A prime stretch of the Queens beach will re-open this summer after a $10.7M effort to replenish its shore
Rockaway Beach is making a comeback.
A prime stretch of the Queens beach will reopen with the rest of the coastline this summer after its shrinking shore was replenished with mounds of sand, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Tuesday.
“This a great day for New York city because you can see with your own eyes that change has come and this beach is back and better than ever,” de Blasio said at a boardwalk news conference.
The city anticipates the strip between Beach 92 and Beach 105 streets to be fully revived next week after a $10.7 million effort spearheaded by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the city to dredge the East Rockaway inlet and use the excess sand to replenish eroded portions of the beach, according to the mayor’s office.
The seaside span was shuttered last summer after the beach suffered heavy erosion following a series of powerful storms. A sand dune added to protect Rockaway from after Hurricane Sandy also shrunk the beach, which made it too narrow for visitors to safely soak in the rays and for lifeguards to manage the crowds crammed onto the shore.
“Last year was painful for everybody,” de Blasio said. “It was not an easy decision to have to close off a section of the beach last year, but we had to do it for safety reasons.”
To restore the beach, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers dredge 348,000 cubic yards of sand from the East Rockaway inlet and pumped that sand onto the beaches. The massive effort, which began in April, not only allows sun-screen lathered swimmers to make a splash but provides sorely needed storm protections from future tempests, said a colonel with the Army Corps.
“Our crews worked 24/7 to get this project done because it’s vital to the residents of this community,” said Col. Thomas Asbery of the U.S. Army Corps New York district. “Our efforts to beneficially reuse the dredged material to restore this section of the Rockaway’s heavily eroded shorefront will provide additional coastal storm risk reduction benefits and increase resiliency in advance of hurricane season.”
Rockaway and other city beaches will re-open on Saturday, May 25 and remain open through Sunday, September 8.
Rockaway Beach will fully re-open this summer