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When Sandy blew through last October, familiar beach facilities like lifeguard stations and changing rooms were destroyed. Now 7 months later, area beaches are racing to replace them before the Memorial Day weekend, the traditional start of the summer season.

Rendering: Garrison Architects via Gizmodo

Manufactured in Pennsylvania, 37 modular, steel-framed stations will be placed on 15 sites in Rockaway Beach, Queens, Coney Island and Midland beaches in Brooklyn, and Wolfe’s Pond Park and Cedar Grove, Staten Island.

Rendering: Garrison Architects via Architizer

The galvanized steel modules can be configured into lifeguard stations, comfort stations and offices for operations. They will be elevated to FEMA’s storm standards, with ramps and stairs providing access to the beach and the boardwalk.

Rendering: Garrison Architects via Architizer

From Architizer: Garrison Architects and the New York City government are coming to the rescue with a series of modular beach facilities to be deployed around May 25. The pavilions, 37 in total, are being manufactured in Pennsylvania and will be delivered as single pieces to their respective sites. Conforming in size to interstate trucking limits, the pavilions will house comfort stations, lifeguard stations, and offices for Parks Enforcement Patrol and Maintainence and Operations Staff.

Built on pre-installed concrete piers, the pavilions will sit at or above FEMA’s revised Advisory Base Flood Elevations (ABFEs). This in addition to the selected material palette will ensure the pavilions’ resistence to future storms.

by Mai Armstrong for Working Harbor Committee

Aerial view of damage to the Great Kills Marina area. photo: NPS/Cunningham

Nichols Marina’s 350 floating slips were destroyed by Hurricane Sandy, and now boaters have been told that the National Parks Service has refused to renew the lease that would allow the marina operators to rebuild.

The NPS owns the marina which they lease to Marinas of the Future Inc., an operator that oversees and maintains Great Kills Park in the Gateway National Recreation Area. Marinas of the Future wants to rebuild the docks, but as the NPS site notes: Hurricane Sandy destroyed all docks at the Great Kills Marina, so marina services for the 2013 summer season are not possible.

Nichols Marina at Great Kills Park is gone. Boat owners may store boats by at the park until April 15, 2013. photo: NPS/Dennis Bosak

Although the marina lost all of its floating slips during the storm, most of the pilings remain. Marina management reports that the bulkhead and infrastructure were not badly damaged and that their office facilities, restrooms and equipment are all in working order.

From the Staten Island Advance: “The fact that we’re even having this fight is ridiculous,” said Rep. Michael Grimm, an avid supporter of the cause who attended yesterday’s rally with more than 100 other boaters. “It will be devastating to the boating community if the National Parks Service doesn’t allow them to rebuild.”

Because the private community has offered to pay the costs to rebuild, Grimm said the National Park Service’s stance doesn’t make any sense. “That marina helps to drive the local economy. The National Parks Service needs to recognize the value of this marina.”

Docks at Nichols Marina in Great Kills. photo: Staten Island Advance/Jan Somma-Hammel

On Sunday, boaters rallied to express their frustration and sadness over the National Parks decision.

From WPIX11: “This place is like family to me. Where else will I put my boat? “I’ve been hanging out here for 12 years with my friends,” Pete Palermo of Staten Island said. “Where else would I go?”

Palermo gets teary-eyed when he and his buddies talk about what the Nichols Great Kills Park Marina means to them.

“It’s like family to me,”

All 350 boats will have to be removed by April 15. photo: WPIX11

The current leaseholder, the Marinas of the Future, have been told they have no future here. The National Park Service said all boats have to be removed by April 15.

by Mai Armstrong for Working Harbor Committee

Our local businesses need us! They are open and need customers. One of the many ways we can help businesses affected by Sandy is to shop, eat and drink heartily at our favorite establishments.

Meade's Bar is Open! 22 Peck Slip. Go! photo: Kathleen Aisha via Meade's Bar

Meade’s is Open! 22 Peck Slip. Go! photo: Kathleen Aisha via Meade’s Facebook page

Sandy’s flooding surge inundated the many small businesses along our coasts. But, valiant efforts have been taking place since the superstorm blew through. Work to rebuild began when power was not yet restored and gasoline shortages threatened to silence the hum of generators pumping out gallons and gallons of storm water.

Jeremy's Ale House was flooded and saw thousands of dollars in damage after Sandy. They're open now, but need customers. MetroFocus/ Georgia Kral via

Jeremy’s Ale House was flooded and saw thousands of dollars in damage after Sandy. They’re open now, but need customers. photo: MetroFocus/ Georgia Kral via

Jeremy’s Ale House on Front Street was one of the first in the seaport to reopen for business, but customers have been slow to return.

From But while Jeremy’s has been open for the past two weeks after cleaning up from the flood, the customers have only trickled in — a meager reward for the accomplishment of getting back to business. “We’re not doing any business. Nobody’s down here,” he said. [Jeremy] Holin has already “burned through” $100,000 of his own money, and was applying for all the grants and loans he could.

Chano serving up some cheer at Meade's. photo: meade's photostream

Always smiling at Meade’s. photo: Meade’s photostream

Meade’s, a long-standing favorite of the Working Harbor Committee, is open as well. Our buddies Chano, Kathleen and Izzy cleaned out all the damaged equipment, ripped out the soaked sheet-rock and scrubbed every inch of the place. They had a candlelight opening way back at the beginning of November, a welcome sight for the damage weary residents of South Street Seaport.

Cowgirl Seahorse is open.

Cowgirl Seahorse is open. photo via Eater

But the crowds need to return. That’s where we come in. Eater has a list of what is open. Check it out here. Go to the seaport this evening. It’s going to be a beautiful spring-like night. Have a great meal, a few drinks and a few laughs. Tell all your friends!  Our friends downtown are all waiting to serve you up some good ol’ seaport warmth and cheer.

by Mai Armstrong for Working Harbor Committee

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