Condo Owners to Protest Beachfront RV Park
Homeowners in Wildwood, N.J., will protest a proposed beach RV park on the boardwalk at Hildreth and Leaming avenues Saturday (July 28) at 11 a.m.
According to Bob Grandinetti, board president of the Ocean Towers Condominiums on Cresse Avenue, the city and protestors reached an agreement Tuesday to move the protest from its original location on the beach to the boardwalk, Shore News Today reported.
Grandinetti said that because of the construction of the new bike path on Cresse Avenue, protestors were concerned about safety, as well as visibility, if they protested on the beach rather than on the boardwalk.
“Our concern was that we were being pushed into a construction zone,” Grandinetti said. “It’s a debate whether or not that was done intentionally.”
Grandinetti said the homeowners were concerned the city had pushed the protest onto the beach to keep them out of sight.
Mayor Ernie Troiano Jr. said that wasn’t the case, but rather the city was concerned about traffic on the boardwalk.
“At 10 a.m. there are thousands of bike riders on the boardwalk, and the last thing I wanted was somebody getting run over by a bike,” Troiano said.
Demonstrators are protesting the proposed RV park on the beach at Cresse Avenue because of safety, environmental, and aesthetic concerns, Grandinetti said.
He pointed out that Cresse Avenue is the only entrance to the beach that large vehicles can use, so with the addition of bike riders because of the new bike path, as well as RVs entering the park, homeowners were concerned about the area becoming too congested. Fluids leaking from the RVs posed an environmental threat, Grandinetti said as well. On top of this, protestors object to the appearance of the park.
“When I look out my window, I would prefer to see the kites flown on Memorial Day, rather than RVs,” he said.
On top of these reasons, homeowners also have concerns that an RV park will lower their property values, Grandinetti said.
Troiano said many of these concerns are built on misconceptions and misunderstandings.
He said that many homeowners were assuming these RVs would call the park home for an extended period of time. This would not be the case, Troiano said, because the city was not running electricity or water to the RVs, and there will be no area to dump waste on the beach.
“It’s not a permanent campsite,” Troiano said. “People will be passing through here during their trips.”
However, he could not say exactly how long the camping vehicles would be allowed to stay on site.
Troiano estimated that the camp will hold about 60 RVs, which he said will have 24-hour security and surveillance, as well as drip pans underneath each unit to prevent leaks onto the beach. However, these aspects were not told to homeowners, Troiano said, which may have given rise to protestors concerns.
“The problem is, these measures were not expressed to the people,” Troiano said.
Protestors will demonstrate 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. between Hildreth and Leaming avenues on the boardwalk Saturday.
Following is a copy of a press release published by the Cape May County Herald:
RV parking on the beach? How could that be a good thing? Join us in a peaceful demonstration, Sat., July 28, 2012 from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Meet at Ocean and Bennett Avenues.
The owners of Ocean Towers, located at the "beginning" of Wildwood's famous boardwalk, have been officially notified for months about the development. Due to a "distance" requirement in the law, no other home owners in Wildwood needed to be notified.
The Homeowners Association of Ocean Towers, upon receiving this notice, reached out to The Wildwood Commissioners, City Engineers & Mayors office and the NJ Department of Environmental Protection in the last couple of months with no results. As this issue has developed, and living in this age of "environmental awareness," the home owners and vacationers of Ocean Towers decided to reach out to all those it effects, especially those home owners & vacationers that use the beaches. We've all gone for "walks on our beaches"; could an RV Park be a good thing on the beach?
We recognize the City needs revenue solutions. This economy plays an issue in all our lives. We want to support and encourage all our city elected officials to develop and grow the Wildwoods for our future family generations to know the "best beaches in the world."