SAVE OCEAN AVENUE COMMIITTEE
November 18, 2022

Hello, everyone, hope you are all enjoying the boardwalk and ocean during this beautiful fall winter weather!

Work has started on making Ocean Boulevard safer. The meeting I had with freeholder Tom Arnone has resulted in the starting of new repairs and construction plans to improve traffic and safety issues along Ocean Boulevard.  At the second meeting with the city this and other issues were discussed and the city will be scheduling a second meeting for more follow up in February 2023.

Another goal of the SOA/LBCC committee has been to improve the safety for people and for bikes on Ocean Boulevard and Ocean Avenue by the boardwalk. There has been good progress on Ocean Boulevard and the cities bike committee, who has gotten the bike study grant approved. Meetings with the state and county officials to implement the new bike ways grant for the entire city and ocean front are being scheduled. This grant will put bike way paths throughout the entire city and oceanfront and improve bike and pedestrian safety. The bike grant committee is seeking community input for the implementation of the new bikeways grant. Our website, saveoceanave.com has a link for community input. 

As a result of the Vine court petition that many of you signed, our meetings with the police department and city to improve police presence along the ocean front and especially in the green acre linear parks where no traffic is allowed are continuing. This is true especially true during the fall and summer months. We have asked for more signage and “children at play signs” to help slow down the speeding electric bikes.

Also you should be aware the boardwalk bathrooms are now closed except for the bath room at Lard Street. Porta johns will be put up at Cottage Avenue for the winter.

The SOA/LBCC committee is committed to the above goals and the improvement of safely crossing and riding bikes on Ocean Boulevard and Ocean Avenue along the boardwalk. The next meeting with the city to discuss these issues and the Vine Court Petition will be scheduled for February 2023.

                                                     
 Remember your voice counts!!!!!!!!

Dennis Sherman 
Chairman Save Ocean Ave Committee  




SAVE OCEAN AVENUE COMMIITTEE
October 26, 2022

Hello, everyone, hope you are all enjoying the boardwalk and ocean during this beautiful fall weather,,,,,,,,,

The SOA committee has also made good progress with Ocean Boulevard and the cities bike committee, who has gotten the bike study grant approved and is already having meetings with the state and county officials to implement the new bike ways grant for the entire city and ocean front. This grant will put bike way paths throughout the entire city and oceanfront. The bike grant committee is seeking community input for the implementation of the new bikeways grant. Already, new crosswalk lines have been re-painted on Ocean Boulevard and surveying work completed for news signsand more traffic control devices to help better control traffic and peoplecrossing the Boulevard.

As a result of the Vine court petition that many of you signed, our meetings with the police department and city to improve police presence along the ocean front and especially in the green acre linear parks where no traffic is allowed are continuing. 

The following are the notes from the Long Branch city council president who is following up on our concerns.

1. The county is applying for a TAP grant almost certain that they are going to get it for  Ocean Blvd. improvements addressing pedestrian crossing and biking safety.

2. Brighton Ave/Ocean Blvd. work to begin October/November, this year. This project has been awarded and approved.

3. We are having ongoing discussions about the beaches internally about speeding bikes and scooters.

4.  DPW works very hard to keep the beaches clean, however some people just don’t care and leave garbage wherever along the beaches and boardwalk and violate dog walking ordinances.

5. We are scheduling a meet and greet meeting for October at the arts center, for the entire community for input. We are waiting for a date.

The SOA/LBCC committee is also moving ahead to improve the safety for bikes and pedestrians.  Following is some of the correspondence from Anita Voogt, Long Branch city council women, who is the chairperson for the cities bike committee and who has steered and chaired this committee for over a year. The committee and Rich Catanese of the committee, has worked hard to get the study grant approved. The grant is now approved and is being implemented. Following is some of the correspondence concerning the plans to implement the bike ways grant.

The City is happy to announce that Long Branch has been awarded a grant by NJDOT to receive Local Bicycle and Pedestrian Planning Technical Assistance with the goal of developing a Complete Streets Implementation Plan.  The plan will identify key areas to improve safety and develop mobility and accessibility solutions in the form of bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure recommendations. At the heart of these improvements will be a strong emphasis on improved safety, accessibility, and equity for all residents. To make this Plan successful, we need your involvement!  With your input, along with other members of the community, and a team of representatives from state agencies and transportation planning professionals, Long Branch is ready to create a holistic and thoughtful plan. There will be a series of public outreach and engagement opportunities. Stay tuned for more details!

