New York City’s Waterfront, Vision 2020

New York City boasts 578 miles of waterfront, and as part of the efforts to enhance the City’s Comprehensive Waterfront Plan, I was involved with the Department of City Planning in analyzing recent waterfront investments for the City’s Vision 2020, a long range plan to think about New York City’s future on the waterfront.

In 1992, New York City launched the Comprehensive Waterfront Plan, a policy plan to maintain and develop New York City’s waterfront. Six Significant Maritime Industrial Areas (SMIA) were designated in the plan as areas suited for industrial and maritime activities. Revisiting the Revitalization and Waterfront Plan, the Department of City Planning posed the question of ‘What waterfront areas have seen investment in the last 7 to 10 years?’. Using WRP applications and the WRP database, I converted hard copies and electronic files into a standard Access format.  Subsequently, I imported these files into ArcGIS, creating mappable point files. These files also contain other valuable information, such as what type of project, public or private, project name, date, and description, providing the Department with more uses of the data.

At the end of the project, I created a city-wide map and borough maps to illustrate the existing SMIAs, WRP projects, and the manufacturing zones.

From these maps, I was able to get a better understanding of where these projects were located.
Evidently, activity has been occurring outside of these designated SMIAs, therefore the Department will have to rethink about incorporating these areas into the revised plan.  In addition,  this data can now be used for other purposes such as for employment and land use data. Furthermore, the datafiles that I created can help further analysis on New York City’s waterfront.