2014-03-07 / Top Stories

Fort Tilden Fix Up Needed

Local politicians are urging the U.S. Department of Interior (DOI) to speed up the process of repairing Sandy-damaged Fort Tilden.

Senator Charles E. Schumer and Assemblyman Phillip Goldfeder wrote a letter to the U.S. Department of Interior, Secretary Sally Jewell, asking her to expedite the repair work on the deteriorated beachfront in Fort Tilden so that it can be reopened to the public.

“It’s been nearly 17 months since Sandy and it’s unacceptable that areas of our federal beaches are still covered with debris from the storm and considered unsafe for our families,” Goldfeder said. “I strongly urge the DOI to immediately repair the Sandy-damaged areas of Fort Tilden and allow our community to once again enjoy this natural recreational area.”

“Hurricane Sandy pummeled New York’s coastlines, and at Fort Tilden left behind and exposed loads of dangerous debris on the beaches,” Schumer said. “But 17 months later, and with the summer season approaching, we need to do everything we can to re-open this treasured beachfront up to the community again for fishing and recreation.”

Following Sandy, bulkheads that used to lie under the sand were left uncovered and piercing the surface, creating unsafe conditions for pedestrians and fishermen. Fort Tilden used to be a prime fishing spot as fishermen are able to catch striped bass, blue fish and flounder that pass by the area.

“Fish like to feed in the ocean between the jetties at certain times of the year and Fort Tilden has always been an excellent location for fishing. Bringing back fishing to this area would uplift people who were so hard-hit by Superstorm Sandy,” Gene Ander, a local fisherman and member of the Gateway Stripers Club said. “There are thousands of fishermen in the area who fish in Fort Tilden and the Rockaways and that means fishermen are coming in and shopping at local bait and tackle shops, frequenting restaurants, and other establishments. With the park closed this means less economic activity for the peninsula. We need Fort Tilden to reopen its gates to fishermen immediately.”

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