 The SOA/LBCC committee is committed to the above goals and the improvement of safely crossing and riding bikes on Ocean Boulevard and Ocean Avenue along the boardwalk. We are also continuing our communication with the city to discuss the issues in the Vine Court petition that was given to the city to improve police presence along the entire oceanfront and boardwalk especially during the busy and crowded summer season.    

 Remember your voice counts!!!!!!!!

                                           

Dennis Sherman 
Chairman Save Ocean Ave Committee  

 

Long Branch to Develop New Bicycle and Pedestrian Safety Lanes 
NJDOT Grant Awarded to City

The City is happy to announce that Long Branch has been awarded a grant by NJDOT to receive Local Bicycle and Pedestrian Planning Technical Assistance with the goal of developing a Complete Streets Implementation Plan. 

The plan will identify key areas to improve safety and develop mobility and accessibility solutions in the form of bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure recommendations. At the heart of these improvements will be a strong emphasis on improved safety, accessibility, and equity for all residents.

To make this Plan successful, we need your involvement!  With your input, along with other members of the community, and a team of representatives from state agencies and transportation planning professionals, Long Branch is ready to create a holistic and thoughtful plan. There will be a series of public outreach and engagement opportunities.

Stay tuned for more details!


SAVE OCEAN AVENUE COMMIITTEE 
 
 
May 1, 2022

Hello everyone, hope you are all doing well,,,,,,,,,,,,, summer is coming,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,                          

It is getting warmer and the oyster catchers have returned to the south end of the Cottage Avenue Beach.  NJDEP wild life has roped off the area hoping to give the new eggs a chance to hatch. You can see the new site from the boardwalk at Avery and Ocean Avenues. It will take everyone’s’ help to prevent loose dogs, people, fence jumpers, and beach goers, etc., from disturbing the new eggs so they can hatch properly. One oyster catcher is sitting on her egg and waiting for the egg to hatch.

I am happy to report that our main goals have been listened to and include:

A new safe bikeway from north to south along the boardwalk and throughout the city which is being planned. Regular committee meetings are taking place. The preservation of the boardwalks’ north and south green acre traffic free parks is preserved and pleasing art, culture and history of Long Branch will be visible for all to see along the boardwalk and beach access points. Quarter mile markers have been etched into the boardwalk from Pier Village’s Moss Mile south and at every quarter of a mile to Brighton Avenue to encourage healthful walking and jogging. Soon, save ocean avenue art boards of Winslow Homer and 4’by8’ history boards and paintings of Long Branch will be put back up at the beach access points. At the bathrooms at West End Avenue and Cottage Avenue picnic benches and flower boxes will be put back up. Disability services at the beaches continued to help all those that need them. If you haven’t noticed the boardwalk bathrooms at West End and Cottage Avenue are now opened and being used.                    

The city is in process of sending out to qualified condominium’s the early reimbursement checks for lighting and snow removal over payments. If you got a check last year you should expect to get a check this year. The public works department 732 571 5665 can answer any of your condominium’s questions concerning these checks and get changes in condo board presidents’ names and addresses.

We continue to work on our other SOA/LBCC objectives. One of our most important and continuing goals is to improve the safe crossing of Ocean Boulevard and to get safely across with beach chairs and families to and from the beach. Summer crowds and heavy traffic especially on congested summer weekends make crossing Ocean Boulevard difficult and dangerous. Another goal is to keep improving the road safety for people using the two green acre parks and especially Ocean Avenue from South Bath Avenue to Pier Village where cars and traffic are mixed with bike riders and beach goers that use Ocean Avenue along the boardwalk. This area gets heavily congested during the summer with many cars, bikes, and people.

 

SAVE OCEAN AVENUE COMMIITTEE     
Dec 1, 2021    

Hello everyone ,hope you are all doing well ,,,,,,,,,,,,,winter is almost here ,,,,,,,

I am happy to tell you the city of Long Branch under the direction of Stan Dziuba Public Works/Emergency Management and the new Director of Public Safety Domingos Salidas have listened to our requests and have made additional changes in traffic safety and enhancing the board walk with art, culture and history. The SOA committee has been working on these goals for a long time and also for the completion of a new bikeway from north to south Long Branch which is underway. There are now more traffic safety signs along Ocean Boulevard and Ocean Avenue. There has been more enforcement of traffic violations on the beach front, for dogs and bikes on the boardwalk, illegal parking and people jumping the boardwalk railings. There are again children at play placards in the roadway on Ocean Avenue in the south green acres linear no traffic park for people to use more safely. The shade park, picnic tables and flower garden boxes are being put back up at the West End road way by the bathroom for all to use and enjoy. The Save Ocean Avenue 4 by 8 ft. art, history, and culture boards of Long Branch are being put back up on the beach at the beach access points along the boardwalk to enhance the ocean walk along the boardwalk. The seven presidents 4 by 8 ft. art board portraits are next to the boardwalk by the roadway as you enter the south green acres linear park at Brighton Avenue, at the beginning of the boardwalk ocean walk to enjoy the start of the ocean walk.

