New York City Faces Up to $260 Billion in Hurricane Damage

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As hurricane season begins, so does the debate about how large storms may be, where they may hit and what the effects of the wind and water will be. A new study by CoreLogic forecasts that storms could cause as much as $260 billion in damage to the New York City area and costs could reach $1.5 trillion nationwide.

According to the CoreLogic researchers who released its 2016 Storm Surge Report:

[M]ore than 6.8 million homes on the Atlantic and Gulf coasts are at potential risk of damage from hurricane storm surge inundation with a total reconstruction cost value of more than $1.5 trillion. In addition to the number of homes at risk, the analysis also provides the reconstruction cost value (RCV), which is the cost to completely rebuild a property in case of damage, including labor and materials by geographic location, assuming a worst-case scenario at 100-percent destruction.

By way of comparison, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) estimated the cost of Hurricane Sandy at $67.6 billion.

Under the circumstances set out by CoreLogic, the RCV of homes in Florida could be as high as $535 billion, ahead of second place Louisiana at $184 billion.

At the city level, after New York City, the Miami RCV risk is $143 billion.

The report did offer a small piece of good news:

Using more advanced and granular data than in previous years, the 2016 analysis shows an increase from 2015 in the overall number of homes at risk of storm surge as well as an increase in the reconstruction value of these homes. Despite the overall increases, the 2016 analysis shows a decrease in the most extreme category for both the number and value of homes at risk.

So, the tens of billions this year may be slightly better than the tens of billions last year.

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Rank Metropolitan Area Total Properties Potentially Affected by All Categories of Hurricane Total RCV (U.S. Dollars)
1 Miami, FL 780,482 $143,949,383,422
2 New York, NY 719,373 $260,195,234,842
3 Tampa, FL 454,746 $80,627,283,072
4 New Orleans, LA 390,806 $94,043,948,226
5 Virginia Beach, VA-NC 385,084 $83,472,805,334
6 Cape Coral, FL 306,953 $61,989,183,591
7 Houston, TX 280,112 $51,868,761,737
8 Bradenton, FL 250,615 $47,331,097,845
9 Naples, FL 180,919 $43,178,509,775
10 Jacksonville, FL 166,709 $35,807,031,655
11 Philadelphia, PA 165,940 $31,884,862,628
12 Charleston, SC 145,356 $36,193,547,227
13 Boston, MA 129,167 $38,480,093,842
14 Myrtle Beach, SC 123,645 $21,588,181,602
15 Lafayette, LA 119,942 $25,831,094,601
Total 4,599,849 $1,056,441,019,399