The demolition of the Long Beach boardwalk, the iconic structure that sustained extensive damage during Hurricane Sandy in October, will start as a ceremonial event this weekend.
The ceremony is at Grand Boulevard boardwalk at 11 a.m. on Jan. 5, according to an announcement posted on the City of Long Beach’s website Monday. “All are invited to join the City of the Long Beach as we say goodbye to an old friend, the Long Beach Boardwalk,” the announcement reads.
Earlier this month, the City Council voted to award the Farmingdale-based construction firm, Thomas Novelli Contracting, a $1.4 million contract to demolish and dispose the Sandy-battered boardwalk. The reconstruction of the 2.2-mile structure along the Atlantic Ocean is estimated to cost about $25 million.
Gordon Tepper, a city spokesman, told Patch that the work to demolish the entire boardwalk will begin Saturday. “It will take some time to complete, but that's day one,” he said.
The original Long Beach boardwalk was built by developer William Reynolds, a former state senator, in 1908. Long Beach historian Roberta Fiore said that Reynolds had elephants march down to the barrier island from his amusement park, Dreamland, in Coney Island, as a publicity stunt to promote the boardwalk.