Stay safe ,,,,,,,,,,

Dennis Sherman 
Chairman Save Ocean Ave Committee  

Some New Birds Visted Long Branch This Fall:

Above is a group of Sanderlings - an Arctic nesting species that sometimes winters in NJ and below (with the crazy hairdos) are Royal Terns.

 

SAVE OCEAN AVENUE COMMITTEE MESSAGE
May 1, 2021

Hello everyone, Hope you’re all doing well ,,,,,,

The beginning of May is right around the corner. I am happy to tell you that after much back and forth with the city of Long Branch to try and get more safety signs on the roadways earlier, that the city is planning to put out the pedestrian safety sandwich boards crossing signs on Ocean Boulevard and Ocean Avenue at the crosswalks as of May 1,2021.  Thanks to those of you who have written and asked the city and SOA/LBCC, for safety to be improved as quickly as possible. Ocean Boulevard can be made safer with these signs all year round and not just the summer season, like Sea Bright. Especially with visitors increasing to Long Branch daily because of the covid crisis. Many of our city residents and visitors and families cross the Boulevard, or ride bikes all year round to walk the boardwalk and it dangerous crossing two lanes of traffic going at very fast in both lanes.

A second goal of the SOA and LBCC committee, responding to all your questions and requests, is to help get a safe new bike way that runs from Lake Takanasssee to Monmouth Beach connecting the already traffic free north and south linear green acre parks along the ocean front on Ocean Avenue, where cars and traffic, currently are not allowed. It is safe to use the two green acre parks without fear of being hit by a car. We have spent much time and effort with the city of Long Branch and the engineering department of Monmouth County to try and get more safety for Ocean Boulevard and a new safe bikeway. There is no soft shoulder for bikes from Pavilion Avenue in front of Pier Village north. Many letters and discussions have happened from me and SOA/LBCC to try and make this happen. Last year the idea of a new bike way was finally put into the city’s master plan and a meeting held with the city to try and get bike grants and funding. No funding for bike grants was put in. The County also put in a multimillion-dollar grant to fix all of Ocean Boulevard and the traffic intersection at Brighton Avenue and Ocean Boulevard. A separate bike audit of the city for a new bikeway was completed by the city’s Green Committee and Environmental Committee and the results given to the mayor with specific recommendations. All this happen last year.

A whole year has passed. To date I have been told by the county engineer that the study grant was not accepted to make new improvement's to Ocean Boulevard. I am not aware after much discussion of any new further action being taken on moving ahead with implementing a new bikeway, or any new plans to improve pedestrian and traffic safety on Ocean Boulevard and Ocean Avenue south of Brighton Avenue.

We are in a new time at the city of Long Branch, with many visitors coming to Long Branch year-round, and with new condominium buildings opening up along the ocean front by the railway station and next to Seven Presidents Park, and there will be even more congestion. This will result in more people, more cars, more traffic all along the oceanfront and north and south of Pier Village ,not only in the summer, but year-round. What new plans are there to improve the safety of Ocean Boulevard and Ocean Avenue and when will the the new bike way be  started. Last summer the crowds forced beaches to be closed and Ocean Boulevard was clogged up with traffic especially at Brighton Avenue. What is going to change this year and how quickly will it happen?  What are the cities priorities to quickly deal with these problems?

The city has zoom council meetings every other week and the mayor and city council are very accessible and open to phone calls and e mails, and ideas and complaints. Write or call the mayor    jpallone@longbranch.org   Your voice counts and unless the city makes the safety of Ocean Avenue and Ocean Boulevard and a new safe bikeway a higher priority, nothing more will happen.

