It is mid-winter at Brickyard. It is a snowy, beautiful winter wonderland. It is also cold and most days very quiet. Things ARE, however, happening so here some quick updates on the “breaking news”.
REVIEW AND PREVIEW
Watch for Jeff Garrett’s Winter 2019 Report. It should be on the streets shortly! He will give us a comprehensive rundown of our 2018 activities and accomplishments along with a look at some infrastructure improvement projects, community engagement and stewardship priorities and events on the 2019 horizon.
Overall, 2018 was a good year at Brickyard Creek (BYC). Our finances remain strong and our reserves continue to grow; a new long-term lease means The National Park Service’s future at BYC was secured; the reconstruction of Roy’s Point Marina will give it a long term future; the trails and listening points remain exceptionally well maintained and improved in spite of very rough weather conditions and water damage; a new trail linking BYC I and III was completed at the top of Sophie Lane; the Vision, Forest and Watershed Committees partnered on several important Boreal Forest Citizenship stewardship and community engagement projects; sales remained strong, condo inventory is low, and a new cottage model is under construction; we had no security issues and an uneventful rental season. All good news!
Looking ahead to 2019 we see these trends continuing. Our financial strength allowed funding of our operating budget without the need for an assessment increase; our “tech team” (Tony Jeanette, Zina Harrington, and Jeff Garrett) will be rolling out an incredible new Brickyard Creek Community Website later this spring; restoration of the beach and other improvements to the waterfront are on tap; and increased opportunities for community stewardship and engagement are being planned. Finally, 2019 will be the year we complete work on the development of a Brickyard Creek Master Association. Lots to look forward to.
You will soon be receiving a special edition of Around the Yard giving you an introduction to and an overview of the Brickyard Creek Master Association Project. It will be the first in a series of information pieces and action requests you will be receiving over the next several months. Watch for it. Your comments and questions will be invited and your informed approval will be needed.
Many of you are asking “When will it be done?? …or… When will we have our beach back??”. Bad weather, high water levels, personnel issues, a sunken barge, and a blown engine in the tug boat all conspired to push the completion of the project, originally planned for the late summer/early fall of 2018, into the spring of 2019. The National Park Services part the project (south break wall rebuild) was completed last fall. The Roy’s Point Marina part of the project is scheduled to begin as soon as the ice breaks up…hopefully in early April. It is a much smaller project involving reconstruction of the smaller north break wall and bulkheads. According to Roy’s Point Marina, it is projected to be a 6-8-week project. If things go as planned, this should put completion in mid to late June. So, let’s all hope for an early thaw, good weather and hopefully the construction site that is now our beach will be gone, the beach will be regraded, and accessible again by the end of June.
BEACH RESTORATION AND IMPROVEMENT
Once construction is completed the contractors are obligated to restore the area to its pre-construction condition. This includes regrading be beach and redistribution of the large amount of sand that was brought in to construct the access road for the heavy equipment. This should enlarge and improve the beach. The lawn area to the north of the Marina bulkhead will be regarded with new topsoil and reseeded. Unfortunately, it will take some time for the beach to fully “heal”. The area will need some nursing and TLC. For example, an important stand of beach grass, critical to assuring the stability of the beach, was lost. We will be organizing a project to re-plant the affected area with seagrass plugs. It is an expensive and labor-intensive project. We are working with the NPS to secure the plugs at a reasonable cost and will be organizing a “Plug and Play” stewardship project to do the planting. In addition, plans are being finalized to upgrade the fire ring area, construct a firewood rack, and refurbish and reconstruct the kayak rack.
ROY’S POINT BOULEVARD, BEACH ACCESS ROAD, AND PARKING LOT RESURFACING
As you may have noticed the potholes on Roy’s Point Boulevard have been growing. We are running out of options for temporary patching. The repaving of Roy’s Point Boulevard from Hwy. 13 to the “Y” is a required component of the NPS lease renewal. Roy’s Point Boulevard is a “shared-use road” however, and BYC has agreed with Bob Davidson and Roy’s Point Marina Association to share the cost on a one-third-each basis. This honors our historic approach to cost sharing on these share use area projects.
The Roy’s Point Marina beach area access road (starting at the “Y” by the NPS dumpsters) and parking lot have also been showing signs of wear and tear, root damage, and sinking cracking pavement. A strong argument can be made that it makes sense to resurface this area at the same time as we do Roy’s Point Boulevard. The nature of the cost-sharing agreement among the partners for this component is currently under discussion. There is a consensus that the timing of the project should be after the marina projects are completed and all the heavy equipment is gone AND preferably as late in the year as possible to minimize disruption during the summer/high use months. Currently, we are in the process of securing bids for each component which include pricing for two surface-level options – standard blacktop or a crushed, rolled and hardback gravel/blacktop mix. The BYC Board has been planning for this need for some time, and we are in a position (based on 2018 bids) to comfortably finance our share of either option without any special assessments. We will keep you posted as we learn more about pricing and timing options.
Peter Tropman, President
Brickyard Creek Associations