Two long-awaited infrastructure projects are set to commence along the bayfront next month. When complete, these projects will reportedly result in better flood protection for Long Beach community members and infrastructure and will improve the health of the back bays.
The Flood Protection Project will see the construction of approximately 2,500 linear feet of steel bulkhead along the bayfront. It will be from the municipal boat launch at National Boulevard to the Long Beach Tennis Center on Monroe Boulevard.
The project also includes the construction of a force main pipe to remove flood waters from the city’s drainage system, as well as the cleanup and enhancement of Water Street. This project will try to help mitigate flooding in some of the city’s most vulnerable neighborhoods and serve to safeguard the water, wastewater and power the facilities that keep Long Beach functioning.
This project is fully funded by the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services. City Spokesman John McNally said it is expected to be completed within 18 months.
“One project, the bulk heading project, is just under $40 million,” McNally said. “The other project is more than half a billion dollars. The Long Beach portion is just north of $200 million.”
The Long Beach portion of the larger Bay Park Conveyance Project will start to be underway as well. The project will move treated water from the South Shore Water Reclamation Facility in East Rockaway to the Cedar Creek Water Pollution Control Plant outfall pipe. The plant currently discharges about 50 million gallons of water into Reynolds Channel each day.
The treated water will be conveyed by the construction of a two-mile-long force main from the water reclamation facility to an existing aqueduct underneath Sunrise Highway, rehabilitation of a seven-mile stretch of the aqueduct and construction of a nearly two-mile-long force main.
The Long Beach portion involves the decommissioning of the city’s wastewater treatment plant and converting it to a pump station that will send the city’s sewage to the Water Reclamation Facility for treatment. According to the city, this project will eliminate about 75 million gallons a day of treated sewage from being discharged into the back bays, which will greatly improve water quality, the natural ecosystem and storm resiliency.
The entire project is estimated to cost $513 million, with funding coming from federal, state, county and city sources. The Long Beach portion of the project is currently expected to be complete by October 2025, McNally said.
During the projects, some access to several city recreational facilities will be restricted or prohibited. City facilities impacted will include the skate park, boat ramp, kayak rental, bocce court and dog run.
Access to the parking lot by these areas will also be subject to closure effective September 5. Once the street and lot are closed, access to the skate park will be limited to the recreation center parking lot on Magnolia Avenue until full closure is necessary at some point in 2024. Access to all other facilities is expected to be restricted until the projects are complete in October 2025.