City of Charleston post-Hurricane Irma update
It has been a very active hurricane season so far this year and the effects from wind and flooding caused by Hurricane Irma were numerous across the entire city of Charleston. On Daniel Island, the majority of damage was caused by the wind and wave action from the storm. With that, I wanted to provide the community with some updates on the work the city is doing to repair damages caused by the storm.
After four days of diving in and around the area of the Children’s Park dock, divers finally found the gangplank that was ripped off the pier and floater during Irma. Cape Romain Contractors has been hired by the city to repair the dock, and to date, they have been able to raise the gangplank from the sea floor, put it on a barge and move it to their facility to be repaired. The manufacturer of the gangplank is located in Florida, and so, as you can imagine, there is going to be a delay in getting parts for the repairs. It is anticipated that the parts will hopefully be in and the repairs completed within the next few weeks and the gangplank can then be reinstalled.
Two of the boardwalks that run north along the waterfront trail from Children’s Park to Governors Park also experienced significant damage during Irma. Unfortunately, the damage to both boardwalks will require substantial work in order to be redesigned and replaced. The damage to the boardwalks was not limited to just visual damage, but the structural supports were also severally damaged and are unsafe. This work will take a considerable amount of time and funding to complete. At this point, the city is working to determine the full scope of work that will be needed to complete the repairs and will then be able to determine a timeline for completion. I will keep the community informed as we get further updates on those repairs.
Debris removal across the entire city continues to be a priority for the Environmental Services Department. Republic Services who contracts with the city for trash and garbage collection on Daniel Island continues to work to collect all the excess debris that was created by the storm. The city is also supplementing Republic’s collections efforts with its staff as well. The city hopes to have all the excess debris collected within the coming week.
Living in Charleston offers us a terrific quality of life but it also unfortunately means we have to deal with hurricanes and tropical storms. Daniel Island has fared well over the last couple of years – first with Hurricane Matthew in 2016 and more recently with Hurricane Irma. I am very thankful that the residents of our community prepared appropriately for these storms and our losses were limited to those things that can be replaced. I will continue to provide further updates on these repairs and replacements as they become available and hope that the rest of this year’s storm season is less eventful.
Daniel Island resident Gary White has served on Charleston City Council, representing District 1, since 2007.