Groundbreaking Coming for Barnegat Light Park Pavilion

Sep 20, 2017

Groundbreaking should start soon for the pavilion on the cleared ground of the former Barnegat Light Coast Guard housing lot between West Sixth and Seventh streets.

“We’re going to award the masonry bid tonight, which will allow us to start,” Borough Councilman Ed Wellington said at the council’s Sept. 13 pre-meeting caucus. “We’re going to be moving forward right away.”

Reinforced concrete footing, ramp, and piling caps will get the project underway, now that the engineering phase has been hurdled.

End-of-season wrap-ups comprised other announcements at the meeting. Lifeguards made 119 rescues as of Sept. 10. With rip currents pervasive, 39 swimmers had been rescued the month previous to that date, and the beach had been red-flagged six days due to surf conditions.

Trying something new this year, lifeguards stayed on the beach until 6:30 p.m. six nights, Councilwoman Dottie Reynolds said at the meeting. “It was very successful. On beautiful beach days on the weekends, the guards were out there a little longer.”

Beach badge revenue was $10,000 below the previous summer, a preliminary report shows.

The dog park on West 10th Street continued to draw dog owners from outside the borough. Dog park passes totaled 265 bought by out-of-town residents and 115 given to property owners in the borough.

Little other action transpired, although council discussion took place on a few other topics.

Location of water meter pits is moving along, council members said. Toward the borough’s plan to comply with state water conservation measures and install water meters that can be read digitally, property owners have been asked to attempt to find their water meter pits, which technically lie on borough property but in many cases have been covered over the years by the homeowners’ pavers or landscaping.

Homeowners can contact borough hall for advice on the general area where they may be found. Public Works Superintendent Ed Sulecki “will give you a blue line and you should be able to find it,” said Councilman Michael Spark.

Installation will be the next phase, but homeowners can save the borough money, and their yards some destruction, if they can find the meter pits themselves.

“Locating the meters was the first thing,” Spark said, to a question of how the project is moving.

To a question from the audience on why the “onus” was on the homeowners, Mayor Kirk Larson said, “We are asking for your help if you can. We want you to uncover them for us, or we’ll have to find it. We’ll come in with a backhoe.

“We don’t want to have to rip up your yard.

“We’ve been doing pretty good at finding them,” Larson said, adding with a grin, “People are treating it like it’s an Easter egg hunt or something.”

Resident Bob Dole, of 13 East 17th St., again raised the question of whether the council has moved toward a decision to raise the building height limit over the current 30 feet. He cited “vulnerability of low-lying areas,” as underscored by recent hurricanes.

“We haven’t talked about it since last time,” the mayor answered, saying summer has been busy. He noted that during a prior taxpayers association meeting, a show of hands was overwhelmingly in favor of keeping the height limit the same.

The topic didn’t progress any further at the council meeting.

— Maria Scandale

mariascandale@thesandpaper.net

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