Technology Innovations for Urban Living in the Face of COVID-19

Jun 08 2021

Through an Urban Tech Pilot program in Columbia Engineering, Professor Kyle Mandli and collaborators within Civil Engineering and IEOR, along with researchers at the Mailman School of Public Health within the National Center for Disaster Preparedness, have been researching how to best prepare for how a pandemic and the next super-storm might collide and how we might best prepare for it.

This is, of course, not theoretical. In 2020 alone, 22 natural disasters caused a billion dollars of estimated damage or more. In New York City, making decisions as to how to best evacuate and shelter people due to an incoming hurricane, while also keeping them socially distanced, is, unfortunately, often a contradictory goal. The researchers hope to find ways to mitigate this problem and other natural disasters by both considering modeling the events themselves and keeping people as distributed as possible.

Image: NYC Hurricane Evacuation Centers