Wednesday, February 21, 2024

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Ordinance Would Require Bayfront Homeowners to Raise Bulkheads

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By Shay Roddy

WILDWOOD CREST – Mayor Don Cabrera said that at the end of 2020, or in early 2021, he expects the borough to pass an ordinance requiring bayfront homeowners to raise their bulkheads to 8 feet, at their expense, to prevent flooding.
Bayfront homes, between Cresse Avenue and Rambler Road, a one-mile stretch, would be affected by the potential ordinance. They fall in an area known as “the triangle,” identified as a problematic zone in the recent Flood Mitigation and Storm Sewer Master Plan, assembled by Engineer Mark DeBlasio. The 8 feet would be off the base flood elevation.
“There are some (existing bulkheads) that are 4-5 feet, and there are some 6 feet, so they all need to be brought up,” Cabrera told the Herald. “We’re not looking to hurt anybody. We just eventually are going to want compliance. We may give them four or five years to come into compliance. Those details haven’t been worked out yet.”
Cabrera said the borough doesn’t own the bulkheads behind homes. They are the responsibility of private property owners, which is why they’d be responsible to pay for what would be mandatory construction.
“A lot of the property owners have voluntarily said to us they want to see this. They recognize they have a part in stopping the flooding,” Cabrera said. “They don’t want to do it until the borough does their part, so it’s like one big happy partnership. Private property and public have to come together.”
The town would be paying to raise the public bulkheads in the same stretch. Cabrera said he doesn’t know how much it would cost bayfront homeowners.
“It depends,” Cabrera said, explaining the variable height would affect the cost to bring bulkheads into compliance.
Cabrera said more information would be provided at future public meetings.

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