The completion of an over 20-year project finally means a more resilient Coney Island, thanks to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE).
On Monday, June 13, Col. David Caldwell, commander of USACE, New York District was joined by Senator Charles Schumer, Congressmember Jerrold Nadler and Congressmember Hakeem Jeffries in Coney Island to announce the completion of the $25 million Coney Island Shore Protection Project – a plan that focused on increasing resiliency and reducing the risks coastal storms pose to residents and businesses in the area.
“The Sea Gate Reach portion of this project not only marks the completion of this shore protection effort, it ensures that Coney Island Beach will be stronger and retain its sand for longer,” said Caldwell, “The Coney Island community, like so many others, experienced major devastation, flooding and beach erosion during Hurricane Sandy. This project strengthens Coney Island’s resiliency, makes it more sustainable and reduces risks associated with severe storm events.”
According to USACE, the first phase of the project – started over 20 years ago – involved the widening and elevating of certain parts of the Coney Island beach from Corbin Place to West 37th Street. Since then, beach replenishment, groin work and other area work was performed to ensure that Coney Island is ready for a possible storm. USACE also placed 70,000 cubic yards of sand at Sea Gate Beach in this last phase.
Additionally, to minimize sand erosion and reduce damage to homes and business in the event of another storm, four new T-groin structures (each one the size of a football field) were built and the Norton Point Dike and the West 37th Street Terminal Groin were reinforced with bedding stone.
“The completion of the Coney Island coastal protection project is great news and will provide desperately-needed security against future storms and floods for the people of Coney Island and Sea Gate,” said Schumer. “We worked long and hard to secure the federal funding for this essential effort – with Congressman Nadler leading the charge and Congressman Jeffries helping to bring it across the finish line. Making Coney Island’s waterfront neighborhoods and beaches more resilient and secure was a very worthy effort, and I am proud to be a part of this terrific accomplishment.”
“The completion of this $25 million project marks a critical step toward our collective effort to bolster storm preparation in Coney Island and across New York City,” added Jeffries. “Superstorm Sandy may have damaged many of the homes and businesses in neighborhoods throughout the district I represent, but it failed to dampen our resolve and commitment to rebuilding our community.”
The project is federally funded through the Disaster Relief Appropriations Act of 2013, the Sandy Relief Bill, according to USACE and future phases of the project will include the placement of 30,000 cubic yards of sand every 10 years.