Andrew and Fairchild Gardens

Robert Knox knox at
Fri Aug 28 13:37:07 EST 1992

As a small footnote, compared to billions of dollars of 
destruction in S. Florida, Fairchild Gardens was within
the area of severe damage from Hurricane Andrew (in think
in Coral Gables).  Anyone have information on how Fairchild
and its world-renown living collection of palms weathered
the storm?

An unrelated query:  Though it may seem insensitive to
consider this issue with tens of thousands of Floridians
facing dehydration, food shortages, and huge personal 
losses, I'll raise the question now anyway.  What is the 
wisdom of publicly funding rebuilding on a fragile coastal
zone, especially as we move into the more intense portion
of the long-term hurricane cycle for Atlantic hurricanes?  
Are all citizens being asked to accept and cover risks 
from individual decisions to build on ocean shores?  
(Hurricanes Hugo, Bob, and Andrew are believed to represent
a return to a high frequency of powerful, destructive 
storms hitting the U.S. East Coast, last experienced in 
the 1950's and early 1960's.)

Note: I am *not* questioning the vital immediate need to
provide water, food, shelter, and basic services to the
people and region, as quickly as possible.  Rather the 
question is about federal coverage of uninsured losses, 
subsidized loans, etc.  

- Bob Knox
- Biospheric Sciences Branch, Code 923.0
- NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD 20771 
- knox at      | BITNET: knox at ricevm1
Maryland has its own ocean-side heavy development, at 
Ocean City, on a barrier island next to an inlet and harbor 
cut during the last major hurricane cycle!  There's a 
pretty good chance we'll be asked--through taxes and
insurance premiums--to fund rebuilding all those hotels 
and condos some time in the next 20 years.

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