Water threatening waterfront development

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Boston’s effort to redevelop its waterfront is running into a major obstacle: Water.

From Downtown to East Boston to Dorchester, rising sea levels are posing an increasingly urgent threat to developers’ plans to build hundreds of homes, offices, stores and parks along Boston Harbor, with many acknowledging the need to reinforce their properties in case of flooding from another Hurricane Sandy-like storm.

Many building owners are already preparing to face the floodwaters. At Fan Pier, developer Joe Fallon has moved critical electrical systems higher in his buildings. Nearby, developers of a residential tower at Pier 4 have purchased special flood barriers to guard doors and garage entrances. And the newly-built Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital in Charlestown is surrounded by protective walls and landscaping buffers.

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