OCEAN CITY — The city’s transportation center reopened last week after several months of repairs to the 118-year-old structure.
The building at 10th Street and Haven Avenue was closed for three months while crews renovated the interior and exterior of the building, including the turret on top of the building, according to Mayor Jay Gillian.
In his weekly letter to residents, Gillian wrote on Friday that a $501,000 New Jersey Historic Trust grant funded most of the work.
Designs for the work cost about $35,000, and the job itself cost about $484,000, according to public information officer Doug Bergen.
“It was damaged in (Hurricane) Sandy,” Bergen said. “I think there were temporary repairs made to reopen it, but this is restoring it historically and functionally.”
According to the New Jersey Historic Trust, the work included the reconstruction of a Queen Anne-style turret with a conical roof, which they say was on the original building. The center, built in 1898, served as a railroad station until the early 1980s. It is now a New Jersey Transit bus station.
Gillian also provided updates on the following projects:
The boardwalk in front of the Ocean City Music Pier has new decking and is open for access from Moorlyn Terrace in time for the city’s annual First Night gala on Dec. 31. An upgraded section of outfall pipe is buried under the sand at Eighth Street, and pilings are in place for a section that will reconnect the Music Pier to the northern end of the boardwalk, he said. The entire project to reconstruct the section of the boardwalk between Eighth and 10th street is set to be finished by the end of March, Gillian said.
Work to rebuild the 29th Street firehouse at 29th and West Avenue is still on schedule to finish by Memorial Day, Gillian said. Crews recently laid a foundation and metal frame on the site. Earlier this year, City Council approved a $2.1 million contract with Straga Brothers, Inc. of Glassboro to demolish and replace the old flood-damaged firehouse with a new two-story station.
Trucks continue to haul dredge material away from the city’s disposal facility off Roosevelt Boulevard to make room for new dredging projects in Ocean City’s lagoons and back bay, Gillian said. The project there is one of several in the planning or concept stages. The city has worked with the engineering firm Act Engineers on dredging projects since the summer of 2015.
“Taking into consideration feedback from a recent town hall meeting, the city continues to seek a way to use alternative dewatering technology to provide a substantial 2017 program. This work will help protect the safety of everybody who uses the bay and help preserve property values throughout Ocean City,” Gillian wrote.
Gillian also noted the city’s recent purchase of the property that formerly held a BP gas station at the Ninth Street gateway. He said negotiations to buy the neighboring Getty Station at the corner of Ninth Street and Bay Avenue are ongoing.
He also said work to lay down sand on the site is underway at the old BP property.
“They’re getting the site ready to be landscaped,” Bergen said. “As with anything we acquire, we’d like to elevate it a little bit.”
The city seeks money from Cape May County’s open space program to help fund both projects, Bergen said. He could not say when officials expect to get an answer from the county.