I urge all of you who care, to call into the city council meeting tonight Wednesday at 7:30 PM and help ask these questions. The numbers to call for  council meeting are 1-929-205-6099,1-312-626-6799,1-253-215-8782, then enter meeting ID  814-3875-1701 followed by the pound # sign.   The city council meets are every other week at 7:30 PM.  Call them. write, speak to the mayor and council and ask questions if you care about these issues and   more safety. Traffic is increasing with every new day of warmer weather

Your voice counts only if you use it.  We ask you to help communicate these issues to the city if you care. 


Dennis Sherman 
Chairman Save Ocean Ave Committee  




GOALS AND MISSION STATEMENT
of Save Ocean Ave. Committee

 
The Save Ocean Avenue Committee (SOA) was created as part of the Long Branch Coalition of Condominiums Associations (LBCC) in 2007.  The groups supporters’ number in the many hundreds of city residents and condominium association presidents.  The city of Long Branch introduced an Ordinance to put traffic in the south green acres park on Ocean Avenue next to the boardwalk at Brighton Avenue. After obtaining more than four thousand signatures opposing this ordinance the city and council withdrew the ordinance. and invited the SOA committee to meet with the city on a regular basis to share its’ ideas and goals. After much hard work and effort, many improvements to the boardwalk were made only to be destroyed by hurricane "Sandy" in 2012. The destroyed boardwalk was rebuilt three years later in 2015. Unfortunately, much of the art, culture history, shade areas, safety issues, and enough green acre park signs identifying the parks, were not replaced. Additional traffic and parking filled Ocean Avenue along the boardwalk between the south and north traffic free green acre parks along the oceanfront raising traffic safety concerns for bikes,skateboards ,dog walkers, pedestrians,etc.

With many new redevelopment projects nearing competition shortly, many more people will be using the oceanfront and parks. Visit the save ocean avenue committee website. It is interactive and answers questions, signs up new supporters and regularly sends out news blasts about the boardwalk and oceanfront.

The goals and mission statement of the Save Ocean Avenue Committee are as follows;

1.  Protect, beautify and enhance the Green Acre Open Space Parks along Ocean Avenue and the boardwalk and in the city. Introduce more culture, art, sculpture, history onto the boardwalk and linear parks, including West End Park and Jackson woods park.

2.  Improve the safety for pedestrians getting to and from the beach and boardwalk crossing Ocean Boulevard and using Ocean Avenue.

3.  Help create a complete safe bikeway from the beginning of the boardwalk at Brighton Avenue at the south end of the boardwalk up to Seven President park.



SAVE OCEAN AVE FOUNDING FATHER PASSES

Bill McLaughlin    
October 5, 1938 - December 21, 2020



Bill moved to Long Branch 40 years ago and became a “watchdog” for the town. For almost twenty years Bill was a leader and outspoken "watchdog"  of the city of Long Branch and didn't hesitate to speak up at the many city council meetings we attended over the years. When the city first tried to put traffic on Ocean Avenue next to the boardwalk, Bill led the efforts to get signed signature's and petitions and with the SOA committee and many other people, got the city to withdraw the ordinance. No traffic was allowed into the protected  Green Acre State linear parks along the Long Branch boardwalk and Ocean Avenue. The first effort was in the early 2000's and than again around 2015 when the city tried again to put traffic in the Green Acre Park at Brighton and Ocean Avenues. Both times the city was persuaded to drop their efforts. The city was also encouraged to make many improvements to the boardwalk before hurricane "Sandy" in 2012. Bill's favorite saying was, "you have a voice ,,,,use It."  Both the north and south linear parks are traffic free now and many people use them to enjoy the oceanfront.

As president of the L.B.C.C. Bill got the city to reimburse every condominium association every year for the over payments for snow and lighting that were made to the city. This practice continues today and condominium lists are updated every year by the city. The LBCC under Bills leadership would provide help to anyone that needed it with names of reliable contractors and handy men.  At city council meetings, issues of bonds, budgets, ordinances were followed closely and questioned when necessary.  Bill was a fighter and leader over these many years  and many people benefitted by his efforts .

He will long be remembered for his efforts to make Long Branch a better place to live..

THE SAVE OCEAN AVENUE LOGO of  LONG BRANCH


The save ocean avenue logo of the city of Long Branch was created in 2007 when the city tried to put cars and traffic next to the boardwalk on Ocean Avenue in the protected paved Green Acres Linear Park. The SOA committee was formed as part of the Long Branch Coalition of Condominium Associations (LBCC) and together got thousands of signatures to petition the city not to pass the ordinance. The committees name was intended to save the boardwalk and roadway from the cities intention to put cars and traffic next to the boardwalk. The city tried to do this in 2007 and again in 2016. The city withdrew their 2007 ordinance after much of our committee’s efforts, attending city council meetings and going to the state capital to petition Green Acres. Our group then started meeting with the city to help improve, create and make the cities plan of a new boardwalk come true with public input. This included improving Ocean Avenue and Ocean Boulevard so people could get to the beach safely. Part of the plan was to be able to walk and bike all of Ocean Avenue north through Seven Presidents Park safely to Monmouth beach.

