Wall Street and Money Island NJ; two opposite corners of the earth.
This week marks 29 years since I left a Wall Street firm to work on my own in the small business world. I posted a reflective piece on the mostly hard lessons learned. I still don’t care to talk much about those days but I suppose that I should.
This past weekend’s storm caused more problems here than we initially expected. It is quite noticeable that Money Island took one more hit in the long battle against rising water level and increased storm energy. The most visible impact is a loss of more than one vertical foot of beach sand on the water side of the new Bayview Road bulkhead. That beach loss was a predicted impact of the sea wall construction but seeing it happen in real life is no less shocking. The marina lost a finger dock, a load of dock lumber and of our two dock ramps need major repairs. One neighbor’s house lost a section of siding. At least two of the commercial docks need repair or replacement of their flotation. Repair costs of the damaged items we noticed are likely to be in the range of $10,000 to $20,000 even with our use of primarily volunteer and uncompensated labor.
One of the long term predictions about the effect of climate change is that the combine forces of sea level rise and increased water and air temperatures in that smaller storms like this will have a greater destructive impact on property. That seems to be the case with this recent storm Jonas.
I noticed the irony that the newer structures seemed to incur the most damage. The old decrepit and abandoned structures here seem to have survived unscathed.
We do not yet know what is caused this new dock to sink. Perhaps the air-filled floats cracked and filled with water. The floats were rebuilt in September 2015. This will likely be our most difficult and expensive repair this spring.
Flowing sand across roadways and parking areas can cause headaches.
There is more deterioration of the roadway at the Bayview Road bridge yet a tractor clearing debris drove over it today.
The snow and ice on the marsh was mostly melted by the end of the day Monday.
We figure that eventually U.S. manufacturers of amphibious vehicles will bring the price down, but you can forget about troubles with flooded roads right now for only $155,000. We definitely see a vehicle like this in the future of Money Island residents of the year 2030.
Over the past 3+ years since hurricane Sandy we’re made huge progress toward improving our ability to withstand high winds, flooding and even flowing ice. You could say it’s almost been an obsession around here. Here is a partial list of our recent projects:
replaced high electric lighting fixtures mounted on poled with lower level more protected solar powered dock lights
replaced trash dumpster with “tip-proof” elevated storm proof sealed trash and recycling kiosks
stronger signage with plywood backing
use of new corrugated roofing materials and construction techniques designed to withstand 80 mph winds
replaced commercial port-a-potty with elevated and non-tip-able toilet
stainless steel cable tether lines on movable structures and equipment
upgraded the water well and pump house to better withstand freezing and flooding
installed a water line break alarm system
constructed storm-roof crab shedding trays
replaced PVC with more flexible and freeze-proof PEX water supply lines
constructed an enclosed lumber yard
anchored buildings and floating decks to pilings with hurricane straps
anchored roofs to buildings with hurricane straps
upgraded major supporting beams from 4×4 lumber to 6×6 lumber
moved freezer and ice machine from outside deck to inside a closed structure
constructed dunes and berms
planted dune grass
encouraged growth of ground cover on empty lots so that root systems will prevent erosion
added rock on most vulnerable shorelines
entered partnership with The Nature Conservancy shoreline stabilization project.
Used oyster shell, conch shell and clam shell in strategic places to prevent erosion
Used various sized porous materials to minimize erosion from drainage in the most vulnerable spots
new methods to strengthen pilings and prevent erosion of poles and docks
added safety chains to docks
installed new quick-disconnect hardware on vulnerable finger docks
combining the use of both nails and screws for better overall strength in dock construction
upgraded dock hardware to 1/2″ galvanized
experimental use of plastic dock angle hardware for flexibility and rust resistance
reconstructed docks to be stronger and more resistant to flowing ice
replaced older pilings with stronger new poles
use a double system of rings plus chains to secure the most vulnerable floating docks (the transition dock near the ramp)
replaced older concrete septic tank lids with new sealed plastic lids
allow walkways and some decks to float in high water without causing damage
replaced storage buildings to gather and contain materials and equipment
in general, we don’t leave things laying around outside
Storm protection is an ongoing project for us but we feel confident that we’ve come a long way in the past three years.
Congratulations to Tom and Samantha and their families on the birth of Thomas Todd Pew III, born 11:55 pm last night, 7 pounds even according to his grandmother. Young Tom may be Money Island’s first 3rd generation waterman.
We expect full moon flooding on the roadways this morning 1/10/2016 and for the next few days. High tide is about 9:30. Use the tide lookup tool to check tide times and water level predictions. The roadway may be impassable for an hour or two before and after high tide.