FIRE ISLAND, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – Another community devastated by superstorm Sandy has reopened in time for the July 4th holiday.
“Fire Island is open for business,” Brookhaven Town Supervisor Ed Romaine declared while leading a walking tour of Fire Island Pines on Monday.
“We’re here in front of a pine tree that they just planted. The original, that represented the Pines, were blown down during the storm. This is back up, all the businesses are back up you can see they’re rebuilding,” Romaine told reporters including WCBS 880’s Ginny Kosola.
The boardwalks have been repaired, businesses are open and many homes are occupied.
Even The Pavilion, the popular restaurant and night spot that burned in 2011, has been reconstructed.
“Businesses depend on literally three, three and a half months of the year to make their money. Not all of Fire Island is year-round, there are some parts that are but most of it isn’t. So it’s important that we let everyone that we’re open, it’s a great place to come and relax, it’s off the beaten path,” Romaine told 1010 WINS.
Some businesses said it’s important to get the word out that Fire Island has largely recovered from Sandy.
“We are open, we are running. Our ferry schedule is the same as it’s always been. Our ridership is a little low, which has us very concerned,” Ken Stein of the Sayville Ferry Service told Kosola.
Romaine said the effort to get Fire Island back up and running took a lot of time and effort since the island was so badly devastated in the Oct. 29 storm.
“We had crews out there working even in December getting rid of the sand that had blown across some of the homes and walkways, taking up the broken debris and carting off the island,” Romaine told 1010 WINS. “So even in December, we were working.”
The 32-mile-long barrier island was under four feet of water after Sandy, which destroyed thousands of homes.
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