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Parkland Tract Eyed by CMCo Would Satisfy Land Used for Atlantic Cape Campus

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By Al Campbell

CREST HAVEN – A 24.68-acre parcel of land in Court House, at 109 Magnolia Dr., would provide 24.68 acres of parkland, according to a resolution passed Jan. 26 by the Board of County Commissioners.  

That tract would satisfy the county’s obligation to the state Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to maintain preserved land since it built the local branch of the Atlantic Cape Community College on ground preserved for recreation and conservation purposes. It is about a mile from the college campus. 

According to the resolution: “Due to the preservation restrictions on the campus site, the proposal to construct a college campus at this location needed to be approved by the… (DEP), which approval was granted contingent upon the county dedicating 12.3 acres of replacement parkland that offered comparable recreational and ecological value as the campus site.” 

The owner of the parcel “has expressed his interest to sell the replacement parkland to the county,” the resolution states.  

Municipal records indicate the land’s value is $375,700. There are no buildings on the land. No sale price was listed in the resolution.  

“Professionals have evaluated the replacement parkland and determined that it has comparable ecological and recreational value as the campus site,” the document states.  

Seek Vaccination Site 

Intending to vaccinate 70,000 Cape May County residents with Covid shots by Memorial Day, the board needs multiple sites and agreed one of those would be Lower Cape May Regional facilities. 

The county noted the school district’s Field House “meets site requirements and is an ideal location to operate a Covid vaccination site.” 

The resolution also noted that while it remains the state’s responsibility to distribute the vaccine, to date, the county has received “a limited but steady supply of the vaccine.”  

Departmental Changes 

By the passage of two other resolutions, the Department of Engineering was created, and the Department of Public Works assumed the Road Department, Bridge Department, Department of Traffic and Maintenance, and Department of Traffic and Electric. The effective date on both resolutions was Jan. 1, 2021.  

County Engineer Robert Church was named head of the Engineering Department. Nancy Mauro is Public Works administrator.  

All engineers and support staff are in the Engineering Department. Staff assigned to the other consolidated departments were transferred to Public Works.  

Contracts Awarded 

The board approved a $593,334 contract to Zone Striping Inc., of Glassboro, to provide centerline rumble strips on certain county roads this year. The firm was the lowest of three bidders whose packages were submitted Jan. 7. 

WSP USA Inc., with an office in Newark, was awarded a $49,625 modification to its engineering services contract for the Cape May Bikeway Network expansion. The reason cited was additional work performed. 

South State Inc., of Bridgeton, received a $694,750 contract for the Seashore Road (CR 626) missing bicycle link improvement in Lower Township.  

The firm also received a $244,145 change order for work for Roosevelt Boulevard (CR 623) over Crook Horn Creek Bridge deck rehabilitation. The bridge links Upper Township and Ocean City.  

RTW Construction Inc., of Southampton, was awarded a $661,125 contract for drainage improvements in Middle and Lower townships. The firm was the lowest of nine bidders, whose packages were submitted Dec. 9, 2020. 

Securus Technologies LLCwas awarded a contract to provide web-based video visits for inmates at the county Correctional Facility. The two-year contract has three additional one-year options, commencing Jan. 26. 

Open Space Projects 

Planning Director Leslie Gimeno gave the board a review of 13 Open Space projects that were submitted for the latest round. Jan. 26 was the start of the 45-day public comment period on those projects. 

Clem MulliganSports Complex, in Villas – There will be a multi-purpose field, hockey rink, replacement of walking path, and multi-purpose building.  

The total cost is $2.24 million, with Open Space funding of $1.23 million. 

Historic Preservation: 

Historic ColdSpring Village Focuses on the exterior renovation of five buildings.  

The total project is $31,500, with Open Spaces funds of $18,900 and matching funds of $12,600. 

Naval AirStation Wildwood– Roof replacement on the 1942 structure: A phased roof repair, removing present material and replacing it with corrugated steel and R-30 insulation.  

The project’s cost is $660,000, with Open Space funding of $240,000. 

A separate project, for the restoration of the second floor for exhibits, would cost $129,700, with Open Space funds of $77,820 and matching funds of $51,880. 

Mid-AtlanticCenter for the Arts and Humanities – Exterior restoration of buildings.  

Total is $211,000, with Open Space funds of $66,000. 

Franklin Street School, Cape May – Built in 1927 as a school for the African American community, a collaborative project between the city, county Library Commission, the county, and several community organizations. It will include a community center,  new library, and  place for arts and culture programs.  

Total cost is $8 million, with Open Space funds to focus on exterior preservation and restoration of $240,000. 

Woodbine Eco-Park Upgrade the creative placemaking elements over the 25-acre parcel.  

Total cost is $201,060, with Open Space funding of $183,060. 

Three Middle Township projects, with various funding, including: 

Railroad Avenue Park – Redevelopment, signage, benches, and elements for placemaking recommended.  

Total project is $193,631, with $193,631 from Open Space.  

Avalon Manor Fishing Pier – Partly funded through Open Space to implement the placemaking plan with benches, bike racks, lighting, and signage.  

Total cost is $28,100, with Open Space funding of $24,600. 

Ockie Wisting Park – The request for creative placemaking includes banner poles, lighting, site furnishings, and signage to include the regional bike path.  

Total cost is $230,175, with Open Space funds of $220,175. 

Beesley’s PointPark, Bikeway, and Pedestrian Gateway – Since the park will be a demonstration for similar projects throughout the county, it includes new parking area, signs, a pavilion, boardwalk path, restrooms, and beach shade structure.  

Total cost is $1.3 million, with Open Space funding of $896,000. 

Dennis Townshipconstructed its part of the regional trail system, which runs from the Middle Township border on the south to South Seaville, and crosses Route 83. It would include benches, bike racks, signs, and litter receptacles.  

Total cost is $41,000, with Open Space funding of $40,500. 

Avalon Bay Park Marina, on Ocean Drive, is a public marina with kayak and boat launching. The project will make it more flood resilient by raising parking area and shoreline enhancements.  

The total project cost is $4.7 million, with Open Space funding of $1.1 million. 

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