New York has a history of governors who were master builders, Rockefeller, Smith, Carey, Pataki and both Roosevelts among them. Add Andrew Cuomo to that list. While Mayor Bloomberg has so far refused to consider building new infrastructure to help protect New York City from future natural disasters, Governor Cuomo strongly declared last night that it is his intention to do so.
“I think we have to look at the bigger things,” he said at a press briefing yesterday evening. The Observer had asked if he was leaning toward small fixes, like new MTA vents to keep out rain water, or more grandiose plans, like locks and storm gates in the harbor (a practice that is popular in Europe). The governor clearly fell into the latter camp, and much of the reason seems to be because he fears this is only the beginning of problems from these natural disasters. After all, he has spent his first two years in office cleaning up after two hurricanes.
“I do not believe these extreme weather patterns are going to end, I do not believe, anymore, that this is once in a lifetime, once in a hundred years, once in a generation or just a fluke,” the governor said. “It’s happening more and more, with more and more frequency. This is just statistics and probability. You look at the number of devastating floods, the number of devastating fires, the number of extreme weather patterns is going up. That is a fact. That is a fact.”