Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Preserving a lighthouse

photo by Pamela Bednarik via Montauk Point Lighthouse


Today's Times has a great article outlining the preservation issues surrounding the Montauk lighthouse: "For Montauk, It's Lighthouse vs. Surf's Up!"

Should the effect on surfers' waves be considered when building a seawall to protect the lighthouse? Sure.

But should they stop the plan to build the seawall when that's the solution that has been determined to protect the lighthouse? No.

In fact, according to Greg Donohue, the erosion control manager for the Montauk Historical Society, "the project...is based on decades of careful study, including wave-tank analysis at the University of Delaware that showed Alamo [the surf break that gives them big waves] would not be seriously affected by the revetment."

Hmm, a 210-year old lighthouse, commissioned by George Washington, that is the oldest in New York State and the fourth-oldest active lighthouse in the country, or waves for surfing.

I'm all for preserving water sports, but come on. Preservation of the lighthouse is a benefit for all. Major surf breaks are a benefit for the relative few who can surf. And since noone really knows how the new revetment will affect the waves, it would be foolish to risk the survival of the lighthouse for the possibility the break will be compromised. The surfers suggest moving the lighthouse but preservationists counter that it's too fragile to move. Moving should probably not even be considered as an option since it loses some of its historical significance if it is moved.

Let's hope the Corps of Engineers is allowed to continue with their plans and the lighthouse is preserved for years to come.

1 Comments:

At 5:32 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Preservation of the lighthouse is a benefit for all. Major surf breaks are a benefit for the relative few who can surf."

how is this, exactly?

You need to take a step back and realize that your 'musts' and 'certainties' only exist as such in your mind. don't let your concentrated interest and free blogspot url turn you into a bully.

-a non-surfing, non-lighthouse appreciating reader

 

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