Nearly one year after a post-Christmas nor’easter washed out the end of Soundview Avenue in Southold, the town has just received word from the Federal Emergency Management Agency that funding is in place to enable workers to repair the road.
A several hundred foot section of Soundview between Goldin Lane and Route 48 has been closed since the Dec. 26, 2010 storm, awaiting $236,000 in disaster assistance funding from FEMA, permission from seven property owners on the Soundfront side of the road to work on the cliff, and a DEC permit.
Town Supervisor Scott Russell said Tuesday that he received notice that FEMA’s “Blue Books,” which outline the work the federal agency will pay for, are finalized and in the hands of the New York State Office of Emergency Management for disbursement of funds. He said he hopes work will begin within the next few days.
The closed section of Soundview Avenue runs to the north of the North Fork Beach Condominiums along the Soundfront cliff, which was scoured away by the wind and the waves to within a couple feet of the road. While grass can be seen along the edge of the road, the cliff is scoured away underneath the grass, making the entire area unsafe for pedestrians and motorists alike.
Town Engineer Jamie Richter, who is coordinating the work, said Monday that the town already has DEC permits in place to shore up the cliff alongside Soundview Avenue, by placing rows of four-ton armor stone rip-rap at the base of the cliff and backfilling that with sand.
Assistant town attorney Jennifer Andaloro confirmed Tuesday that easements with all the property owners are in place.
FEMA is also due to reimburse the town for more than $130,000 worth of work done at Town Beach, just east of the closed end of Soundview Avenue, which was also severely scoured away after the post-Christmas nor’easter. The town received a donation of about $200,000 worth of sand from the Cross Sound Ferry, but needed to have the sand trucked from Orient to Southold to do the work. The asphalt parking lot also needed to be shored up and repaved.
Mr. Richter said he already has calls in to suppliers to put materials on hold to fix the cliff adjacent to the end of Soundview Avenue, but he will not order the materials until he gets the go-ahead from the Town Board.
“Once the materials are coordinated and the contractors are here, it should only take a couple weeks to do,” he said.