Springfield to Receive $17 Million funding to support Urban Watershed Resilience Zone

Springfield, MA (Photo: Wikipedia)

SPRINGFIELD, MA–The City of Springfield, MA, will receive $17,056,880 in NDRC funding to support the creation of an Urban Watershed Resilience Zone. The Resilience Zone will include economically-distressed neighborhoods, and will create an innovation and job training center, create a new program for property owners to restore affordable housing units, and the installation of a heat and power plant to provide non-grid energy to critical facilities in the event of power loss during a disaster.

Springfield, MA (Photo: Wikipedia)
Springfield, MA (Photo: Wikipedia)

U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Julián Castro and the Rockefeller Foundation announced the winners of the $1 billion National Disaster Resilience Competition (NDRC). Among the 13 grant recipients is the City of Springfield, Mass. who will use this funding for resilient housing and infrastructure projects in particular areas that were impacted by recent major disasters.

The National Disaster Resilience Competition winners are:






California $70,359,459 New York City $176,000,000
Connecticut $54,277,359 New Orleans $141,260,569
Iowa $96,887,177 Minot, ND $74,340,770
Louisiana $92,629,249 Shelby County, TN $60,445,163
New Jersey $15,000,000 Springfield, MA $17,056,880
New York $35,800,000
Tennessee $44,502,374
Virginia $120,549,000

“Climate change is real and we must think more seriously about how to plan for it,” said HUD Secretary Julián Castro. The grants we award today, and the other sources of capital these grants will leverage, will make communities stronger, more resilient and better prepared for future natural disasters such as floods and wildfires. The National Disaster Resilience Competition exemplifies how government can work hand-in-hand with the philanthropic and private sectors to create lasting partnerships that will allow us to together face the challenges of tomorrow.”

“The National Disaster Resilience Competition demonstrated where we are moving as a country, embracing resilience as a way to build a better future,” said Dr. Judith Rodin, President of The Rockefeller Foundation. “The communities awarded funding through the Competition – and in fact all those that competed – today have a greater awareness of their vulnerabilities and strengths and what they need to do to be ready for whatever comes their way. This is the heart of resilience.”

The competition took place in two phases, with final winners selected from previously announced 40 states and local communities designated as finalists. Finalists were then asked to submit specific projects that would advance their community’s resilience plans. More than 25 federal agencies or offices, and 100 industry experts were involved in the implementation of the 16-month long competition.

NDRC is funded through Community Development Block Grant-Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) appropriations provided by the Disaster Relief Appropriations Act of 2013.

NDRC was developed in response to requests from state, local, and tribal leaders seeking to build resilience and better prepare their communities for the impacts of climate change, following the model of the Rebuild by Design Competition, and the recommendations of the Hurricane Sandy Rebuilding Task Force. The National Disaster Resilience Competition was designed to promote risk assessment, stakeholder engagement, and resilience planning in communities where the risks of disaster are projected to increase substantially due to climate change.

Partnership with Rockefeller Foundation

The Rockefeller Foundation worked closely with HUD and state and local governments to encourage and support a culture of resilience around disaster preparedness and planning in American communities. Through a companion effort, the Rockefeller Foundation provided targeted technical assistance to the applicants and supported a stakeholder-driven process, informed by the best available data, to identify recovery needs and innovative solutions. The strategic partnership between the Rockefeller Foundation and HUD drew on the successful strategies of the Rebuild by Design competition, where the Foundation provided lead support for administration of the competition and community engagement.