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10/19/2011 - Beach Replenishment Delayed

LONG BEACH TOWNSHIP — Work on the township’s portion of the Long Beach Island beach replenishment project could be delayed until the new year, federal officials confirmed Friday.

Great Lakes Dredge and Dock Company, based in Illinois, is hired to do the work, but the company is now involved in another beach replenishment project that will delay the Long Beach Island project, according to Stephen Rochette, a spokesman for the Army Corps of Engineers.

When the company finishes the first project, the Long Beach Island project will proceed.

“Our hope is that they get the equipment to Long Beach Island next and can begin work, possibly after the new year,” Rochette said.

On Sept. 29, the corps awarded a contract for the replenishment of a 26-block stretch of beach in the Brant Beach section of the township to the Great Lakes Dredge and Dock Company. The base contract calls for the placement of 1.2 million cubic yards of sand on the beach, along with the construction of dune cross-overs, sand fencing and dune grass plantings, from 31st Street south to 57th Street.

The cost is now estimated to be $16.7 million, officials said. However, the project cost could increase to $17.9 million, if more sand and work is needed to complete the replenishment properly.

Mayor Joseph Mancini said he is not concerned about the delay of the project.

“Unless we have some catastrophic type of nor’easter, we are going to be fine,” he said.

Rochette said the contract for the project assures the work will be completed in time for the summer tourism season.

“Once started, we estimate it could take about 90 days and required completion is by June 15,’’ he said.

The aim of the beach replenishment project is to increase the size of the beach and dunes in each of the towns on the barrier island, except Barnegat Light, which chose not to take part because officials there felt their beaches did not need work. Harvey Cedars and Surf City are the only two municipalities to have the work completed.

“This is a project that is needed,” Mancini said. “In the end, we don’t think that it’s going to impact our summer season.”


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