The Department of Environmental Protection yesterday joined with federal and local officials to mark the completion of a flood-control culvert that will make communities surrounding Monmouth County’s Wreck Pond more resilient to storms and floods.
The Christie Administration launched the $7.4-million lake restoration project in July 2015, as a collaborative effort involving many partners.
The cornerstone is the 600-foot-long concrete culvert restoring tidal flows between the ocean and the 73-acre pond. The pond’s natural inlet was filled in during the 1930s. A pipe constructed at the time to connect the ocean and lake restricted tidal flows, exacerbating flooding and leading to degraded water quality.
The Monmouth County Department of Public Works and Engineering is conducting a second phase of dredging as part of the overall restoration project. This work is expected to be completed by the end of this year.
Work on creating more than a mile of living shorelines and a sand berm planted with native vegetation will begin in the spring.
The Administration is funding the project through a $3.85 million grant from the DEP’s Flood Hazard Risk Reduction and Resiliency grant program and $608,000 from the DEP’s Corporate Business Tax grant program. The U.S. Department of the Interior provided a $2 million grant and the borough of Spring Lake is providing $915,000.
In addition to the $3.85 million in funding for the Wreck Pond project, the Flood Hazard Risk Reduction and Resiliency grant program provided $6.5 million for a canal pump station in Atlantic City, $6.2 million for an outfall project for Belmar’s Lake Como, $1.4 million for new stormwater pump stations in Brigantine, $914,000 for tide gate improvement in Little Ferry, $12.3 million for stormwater infrastructure improvement in Wildwood and $9.93 million for flood control in North Wildwood.