Goldfeder urges Economic Development Corporation and SKANSKA to remove plastic and rusted nails left behind from boardwalk construction
Rockaway Beach, Queens – Following a meeting with concerned community members, Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder (D – Rockaway Beach) is calling on the Economic Development Corporation and SKANSKA, the contractor that built the new baordwalk, to clean up debris left behind from boardwalk construction, and develop a plan to mitigate these hazards for the final stage of building.
“This debris is not only unsightly, it is a health and safety hazard,” said Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder. “These scraps will burrow into the sand, creating a potential environmental hazard for years to come. I urge EDC and SKANSKA to clean up all the leftover debris as soon as possible, and create a plan so that this does not happen in the final phase of construction.”
In a letter to President Maria Torres-Springer of the Economic Development Coproration, Goldfeder requested that EDC increase the number of crews they were sending out to clean the beach, and ensure that the sand is property sifted, to remove all smaller pieces of debris. Goldfeder also suggested that EDC and SKANSKA develop a plan, so that a similar problem does not occur following the final phase of boardwalk construction.
According to residents of Rockaway Beach, there are shavings of Recycled Plastic Lumber, or RPL, which was used on ramps, buried in the sand where the boardwalk construction took place. Community members also reported finding pieces of rusted wire, scraps of wood, and metal from chain link fences in and around the beach. All this inorganic material, particularly the rusted wire, poses environmental and safety concerns to families who use the beach.
“The improper disposal of debris is a hazard,” said John Cori, president of the Rockaway Beach Civic Association. “There was a lot of money allocated to this job, and some of that should be used to effectively clean up all the plastic, rusted nails, and construction materials that have been left behind on the beach. We feel hopeful after our meeting with EDC, and I think I speak for the community when I say that we are looking forward to getting this debris cleaned up.”
Construction is set to begin on the boardwalk between Beach 19th Street and Beach 39th Street. This final stage of the project will begin in Fall 2016, and continue through the winter. In anticipation of this last phase of construction, Goldfeder is urging EDC and SKANSKA to develop a plan to prevent further debris on the beach, and ensure an easy clean-up process.
“Our new Boardwalk is bigger, stronger and better than ever and has finally given families our beach back, however, agencies and contractors must make sure that the beach is safe and clean for the community, and environmentally sound for years to come,” concluded Goldfeder.