Revised Plan Issued to Repair Terminal Groin in Holgate

Jan 09, 2019
Photo by: Ryan Morrill

Long Beach Township’s project to repair the terminal groin in Holgate is moving forward, with some revision from the original plan. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers last month approved the municipality’s modified permit application, which includes replacement of the groin’s steel sheet piling component only.

“We’re calling this ‘phase one,’” Mayor Joseph Mancini said Monday. “We have the permit, we went out to bid, and the work is set to begin around Jan. 21. It should be a six-week project.” It will be undertaken by contractor R.E. Pierson Construction Co.

“The only inconvenience will be that the parking lot at the end of Holgate will be closed for safety reasons,” Mancini noted, as there will be a lot of equipment stored in that area. The project site is located on the oceanfront beach at the southern terminus of Long Beach Boulevard, just south of Cleveland Avenue.

The township’s original permit application included the removal of the existing terminal groin – made of wood and stone – and the construction of a new, larger groin, using steel sheeting, core stone and armor stone, including re-use of existing stone.

In the revised plan, in which just the steel sheeting is replaced, “the sheeting would be in the same location, configuration, length and depth as was shown on the prior plans,” said Edward E. Bonner of the USACE, Philadelphia District. “As such, there would be 305 linear feet of steel sheet piling extending perpendicular to the shoreline (from the existing wood bulkhead). A total of 163 sheets, 22.5 inches wide, would be driven by vibratory hammer to a depth of -30 feet NAVD88. The top elevation would be 10 feet NAVD88 for the first 160 feet, and eight feet NAVD88 for the last (outer) 145 feet. There would be no stone placement, besides the potential movement or rehandling of existing stone that may be necessary for sheet pile installation.”

Phase two of the project, Mancini pointed out, would comprise the placement of rocks around the groin. For that, though, the municipality needs separate permits.

The NJ Department of Environmental Protection issued authorization to the municipality for the proposed work on Dec. 19, 2018. That authorization included a Section 401 Water Quality Certificate, as well as concurrence that the proposed work is consistent with the New Jersey Coastal Zone Management Program.

“In response to our public notice of the originally-proposed groin project,” Bonner noted, “we received comments stating concerns about possible effects on waves for surfing. Additional concerns were stated regarding potential impacts to endangered species in the wildlife refuge situated to the south of the groin.

“Given that the length of the new proposed groin is no longer than the existing one, we do not expect to see any adverse effects on waves or surfing. With regard to the federally listed species and habitat to the south, this office has consulted with USFWS pursuant to Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act. The Service concurred with our determination that the proposed work is not likely to adversely affect federally listed species under their jurisdiction. Our consultation included the development of permit conditions to protect listed species (piping plover, sea beach amaranth and red knot).”

The office also coordinated and consulted with the National Marine Fisheries Service regarding essential fish habitat, and the service concurred that no conservation recommendations are required. The township will monitor the area to the south of the proposed groin, and results of this monitoring will be used to assist in planning any future work and to determine if any collective actions are required for the current design.

“The Corps finds that the project as proposed would not have unacceptable environmental or social effects, nor would it be contrary to the public interest,” Bonner stated. “Furthermore, I have determined that a public hearing would not generate any additional information relative to my permit decision on the project. Therefore, such a proceeding is not warranted.”

Additional information concerning this permit application may be obtained by calling James Boyer at 215-656-5826 or email James.N.Boyer@usace.army.mil.

— Juliet Kaszas-Hoch

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