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New Bridge Could Shutter Businesses Opened After Sandy

Even if you haven’t traveled through the coastal towns post-Sandy, you’ve undoubtedly seen the pictures and video of the devastation.

The few businesses in the hardest hit areas that managed to reopen after the storm became a sign of hope for local residents…and now those businesses are in danger of closing.

Asbury Park Press reports that Monmouth County officials are considering replacing the Rumson-Sea Bright bridge across the Shrewsbury River, just off Rt. 36.

The 62-year-old existing bridge definitely needs to be replaced, showing various signs of wear.

The plan is to build a new drawbridge, just south of the existing bridge, which would keep traffic as normal as possible. (If you take out that intersection, the detour is about 10 miles out of the way for Sea Bright, Highlands, Rumson, Monmouth Beach, and other local residents.)

Rumson-Sea Bright bridge
The Dunkin Donuts, seen here at left, is one of few businesses in Sea Bright that reopened after Sandy. It may have to close in the wake of bridge construction. (Google Maps)

The problem is that the new bridge will impact the Dunkin Donuts at the base of the existing bridge (among other things), which is one of few businesses in the area that was able to reopen after Sandy. The construction will remove the store’s parking lot…meaning the store will likely not be allowed to stay open.

Originally, there was a proposal to do the same thing on the north side of the existing bridge, but it would have displaced the residents living in an apartment complex there. Sandy forced those residents out…which means that’s no longer an issue.

Perhaps one local business seems like a small thing to give up for the ‘greater good,’ but if it’s something that means a lot to the people who live there, isn’t it worth saving?

Maybe there’s no way to make everyone happy in this situation…it seems someone’s property and/or livelihood will be impacted no matter what the decision.

What do you think is the best way to resolve this issue? Tell us in the comment section below!

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