They Brake for Shellfish

Allan Appel Photo Marine life may be getting the supreme shaft in the Gulf, but not in Fair Haven. Restoration of Dover Beach Park and its seawall is on budget and on schedule.

That schedule includes suspending all work on the seaward side between June 1 and Sept. 30 to allow the shellfish to spawn.

Area 14-year-olds Devonte Torres, Torey McDougal, and Luis Saez took a break from fishing Tuesday and were enjoying the view of Q River from some of the 975 feet of new concrete capstone being installed along the seawall.

According to City Plan Department landscape architect David Moser, the contractor G.L. Capasso is continuing to work on the capstone, masonry repointing (2252 feet), cleaning the wall, and rebuilding 882 feet, including these spiffy new steps.

However, as part of the agreement with the state Department of Environmental Protection, Moser reportedl: “The DEP does not allow any work to occur seaward of the wall between June 2 and Sept. 30 in order to protect shellfish in the water so the contractor cannot do any work from the waterside until October.”

In October, when work near the water resumes, that will include planting 3,300 cordgrass plants in order to protect and encourage the marine creatures to continue to enjoy Fair Haven, as do the humans.

Tree Plantings & Playgrounds

Meanwhile Tuesday night the Friends of Dover Beach, which has spearheaded the renewal of the park with its panoramic vista, launched a new season of tree plantings.

Bret Bissell of the Friends and Jen Baldwin of Urban Resources Initiative were busy planting an autumn purple ash along Front Street.

Baldwin, a community forester with URI, said the ash continues the line of three cherry trees planted last year to the south. She said it would provide shade and color. Upcoming plantings include two sugar maples

As the ash went into the ground, 20 area kids streamed in to work on their butterfly garden nearby. Click here to read about that. And here to read articles on the community planning that went into the project.

Baldwin said the sugar maples, unlike the ash, do not do well with the salt that is drawn in from the roadway in winter; they will be planted farther toward the water.

The littlest planter, four-month-old Sami Khatib, is Friends’ founder Pat Bissell’s first grandchild. Everyone hoped he would grow up to enjoy the full maturity of the ash, which is expected to live 80 to 100 years.

David Moser also reported that the city has awarded the contract to build two new playgrounds in the park and install new lighting. That contract, for $220, 417, went to Mountainview Landscapes and Lawn Care, which built the fountain on the New Haven Green.

The funding for the park restoration and sea wall comes from $519,000 set aside by the developers of the Q Terrace Hope VI project and $123,000 from the parks department capital budget.

Work on the playgrounds should begin this summer.

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posted by: Lisa on June 9, 2010  4:48pm

Thank you to everyone involved! that is such a nice spot, and it needed some tlc.