Rockaway Beach is the Most Expensive Beach in America

Calling a beach the most expensive sounds a little odd, particularly when you are not buying it outright. But in some cases the maintenance and expansion of a public beach requires huge investments making the beach rather expensive. According to this parameter the most expensive beach in America is the Rockaways. The beach has shrunk due to the havoc created by Sandy. The narrower beach will look more crowded this summer. Luckily the US Army Corps of Engineers have taken it upon themselves to replace the lost sand and restore the glory of the beach. The investment involved in the project will make the beach even more expensive.

Army Corps Had Moved in Millions of Dollars Worth of Sand

The old residents of the area remember both the erosion and the reconstruction of the beach. John Cori, 50, who is a resident of Rockaway remembers the grandeur of the beach when people had to get down 14 steps and jump another 4 feet to get to the beach. He also remembers the fate of the beach when the waves had eroded the sand even from under the boardwalk steps. It was towards the end of the 1970s that the federal government decided to invest in the reconstruction and restoration of the Rockaway Beach. The Army Corps also chipped in with millions of dollars worth of sand. However, the flow of funds dried up in 2004 and the level of maintenance dropped drastically.
Sandy Sucked Out 1.5 Million Cubic Yards of Sand to Deeper Water

It was Sandy, the storm that almost swallowed the entire beach. The waves during the storm sucked sand into deeper water. According to estimates made by Army Corps almost 1.5 million cubic yards of sand simply disappeared from the beach. The Army Corps of Engineers have taken it upon themselves to restore the beach. Half of the sand lost during the storm will be replaced this summer itself at the cost of $10 million. The Program for the Study of Developed Shorelines at Western Carolina University has gone through, in detail, the records at the federal, state and local level to assess the cost of maintaining different beaches. The Rockaway has been receiving funds for its maintenance since 1926 and $216,928,138 has been spent on it till date.

Rockaway Beach at Beach 90th Street. (Stephen Nessen/WNYC)
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