Wednesday, January 15, 2014

New Rockaway boardwalk to double as a stylish marquee


Rockaway is poised to get a new marquee that will be seen from the sky. John Cori of Friends of Rockaway Beach proclaims the massive letters will be 'just like the Hollywood sign.'


Renderings from the NYC Parks Department and the NYC Economic Development Corp show what the rebuilt Rockaway Boardwalk will look like.

It may not have the bright lights of the big city, but Rockaway is poised to get a new marquee that will be seen from the sky.

Officials said the rebuilt boardwalk will feature massive letters spelling out the word Rockaway throughout the length of the path.

“It will be just like the Hollywood sign,” said John Cori of Friends of Rockaway Beach. “People will see it when they are flying into JFK Airport. It will be like New York City’s welcome sign.”

The Parks Department unveiled its final designs for the new boardwalk to the public and members of Community Board 14 on Tuesday night. The project will replace large sections of the beloved walkway destroyed by Hurricane Sandy.

The first phase of rebuilding from Beach 86 to Beach 97th street will start this spring and be ready to open by Memorial Day 2015, according to officials from the Parks Department and the NYC Economic Development Corp.

Hurricane Sandy destroyed most of the wooden sections of the boardwalk, making concrete the solid answer for future reconstruction.

TODD MAISEL/NEW YORK DAILY NEWS

Hurricane Sandy destroyed most of the wooden sections of the boardwalk, making concrete the solid answer for future reconstruction.

But the entire project - from Beach 126 to Beach 19 - will not be completed until Memorial Day 2017.


“Everyone wants to see the boardwalk as quickly as possible,” said Assemblyman Philip Goldfeder, a lifelong Rockaway resident. “But outside the time frame, I am impressed with the plan. The city has done a great job of engaging the community and determining what the needs were.”

The new boardwalk will be 40 feet wide and elevated above the 100 year flood level - different heights along the way.
Wood is giving way to sand-colored concrete accented with colored tumbled glass.

The boardwalk along Rockaway beach has been destroyed by Hurricane Sandy.

DEBBIE EGAN-CHIN/NEW YORK DAILY NEWS

The boardwalk along Rockaway beach has been destroyed by Hurricane Sandy.

It’s a concession that is hard to swallow for some residents. But even the die-hards recognize that wood is too expensive and will not survive future storms.

“I want wood more than anybody but it’s not going to last,” said Cori.

First Deputy Parks Commissioner Liam Kavanagh said the new boardwalk will “stronger, more attractive, and more resilient.”

He also said the agency will build a temporary connector to bridge destroyed boardwalk sections opening a continuous stretch of boardwalk from Beach 60th Street to Beach 19th Street for the first time since Hurricane Sandy.

Community Board 14 District Manager Jonathan Gaska said the Parks Department made a “comeback” from last summer when they put up the controversial lifeguard shacks and bathrooms.

“They did a horrendous job - they put up bathrooms we didn’t want,” he said. “After 13 meetings, they have come a long way.”

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