FEMA Approves $100k To Begin Work On Sea Gate’s Damaged Flood Barrier

sea gate
Coast at Sea Gate. (Photo: Dennis / Flickr)

Senators Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand and Congressman Hakeem Jeffries announced Monday they had secured $100,000 from FEMA to begin reconstructing the damaged sea wall to protect Sea Gate and Coney Island from storm surges.

The seawall and bulkhead, once the community’s greatest protection against storm surges and erosion, was destroyed during Hurricane Sandy — leaving Sea Gate and neighboring Coney Island at risk of severe flooding in the event of future storms. According to a press release, the new funding will go towards the project’s initial phase, which will cover engineering design and analysis, surveying costs, permits and application fees. FEMA will consider funding the additional $2.7 million required to complete the project after the analysis phase is complete.

“This federal investment will help make sure this bulkhead project gets off the ground soon so that these communities are better protected in the event of a future storm. Overall, the project will provide mitigation measures, including bulkhead, between Beach 48th Street and Beach 50th Street,” Schumer said in the press release.

The initial phase is already underway and scheduled to be completed next March, according to a spokesperson from Gillibrand’s office.

The new bulkhead and seawall will protect an estimated 1,177 feet between Beach 48th Street and Beach 50th Street in Sea Gate. The structure will be built using a large timber and pile wall with vinyl sheeting that will act to shield the land and building materials.

“Superstorm Sandy devastated our communities and the approved FEMA grant will help establish a plan of action to effectively launch the proposed bulkhead project,” Gillibrand said in the press release. “New York is still recovering and these investments remain critical to provide much needed resources on the ground.”

Sandy caused more than $45 million dollars in damage to Sea Gate alone, according to the Governor’s Office of Storm Recovery. The neighborhood’s police department and administration buildings were destroyed, there was no gas or electricity for six weeks, and almost 750 homes were damaged.

FEMA’s Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP) provides funding to rebuild structures with improved designs in order to prevent future loss of life and property damage.

“Superstorm Sandy decimated many of the beach communities throughout the district I represent, including Sea Gate,” Jeffries said in the press release. “This grant of $100,000 in FEMA funding will play an instrumental role in protecting our shores in the Sea Gate community from the devastating effects of any future storms.”


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