JERSEY CITY AND BEYOND – No one was spared the wrath of Superstorm Sandy – including the Statue of Liberty.
For the past few weeks, the Passaic Valley Sewerage Commission (PVSC) has been hard at work clearing major debris deposited by Superstorm Sandy from the shoreline that adjoins Port Liberte and New York Harbor.
For residents of Port Liberte – a townhouse and condominium community, which commands a spectacular, panoramic view of the New York Skyline – the debris left behind by Sandy presented an esthetic as well as a safety problem. Among the debris removed from the shoreline are large timbers, pieces of ravaged docks, and piers and other floatables that not only are unsightly and dangerous to residents, but hazardous to recreational and commercial traffic in the navigation channel.
“It’s fitting that PVSC – through our River Restoration Program – has been able to remove this ugly debris and transform these beautiful vistas just in time for our nation’s 237th birthday,” said PVSC Executive Director Michael DeFrancisci.
The PVSC has embarked on an intensive, strategic post-storm cleanup campaign to free the Passaic River and major tributaries of blockages, help with flood control and maintain the quality of the waterways. The Statue of Liberty was closed for a year until October 28, 2012, so that a secondary staircase and other safety features could be installed; Liberty Island remained open.
However, one day after the reopening, Liberty Island closed due to the effects of Hurricane Sandy, and the island remained off limits to the public for months. Public access to the balcony surrounding the torch has been barred for safety reasons since 1916.
The statue was set to reopen to the public by July 4, 2013.