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Monday, March 24, 2008

Oyster River sea wall repaired

By James Tinley
Register Staff
MILFORD — After almost 70 years of standing up to Long Island Sound, the newly-repaired Oyster River sea wall is ready to withstand the rolling waves and tides.
Rep. Richard Roy, D-Milford, said Friday that the three-year, $300,000 project to restore the sea wall in Woodmont near the West Haven line is nearly complete.
Large chunks of concrete that had been washed away over the years were replaced.
“The sea wall itself is in much better condition and will hold back more water than it has in the recent past,” Roy said.
A rusted guardrail with exposed jagged pieces of metal has also been replaced, he said.
“I was worried an elderly person might lean up against it and fall right into the water,” Woodmont Borough Warden Dick Austin said. “It just wasn’t safe before.”
Austin said he originally raised concerns about the wall, but a dispute with the state resulted in a three-year stalemate.
“I had to prove that the state owned the wall and not the borough,” Austin said. “We went back and forth for a while, but they finally admitted it was theirs and paid to fix it.”
A walkway still needs to be paved, and benches need to be put back on the wall before people can sit and enjoy the views of the beach, Long Island Sound and the Oyster River.
The Oyster River sea wall was built one year after the hurricane of 1938 ravaged the coast of New England, killing 600 and causing severe flooding.
During the hurricane, a portion of New Haven Avenue was swept into the sea.
The wall was built to protect the integrity of the road and prevent further erosion.
James Tinley can be reached at or 401-3530.


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