PROJECTS & CLIENTS

Projects & Clients 2018-05-09T22:58:07+00:00

PROJECT HIGHLIGHTS

OUR CLIENTS ARE RESILIENCE LEADERS AND INNOVATORS.

Building resilience is inherently a long-term process. At re:focus most of our projects will take decades to be fully implemented or constructed. That said, all of our projects are also designed to generate clear short-term wins and results. Below are highlights of some of the clients we have supported and projects successes we have achieved to date.

HOBOKEN NW RESILIENCY PARK

CLIENTS: CITY OF HOBOKEN
(RE.INVEST INITIATIVE)

THROUGH THE RE.INVEST INITIATIVE, THE RE:FOCUS TEAM WORKED WITH THE CITY OF HOBOKEN TO REDESIGN A CONTAMINATED 6-ACRE INDUSTRIAL SITE INTO A NEW FLOOD PROTECTION PROJECT.

What makes the project concept unique is how it combines three traditional infrastructure projects in a new layer cake design. The bottom layer is a 10 million gallon “bathtub” for capturing stormwater and sewer overflows (that would otherwise rush straight out to the Hudson River). The next three layers are a typical underground parking garage with twist. The garage is designed with pumps to make sure it deliberately floods from the bottom up in a major storm and can hold up to 30 million extra gallons of water to protect the surrounding neighborhood from disaster. Finally the top layer is a park, designed like a sponge with green infrastructure that can catch water and prevent smaller floods. The major innovation is in combining public goods with a private parking garage that can help finance the whole system.

Based on this design, our team supported Hoboken’s application to the New Jersey Environmental Infrastructure Trust for its first phase of funding. In 2015, the City received ~$12.5 million to acquire the land and move forward with the project. Since this award and the conclusion of the RE.invest Initiative, the design has undergone several revisions and the City in collaboration with the North Hudson Sewer Authority has gone one step beyond the RE.invest team’s original concept to explore full sewer separation for the area.

LEARN MORE →
INNOVATION LAB: CENTER FOR GLOBAL DISASTER PROTECTION →

CLIENTS: DFID, CENTRE FOR GLOBAL DISASTER PROTECTION & LLOYD’S OF LONDON

In January 2018, the Centre for Global Disaster Protection with support from DFID and Lloyd’s of London launched its first Innovation Lab to help governments of developing countries identify new solutions for using insurance and risk transfer to become more resilient to natural disasters, avoid humanitarian crises, and enhance disaster aid. re:focus collaborated with RMS and Vivid Economics to design the Lab format, create workshop materials, and deliver a report on Innovative Finance for Resilient Infrastructure summarizing the Lab’s preliminary findings.

RESILIENT BY DESIGN: BAY AREA CHALLENGE FINANCE TEAM →

CLIENTS: BAY AREA CHALLENGE DESIGN TEAMS

Resilient by Design was launched in May 2017 as a year-long collaborative design challenge bringing together local residents, public officials and local, national, and international experts to develop innovative community-based solutions to strengthen the San Francisco Bay Area’s resilience to sea level rise, severe storms, flooding and earthquakes. re:focus CEO, Shalini Vajjhala is a member of the finance advisory team and contributing author on the Finance Guide For Resilient By Design Bay Area Challenge Design Teams.

CITY OF NEW ORLEANS NATIONAL DISASTER RESILIENCE COMPETITION →

CLIENTS: CITY OF NEW ORLEANS

The City of New Orleans was one of 13 winners of the HUD National Disaster Resilience Competition, receiving an award of ~$140 million to implement a wide range of resilience projects. re:focus is providing technical assistance and advisory services to the City as part of a team of contractors focused on community-based project implementation and finance.

CHIEF RESILIENCE OFFICER SYSTEMS-THINKING CURRICULUM →

CLIENTS: 100 RESILIENT CITIES

In support of the 100 Resilient Cities educational objectives, re:focus developed a new package of training material and applied learning  content for a systems thinking and design module of a new 100 Resilient Cities Chief Resilience Officer (CRO) curriculum. Team members also delivered a workshop on urban resilience problem solving and systems thinking to select CROs and staff.

CITY OF SAN FRANCISCO RESILIENCE STRATEGY →

CLIENTS: CITY OF SAN FRANCISCO OFFICE OF THE CHIEF RESILIENCE OFFICER

In April 2016, San Francisco released its first ever resilience strategy as part of the 100 Resilience Cities Network. re:focus partners provided strategic advisory services to the Office of the Chief Resilience Officer in the design, development, and delivery of the strategy.

NATIONAL DISASTER RESILIENCE COMPETITION ACADEMIES →

CLIENTS: US DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT (HUD), THE ROCKEFELLER FOUNDATION, HR&A ADVISORS

In 2014 President Obama announced the National Disaster Resilience Competition, a $1billion program to allocate HUD disaster recovery funds to support resilience innovation. Members of the re:focus team served as subject matter experts, advisors, and facilitators for multiple regional academies to support eligible jurisdictions in developing their applications and identifying opportunities to leverage additional resources.

NYS2100 COMMISSION →

CLIENTS: THE ROCKEFELLER FOUNDATION

Superstorm Sandy devastated coastal communities, including New York City. Following the storm, NY Governor Andrew Cuomo convened the NYS 2100 Commission to provide recommendations on improving the long-term resilience of New York State. re:focus founder, Shalini Vajjhala, worked with the Rockefeller Foundation to help facilitate and coordinate the work of the commission.

LOW-CARBON CITIES INITIATIVE →

CLIENTS: WORLD BANK

As part of the early stages of the World Bank’s Low-Carbon Livable Cities Initiative, re:focus founder Shalini Vajjhala served as a consultant to the program and developed a framework for potential city competitions, including designing a tailored application process, applicant guidelines, and evaluation structure.

In theory there is no difference between theory and practice.
In practice, there is.

— Yogi Berra (attributed)