Seaside Heights residents started to re-populate the Hurricane Sandy-ravage Jersey shore community today (Monday), 10 weeks after the destructive storm. A message posted on the borough's website, welcomed residents back and confirmed regular mail service would also resume today. Seaside Heights leaders called the double dose of good news "the biggest steps back to normal yet."
For more than two and a half months, Seaside Heights (and many other Jersey shore communities on the barrier island) have been uninhabitable. Hurricane Sandy left massive destruction to homes and business, roads, and utilities. The entire main gas line had to be refurbished which took weeks and limited property access to the daylight hours. But today that all changes for Seaside residents. "No more restrictions on travel in and out of Seaside Heights, people living in their homes after receiving a Certificate of Continued Occupancy, businesses, which are ready, open until 10pm and mail delivery. Keep up the good work and the positive attitudes and we will be back better than ever and sooner rather than later," a message on the Seaside Heights website reads.
The first phase of re-population, which allowed businesses to open their doors, started on December 12. The third and fourth phases are expected to start on February 1 and March 1 and will involve residential rentals and hotel/motels respectively.