Improving Resiliency to Natural Hazards: Planning Strategies and Recovery Efforts
Monday, September 26, 2016
3:30 p.m. - 4 p.m. CDT
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Learn about improving the resiliency of Oklahoma to natural hazards. This session will include an interactive discussion linking the analysis of the state’s extreme weather and climate events with how planners are addressing the challenges associated with those events, as well as examples of how planners are actively involved in natural hazard resiliency efforts. Beginning with a weather and climate hazards profile for the state of Oklahoma, participants will have the opportunity to share and learn from each other about various aspects of their planning processes including the developmental stages, collaborations and resources used. The discussion will also explore how planners connect with emergency managers. Current resiliency efforts will then be explained by two examples resulting from recent tornado events. After the May 2013 tornado, the city of Moore faced numerous structural damages including for both residential and economical disadvantaged neighborhoods. City officials worked closely with residents and professors at the University of Oklahoma to tackle these issues. It was determined that improving the overall structural integrity of residential structures would reduce the damage resulting from wind speeds accompanying tornadoes of magnitude EF2 or less. This was accomplished by 12 building code modifications. Following these advancements, an EF2 tornado recently hit Moore in 2015 and provided a rare opportunity for engineers to observe the performance of the structures under the new building code. The performance of these recent building code improvements when subjected to winds associated with an EF2 tornado will be further discussed. Also resulting from the 2013 damages, the city recognized the opportunity to turn a blighted mobile home park into affordable housing within the tornado area. The project intended to create a sustainable mixed-income community with new apartment housing and commercial opportunities, along with re-visioned public spaces. A new zoning code is currently being developed to support the redevelopment plan that tailors elements of the “Smart Code” to a suburban community. Using graphics and GIS mapping, this session will detail the public participation process and organic development of the redevelopment plan as well as summarizing the regulating code and next steps for the project.
Elizabeth Jones, AICP