This week, many BMW Guggenheim Lab staffers based in New York watched as trees went down, water filled the streets, and neighborhoods went dark. This time-lapse captures the city’s experience as a whole—as rain spatters the camera, you can see the lights of Lower Manhattan flicker and go out.
After downtown New York lost power, photographer Randy Scott Slavin took this series of surreal photographs. In these images, the only lights are those trailed by cars as they streak through the deserted streets.
More matter-of-fact, but no less compelling, are the storm-related photos on the Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA) Flickr page, updated continuously in a laudable effort at transparency. Here, you can see work crews struggling to repair stations—and subway escalators that descend into water.
Richard Florida points out that, given the vulnerability of the world’s mega-cities to natural disasters, it’s time to radically retool urban rebuilding: “The opportunity is to rethink infrastructure in terms of resilience, and not just rebuild it as it was…”
In the same vein, this thoughtful Foreign Policy piece points out that, in light of rising sea levels, many more cities could face flooding in the coming years. Topping their list of cities that would suffer in a flood: the Lab’s next stop, Mumbai.
And, if you were wondering exactly how much devastation a flood would cause in Mumbai, The New York Times has imagined what that scenario would look like.