Our committee worked with the city to rename the boardwalk and bike path, "Seven Presidents Ocean Walk", displayed on the SOA logo. The SOA logo is a picture that was designed by graphic artist, Ryan Sherman, of Philadelphia, to represent these efforts and history. There are seven large waves that represent the seven United States presidents who vacationed in Long Branch and contributed to the history, culture and development of the city. The logo has the sky, sun, seagulls, lifeguard stand, beach, seven waves, boardwalk, railings and red bike path along the ocean walk.  There are also links to other important sights and past and current history of the SOA Committee. The seven colors of the logo were specifically chosen to show the Long Branch ocean front, seven president’s walk, board walk, roadway and bike path.



COMMITTEE NEWS

July 22, 2020

Hello Everyone,

Hope you are all doing well in this heat, the virus and with the crowds of people coming to the long Branch boardwalk and beaches.Weekly your ideas and suggestions plus mine are given to the mayor and beach manager to deal with the crowds on the boardwalk and beaches.

Anyone can speak to or email the mayor, beach manager or council about their issues and concerns.  The town has daily meetings to discuss and improve the beaches and boardwalk during this difficult time. I am very sad to tell you one of the oystercatchers babies is missing and has not been seen and presumed dead. If anyone has any information about it's disappearance please let me or the beach manager Stan Dzuiba know. The last sighting of the two fledglings was more than a few weeks ago. Only the two parents and one baby are left. Attached are the latest pictures of one parent and one baby bird. With the overcrowding of the boardwalks, beaches and parking many people jump the fence, ruin the dune grass and disturb the birds.  There are complaints of large unsecured canopies, loud boom boxes and bothering the baby oystercatcher babies. You can report complaints to the life guards, or ticket booths who will call security to address them. You can also call the beach office with the complaint, 732-571-5697. If you see violations call the beach office during the day and police after 4 pm.

I am happy to report to you that the Save Ocean Avenue Committee has made very good progress and has gotten support to get a complete bikeway through all of Long Branch and to start making Ocean Boulevard and Ocean Avenue safer. With Freeholder Director Tom  Arnone's support, I was able to discuss the safety of Ocean Boulevard, Ocean Avenue and a safe bikeway for Long Branch with the director of county highways and their plans for city improvements.  Our SOA committee and I have been working on this for a very long time and have met with the county and city before over the years. The county who meets with the city is very soon going to start repainting the crosswalks and lines on Ocean Boulevard, add new crosswalks and put up more safety signage along Ocean Boulevard to help pedestrians cross the boulevard safely. This will start soon.

There are also plans to fix the traffic congestion at the Brighton Avenue intersection. The county also talked about a study grant they were applying for, with the cities agreement to fix all of Ocean Boulevard and Ocean Avenue with them. The cities Green team committee recently completed a bike and pedestrian audit with pictures of a bikeway from church of the seven presidents up past the counties park of the Seven Presidents leading into Monmouth beach. This plan has specific pictures of the roadways, dangers and recommendations and will be discussed with the mayor. The SOA committee and LBCC were part of the stakeholders giving our input and ideas which were to connect the north and south already existing traffic free green acre linear parks along the oceanfront and already being used by many people. Ocean Avenue north of South Bath Avenue up to Madison Avenue is very dangerous for bikes and families with the increased traffic of beach goers and visitors on the weekend and at night. This is all good news because the county is going to start work on Ocean Boulevard after meeting again with the city and we should see results of that right away.

Hopefully this plan will be coordinated with the cities new master plan, the county’s plans for Ocean Boulevard and the cities plans for Ocean Avenue. We are also asking when there will be a second public hearing and discussion of the city’s new ten year master plan. Last year we gave our input and ideas to the city for the new bikeway to go from Brighton Avenue to Madison Avenue connecting the north and south traffic free Green Acre linear parks. When the next public discussion of the master plan is announced it will be very important for everyone who has an interest to call in and ask questions about your concerns, and support the new bikeway.

Dennis Sherman  - Chairman Save Ocean Ave Committee