Bonnet Island Residents Want Railroad Avenue Raised

Jul 25, 2018

Some residents of Bonnet Island, at the easternmost edge of Stafford Township, are sick and tired of dealing with tidal flooding on roadways. Those who live along Railroad Avenue, in particular, have come before the mayor and council asking for something to be done – namely, raising the surface of the roadway several inches to disperse the water.

Architect and Railroad Avenue resident Gym Wilson was the first to the lectern at a recent township council meeting and distributed photos to show the extent of the problem from different views and at varying tide stages.

The Railroad Avenue in question (not the one on Mallard Island) is a 450-foot stretch of road that slopes from both ends with a catch basin in the center. “We all have to drive through water,” Wilson said. There is no other way in or out.

His proposal was to add 6 or 7 inches of blacktop to fill in the center of the road and feather it out to zero at either end.

In 2003, he said, he came to the town with the same problem, but nothing was done about it, and now it’s worse.

Mayor John Spodofora said the town has “already set our budget for paving projects this year” and noted that dispersing the water will only push it onto other properties.

Administrator Jim Moran said cautiously that it might be doable this year, if some money can be squeezed from the paving project due to start after Labor Day in Ocean Acres.

He added that residents along Railroad Avenue would be responsible for getting their own driveways raised to meet the road surface and dealing with any other side effects or consequences. New or worsened drainage problems could also result.

“We know what you’re going through, and we will do what we can to address it,” Spodofora said.  —V.F.

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