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At Aquarium, MBTA plans to fight water with water

Photo by MBTA.

The MBTA today tested "tiger dams" as a way to keep harbor water from cascading down the Long Wharf entrance to the Aquarium Blue Line stop in future nor'easters and other water-raising floods.

The portable dams are basically long tubes that are put around the entrance and then filled with water to seal out the saltier water coming down the wharf.

During past storms, such as 2018's nor'easters, the T used more traditional sandbags to try to stop the tides.

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Sounds like bullfish.

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Voting closed 7

Why weren't the headhouses designed with floor drains and sump pumps a decade ago when the station was rebuilt to handle seasonal flooding?

I know that's asking a lot since the things were already leaking in the rain when Aquarium reopened after construction, but still a major engineering oversight for a station next to the waterfront and not very high above the lunar maximum tide mark.

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Voting closed 17

Just where are you planning on pumping the water to ? the ocean ? doh....!!!

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Voting closed 6

It was built poorly for initial savings. Maintenance happens after the gov leaves. Welcome to the school of Dukakis & Salvucci

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Voting closed 4

As one of the twitter comments said, someone will take a knife to it. IIRC, this past Christmas a bunch of those inflatable snowmen, santas etc. were stabbed in some local family's display. I doubt these are much stronger and unlike air, the water will only worsen any flooding problems. Waste.

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Voting closed 4

Nobody is leaving these out round the clock for two months. They’ll be deployed as needed and put away after. It would take more than the average stupid to stab the things keeping you dry as you walk down the stairs.

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Voting closed 18

You underestimate the depths of the local stupid population.

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Voting closed 7

These aren't pool floaties or yard inflatables, dear. They are reinforced rubbery things like the military uses. They have more in common with your tire sidewalls than they do with bipolar Christmas decorations.

Pocket knife won't likely touch them - and if they are needed, you'll need hip waders or a dry suit and something far more slashy than a pocket knife. Anything designed to be deployed in a flood needs to be puncture resistant because of moving debris.

They aren't air filled, either. They are full of water.

For more information on how these have been used to repel raging floods: https://gizmodo.com/texas-man-buys-dam-online-to-protect-home-from-flood...

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Voting closed 17

Why not just run 3 rows of French drains from the building to the subway? Permanent solution to a permanent problem

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Voting closed 5

What?

French drains don't prevent flooding from 2-3 feet of seawater everywhere.

This isn't draining rain or runoff away from a building. This is an innundation issue.

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Voting closed 30

Unfortunately

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Why not build a permanent 3-foot "dam" around the entrance, with stairs and a ramp to get across it?

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Voting closed 1

The ocean will just build a 4 ft ladder.

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Voting closed 10

Had Superstorm Sandy hit us on a high tide, she would have put 6-10 feet of water in that location.

But it will be more common that a lesser surge will send aquatic greetings to the Blue Line. At least these tubes can vary in size and aren't all that pricey (the guy in Texas surrounded his entire house and garage for $8500)

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Voting closed 3

I assume there's some analysis of how high a surge they expect how often.

If the current permanent structure would be inundated on a regular basis, I think they should build a permanent dam. They can still use the inflatables for unusual storms bigger than that.

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The Sea will reclaim what was once hers.

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Federal and State entities produced this assessment after Superstorm Sandy's surge missed innundating us when the storm hit on a low tide: https://www.mass.gov/files/documents/2018/08/09/MassDOT_FHWA_Climate_Cha...

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Voting closed 3