DSPR Receives $1.6 Million from fema for repairs
TThe Office of Disaster Recovery (O.D.R.) announced Thursday that the Federal Emergency Management Agency has obligated $1,599,393 to the Department of Sports, Parks, and Recreation (DSPR) to refurbish recreational facilities at two St. Croix beaches.
FEMA’s Public Assistance Program will fund the replacement of damaged beachfront facilities at the Fort Frederik Beach in Frederiksted and Cramer Park on the east end of St. Croix, said the O.D.R.
The concession building at Cramer Park and the bathhouse at the Ft. Frederik Beach suffered severe wind and water damage from Hurricanes Irma and Maria, resulting in water infiltration and exterior damage to various building components limiting the availability of services to locals and tourists alike.
The concession stand at the east end beach has been closed since the 2017 storms, but temporary repairs were made to the bathrooms at Ft. Frederik permitting limited use, the O.D.R. said.
“The Department of Sports, Parks, and Recreation is excited to restore these facilities for access for the people that turn to our beaches for exercise and relaxation,” said the Commissioner of the Department of Sports, Parks, and Recreation, Calvert White. “The Department is pushing forward to get repairs made to these popular local beaches and all our facilities.”
Pavilions at both locations were demolished, leaving only two standing but leaning at Cramers Park. These spaces are community favorites for beach days, concerts, meetings, retreats, and parties. Five pavilions will be rebuilt at Cramer Park and one at Fort Frederik, the O.D.R. said.
The Ft. Frederik Beach across from the former Paul E. Joseph Stadium is the closest beach to the Ann Abramson Pier. It is easily accessible and within walking distance for cruise ship passengers and visitors to downtown Frederiksted.
“Refurbishing these locations will not only reinstate these recreational areas for our community but also improve St. Croix’s tourism product,” said Adrienne L. WilliamsOctalien, O.D.R. director. “Accessing the funds to restore these facilities is a step in the right direction. ODR is working closely with the agencies to ensure projects get started and bring our facilities back online.”
Damaged concession stand at Cramer Park Beach By OFFICE OF DISASTER RECOVERY