2013-07-26 / Front Page

Boardwalk RFP Issued

Nine months after Sandy shattered or lifted the boardwalk away from the stanchions it rested on, the City is now seeking proposals for design and construction of 4.7 miles of new boardwalk, from Beach 20th street to Beach 126th Street.

The City, through the Economic Development

Corporation (EDC), has issued a Request for Proposals (RFP) and set short term deadlines to get the process moving. The deadline for submissions is August 14th. It is expected the City will announce a bid winner in short fashion because the RFP states that September 1st is the beginning date of the contract. The RFP allows for the project to run for 25 months. Construction is expected to begin before the end of this year.

With the 25 month contract, a completed boardwalk, therefore, may not arrive until the fall of 2015. Until a bidder is announced, it is impossible to project what will be completed by when. And, it’s premature to consider other particulars, such as whether certain sections will open before others.

Although the language is a bit fuzzy, it seems concrete will replace wood. The RFP says proposals should include plans for the “removal of sections of original timber boardwalks, ramps and stairs with new structurally rated concrete components.”

As for what the City is looking for, the RFP offers only broad guidelines: The Consultant shall provide Engineering and Design Services related to the repair of damage to the Rockaway Beach boardwalk caused by Hurricane Sandy which may include the incorporation of seawalls, dunes and other protective structures which are more resilient and able to withstand storm and tidal forces which will impact the coastline in future years.

It is possible the boardwalk will have to be elevated in some sections. The RFP states the boardwalk should be 3 feet higher than the 100 year flood elevation. This height requirement can vary depending upon the sea level at particular stretches of beach.

The scope of the project only goes as far west as Beach 126th Street. Although the RFP says the boardwalk will not continue past Beach 126th Street, it does say: Additional services may be required for sections of the Rockaways west of Beach 126th Street. As it stands, the blocks from the west side of Beach 126th Street through Beach 149th will be protected by its current baffle walls and additional sand scheduled to be pumped in the coming weeks. No additional measures have been elucidated.

At a minimum, the RFP directs bidders to submit proposals that include plans for: • new boardwalks and Protective Structures that are more resilient and able to withstand storm and tidal forces that may impact the coastline in future years; • new boardwalks that are three (3) feet higher than the 100-year storm elevation; • new boardwalks designed to H-20 loading capacity; • removal of sections of original timber boardwalks, ramps and stairs with new structurally rated concrete components to allow public access, maintenance and emergency vehicle access to safely travel the boardwalks where existing substructures can be reused; • utilization of substantial existing structures that have withstood Superstorm Sandy and removal of selected sections of structures to create islands or areas distinctively different from conventional and surviving boardwalk structures; • new oases area on the north side of the boardwalks within DPR property lines; • new appropriate park furniture, plumbing and electrical fixtures, and railings to meet DPR standards and shall be approved by PDC; and • new LED solar and conventional lighting.

It is expected that the design and engineering firms which put in place the current boardwalk islands will be a leading contender for the contract. Many locals speculate that much has been decided and that the RFP is merely a pro-forma step the City is required to undertake.

For a complete review of the RFP, visit NYCEDC.org

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