“The siding that had wrapped around a stairway providing access to the elevated house was gone, and so were the stairs. But that was by design: The family’s architect used breakaway walls that would tear free without ripping off any more of the structure. Now there was just a gaping hole and part of a handrail, leaving the five-bedroom, five-bathroom house accessible only by ladder.” But once you climbed that ladder, the house was intact and in pretty good shape. This was in stark contrast to the other homes in Mexico Beach in the Florida Panhandle, which felt the full brunt of Hurricane Michael’s wrath. How did the home known by its owners as the Sand Palace stand, “majestic amid the apocalyptic wreckage, the last surviving beachfront house on his block?” It wasn’t just built to code. It was built for climate change. Among the Ruins of Mexico Beach Stands One House, Built for the Big One.

+ This could give us a glimpse into the future of building for those who choose to live in vulnerable coastal cities. Unless, as President Trump suggests, climate change will “change back again.”