Although mitigation is essential, adaptation is increasingly our best strategy for coping with the effects of a changing climate, which will have a profound effect on every aspect of our lives. These effects will be especially challenging in cities, which lack nature’s normally resilient systems. Finding effective and replicable strategies for making our cities ecologically resilient is critical to our ability to manage storms and rising tides. Fortunately, many of the changes that will make our cities more resilient to climate change also help to create urban landscapes that are more livable, healthy, inspiring and promote biodiversity. Scientists, planners, designers and communities are discovering that the ecological processes underlying our urban landscapes may be key to finding strategies for adaptation. Their work is informing new permitting structures, policies and projects that may help to mobilize new strategies for making cities more resilient.

As the Bay Area gears up for sea level rise, what role can designers play in envisioning a more resilient future? How can design solutions accommodate the perspectives of scientists, governments, and communities? Join a conversation about planning the shoreline of the future. We will look at how designers and city planners are considering historical ecology, environmental services, grey and green infrastructures and new methods of community engagement.

Our presenters include Tom Leader, the Principal of Tom Leader Studio, a Bay Area Landscape Architecture firm that designed the “Richmond Bayway,” a proposal for a re-imagined resilient shoreline; Elizabeth Ranieri and Byron Kuth are founding principals of Kuth/Ranieri Architects, whose firm proposed “Folding Water,” a levee system for the San Francisco Estuary and “Vertical Wetlands,” a project that creates a green wall filtration system, wetland and recreational waterfront in China Basin, one of San Francisco’s lowest lying areas; Gil Kelley, the Director of Citywide Planning for the San Francisco Planning Department and one of the instigators of the Bay Area Resilient by Design Challenge, a design competition launching this this fall that aims to develop a unified vision for a more sustainable and resilient Bay Area; and Leslie Alden, Aide to Marin County Supervisor Kate Sears and a commissioner of BCDC whose work focuses on the environmental and social impacts of climate disruption.

This program is a co-presentation of the Exploratorium’s Fisher Bay Observatory and is part of the Conversations about Landscape series.


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