Date of Award

Spring 6-4-2022

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Architecture (MArch)



First Advisor

Jess Myers

Second Advisor

Jacqueline Shaw


As a result of climate change, there has been an increase in flooding all over the world, especially in coastal areas. The coastal city of Miami, Florida is about seventeen feet above sea level at its highest point, with much of the city at five feet or less above sea level. This study is focused in the neighborhood of Brickell. The neighborhood is on the coast and thus acts as a barrier between the Atlantic and other neighborhoods in Miami. The neighborhood has also been the center of a lot of recent growth and development and has become a cultural center. Brickell already experiences flooding when there are large storms, which are becoming more frequent. With a two foot sea level rise, which is projected to happen before the year 2060, about half of the Brickell neighborhood will experience 70 days or more of flooding per year. Despite knowing this, the population of the neighborhood is growing, and it has become the most densely populated neighborhood in Miami. This project proposes a harm reduction strategy for those choosing to live in this, and other areas, where there will be inevitable flooding.

This project looks at both vernacular and contemporary precedents of stilted buildings to determine the best structure to support high density buildings in this context. The proposal works with Miami-Dade county’s current resiliency strategies to integrate stilted building into the urban fabric. The buildings function as apartments or office space during dry conditions, but are outfitted for emergency situations as well.

This proposal is not a solution to flooding, nor is it a plan for living with water. It is a harm reduction strategy.


View exhibition online: Stephanie Gottlieb, Rising to the Occasion

Included in

Architecture Commons



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