Written by Town of North Hempstead Supervisor Judi Bosworth Thursday, 15 May 2014 00:00
The Town of North Hempstead’s beautiful shoreline is among our town’s most valued environmental and recreational resources. As our waterfront meanders from Little Neck Bay to Manhasset Bay to Hempstead Harbor and out into the Long Island Sound, none of us are ever too far from a scenic waterfront view.
Manhasset Bay and Hempstead Harbor are among the prime destinations in the town for residents to enjoy the waterfront. North Hempstead’s Town Dock in Port Washington is frequented by scores of residents annually, who moor their boats here or enjoy a stroll along the water.
Thousands visit North Hempstead Beach Park each summer for entertaining town events and to experience the sun and the sand.
As supervisor, one of my priorities is to clean up, revitalize and transform these and other areas along our shorelines so that they can be enjoyed as recreational destinations and appreciated for their natural beauty. To this end, I have been working diligently with federal and state representatives to secure the funding we need to make this a reality.
Superstorm Sandy took quite a toll on our North Shore waterfront, leaving damaged seawalls and bulkheads, and depositing a large amount of sediment buildup in our ponds, bays and harbors. That is why last month I joined U.S. Senator Charles Schumer at our town dock in Port Washington as we called for federal funding from FEMA and HUD for key rebuilding projects in the wake of Sandy.
In order to move forward with transforming our waterfront into one of the most vibrant and exciting destinations in the Northeast, we need to make the necessary infrastructure improvements first, including repairing failing bulkheads, installing flood prevention measures at North
Hempstead Beach Park, performing aquatic sand removal, and making necessary structural repairs to the town dock. The completion of these projects will help safeguard our communities from future catastrophic events, and will bring an economic boost to local businesses and tourism, while preserving our environment.
This potential federal funding will work in tandem with our 2014-2018 capital plan, which was introduced last month at a town board work session. All residents had the opportunity to attend the meeting at town hall or see the meeting streamed on the town’s website in an effort to make our plans for the future more transparent. The approved capital plan will be posted on our website as well. A significant part of our capital plan relates to infrastructure and clean water initiatives for our waterways and ponds. Proposed projects like the aquatic sand removal and remediation of Roslyn Pond will have a long-lasting positive impact on the community and our water quality for generations to come.
The extension of the scenic Hempstead Harbor Trail is another part of our capital plan. This vision, which originated with May Newburger and continued with Jon Kaiman, is now going to be expanded into a 1¼-mile trail along Hempstead Harbor. We will create a viable walking and jogging trail for residents here in North Hempstead. It is our goal to eventually network this trail together with the Baywalk Trail in Port Washington to create a continuous path along the North Shore.
These trail projects are all steps in the right direction that will lead to a vital, healthy waterfront for all to enjoy.