Friday, August 1, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

This Section of The Boardwalk Is Closed. Yeah.

All was peaceful in the inlet at Grammercy Place, site of last week's Boardwalk collapse. Is there a nicer spot at the Jersey Shore?

This Section of The Boardwalk Is Closed. Yeah.

The news of a Boardwalk collapse last Thursday was somewhat muted by its location, far from casinos and stores and tourists, around the bend past Revel and bordering the inlet that separates Absecon Island from good old Brigantine, the Australia of the Jersey shore (and future home of Patrick Kennedy, his bride and their baby, when they can move out of her parent's house in Absecon.)

This part of the Boardwalk has been crumbling for years, and part of it has been blocked off, sadly. The collapse happened after pilings gave out, leaving it somewhat poetically in mid-collapse, the piling leaning one way, the buckled Boadwalk leaning the other, a bench in mid-slide, the wood curving like an accordian, but seemingly not more than a plank or two actually detached. If you look closely at the jetty in the distance, you can see a lone early fisherman at the end.

This is a really undervalued part of Atlantic City. The inlet waves and views are just epically beautiful, a little fiercer than the ones that border the casino row of Atlantic City, which also have big sand dunes that make it hard to see the ocean from the boardwalk. This is near where the old Capt. Starns restaurant used to be, and not far from Gardiner's Basin on the bayside, another undervalued part of Atlantic City, places a little closer to its alternate identity as a barrier island and fishing port. (As opposed to seaside casino town). This spot, just off Maine Avenue, is also a go-to spot during Hurricanes and Nor'easters to see some dramatic churnted up ocean, which may also explain why it was the first place to give way. City officials are talking about demolishing, which is sad, in favor of expanding the sea wall as a promenade. Either way, it's a spot worth seeking out, Boardwalk or not.

And here's the video, which in its loneliness and collapsed Boardwalk and rushing waves, seems like it could have been taken in some future time, after all the casinos have finally collapsed themselves, and the water is still rising, and the Army Corps has given up, and the island is returned to nature. Oh jeez.

About this blog

Inquirer staff writer Amy S. Rosenberg has covered Philly police, city neighborhoods, Ed Rendell as mayor, the Jersey shore, Atlantic City, Miss America and the psychology of Eagles fans. She moved to Ventnor on July 3, 1995, which makes her a local, but not really.

Inquirer Staff Writer Jacqueline L. Urgo has spent every summer of her life at the Jersey Shore, and has lived there year-round for nearly 30 years, even fulfilling one of her bucket list dreams by once living in a house by the sea.

Since 1990, she has covered the waterfront for The Inquirer — from the Atlantic to the Delaware Bay shore — and some of the mainland in between. Along the way, she amassed an encyclopedic knowledge of this tear-it-down-and-build-it-back-up region, delving into the history and the hype of a place with a lot of unexpected stories to tell.

Reach The Downashore at arosenberg@phillynews.com.

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