Our chapter’s Coastal Issues Committee members spoke at the EH Town Hall meeting with Army Corp of Engineers regarding Downtown Montauk. We reiterated our position that the best approach for Downtown Montauk is to relocate all the structures on the primary dune and, subsequently, restore and replenish the dune and beach. We also voiced our concern and objection regarding the use of geotextile bags/tubes as an erosion control solution. Finally, we asked that Ditch Plains Beach also be included in a soft solution to the coastal erosion issues confronting Montauk.
The Coastal Issues Committee has since attended an EH Town Board work session that included a presentation by First Coastal, a frequent Army Corp subcontractor, that discussed the value of “at risk” property in Downtown Montauk and the process by which the Army Corp evaluates projects. At this meeting we asked that the Town Board commence a similar study of the value of “at risk” property in Ditch Plains to further support a larger Corp project that would include Ditch Plains in a soft solution that involved the relocation of vulnerable properties. We also reviewed a presentation on the Lake Montauk Watershed Plan that calls for steps to be taken to reverse the trend of deteriorating water quality in many parts of Lake Montauk. We continue to engage with EH Town Board members and other County, State and Federal politicians on these issues.
Coastal geologist Dr. Robert Young submitted the following letter on behalf of our chapter. He evaluated the Army Corps of Engineers’ proposal to protect the motels that were built atop the ocean front primary dune many years ago. Please view Dr. Young’s letter here.
The proposal recommends constructing a new dune that will be reinforced with huge sand bags and located well seaward of the existing primary dune in what is now the ocean intertidal zone and our publicly-owned beach. Some of you may remember when a much smaller version of this – with private funding – was attempted in Bridgehampton many years ago. It unraveled in a time span of months.