CARTERET — Mayor Dan Reiman and Parks Commissioner Vinnie Bellino have announced that $1.7 million in reconstruction work at Waterfront Park will begin in May 2013. The damages which resulted from Hurricane Sandy will be partially reimbursed through Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) relief funding.
According to borough engineers, repairs will include new gangways from the pier to the newly reconstructed boat ramp, in addition to the repair of asphalt walkways, enhancement of open space areas, installation of a stage at the gazebo area, rewiring of the site lighting to a fully operational condition, replacement of damaged landscaping and other miscellaneous repairs including the repair and re-decking of the Veterans Memorial Fishing Pier. The 18-hole miniature golf course which was completely destroyed will be expanded and rebuilt.
Earlier this year, Reiman announced that the Carteret Office of Emergency Management and Department of Engineering issued a report assessing the damages from Hurricane Sandy to public and private property. The heaviest damages to municipal parks took place at Waterfront Park, where the storm surge produced up to 10 feet of flooding. The boat-launch, pier, miniature golf course, fencing and walkways took severe damage, totaling over $2 million.
Other damaged public resources include Carteret Park, Civic Center Park, the Carteret Public Library, and the Borough Recreation Building. Total damages to public areas and facilities alone have been estimated at $7.1 million.
Reiman said, “While we have been grossly dissatisfied with FEMA’s response time and inability to directly address the challenges faced by the Borough immediately following the storm, we are glad that they have finally begun to recognize the financial burdens placed on Carteret by Superstorm Sandy. In the coming months, we will see Waterfront Park returned to its original beauty, along with long-needed enhancements that will make it an even greater public treasure for residents and visitors to enjoy.”
“Waterfront Park was the hardest hit of our recreational facilities,” added Bellino. “As such we are glad that the damages that resulted from Hurricane Sandy will finally be addressed, and that we will be able to continue with our ongoing Waterfront redevelopment.”
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