New moon tides, northeast winds and rain are in the forecast for this weekend, and they could combine to flood streets. The National Weather Service predicts tides of 5.6 feet (mean low water) at 8:01 p.m. Saturday and 6.4 feet at 8:50 p.m. Sunday (see www.ocnj.us/octides to compare those predictions to recent and historic events). I ask everybody to monitor conditions and be prepared to move vehicles in the hours around the high tides this weekend.
We’re also watching the path of Tropical Storm Florence. The system is in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, and it’s still too early to know where it’s headed. But we’re entering the heart of hurricane season, and it’s a good reminder of the importance of preparedness. A list of resources is available at www.ocnj.us/oem.
The major neighborhood drainage projects at the north end and Fourth Ward continue to make progress. Crews at the north end are finishing concrete work on Fifth Street between West Avenue (near the Ocean City Primary School) and Bay Avenue. That stretch of Fifth Street will remain closed to all but local traffic until the concrete work is complete. The refilled trenches there must settle for several weeks before final paving can begin. Separate crews are laying pipe on Seventh Street, and paving at the northern end of the project area is expected to begin on Sept. 17. In the Fourth Ward, three of four pumping stations are in place. The contractor is working with Atlantic City Electric to bring power service to the new equipment.
Finally, I’d like to remind everybody of annual 9/11 memorial ceremony at 6 p.m. Tuesday, in front of the Ocean City Fire Department headquarters between Fifth Street and Sixth Street on Asbury Avenue. I encourage you all to attend. The ceremony includes music, prayer and reflections on the memory of lives lost and on the community spirit that was renewed in the wake of the tragedy. This year’s special guest speaker will be Rev. Stephen J. Connor, the new pastor at Holy Trinity Episcopal Church. In 2001, Father Connor was living in New York City and spent September through December first ministering at ground zero and then at the morgue on the east side of New York.
Jay A. Gillian