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Sandy

New Jersey News

Thousands Flock to Jersey Shore for Post-Sandy Marathon

Sunday, May 05, 2013

About 12,000 runners competed in the New Jersey Marathon Sunday amid cheering crowds and tighter security. It was the first marathon in New Jersey since Sandy devastated the Shore, and since last month's bombings at the Boston marathon.

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WNYC News

Waiting for the Phone to Ring, 6 Months After the Storm

Sunday, May 05, 2013

More than six months after Sandy, some New Yorkers are still waiting for their land line and internet service to come back.

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Transportation Nation

Feds Give Amtrak $30 Million for Northeast Corridor Sandy Rebuilding

Friday, May 03, 2013

WNYC

Amtrak is getting reimbursed for the $20 million it spent pumping water out of flooded train tunnels during Sandy and additional money to fix infrastructure damaged in the storm. The federal government will give $30 million to the publicly subsidized company, which has said it suffered $60 million in damages from Sandy and needs $250 million to adequately prepare for the next storm

For comparison, the NY MTA, which runs the NYC subway and commuter rail lines was much harder hit in its miles of electrified underground tunnels. The MTA estimates $5 billion in losses with several billion more needed to prepare for future storms. That agency has received $2 billion in federal relief funds with another $6 billion on the way. 

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WNYC News

In Staten Island, a Post-Sandy Rumor Mill

Friday, May 03, 2013

WNYC

The information that owners of Sandy-damaged homes need to make decisions is at least a month from being released. As they wait, the rumors circulate.

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WNYC News

City: Evacuation Rate During Sandy Dangerously Low

Friday, May 03, 2013

Only a third of New York City residents in the most vulnerable coastal areas of the city evacuated before Sandy, according to a survey released Friday.

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WNYC News

Life After Sandy: Fire Island Rebounds

Friday, May 03, 2013

City dwellers are beginning to turn their attention to weekend getawaysat  the beaches of Long Island. On Fire Island, business owners are still cleaning up from Sandy, but are promising to be ready for the crowds this season.

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WNYC News

Sandy Damage Shutters Symbol of US Immigration Until Next Year

Thursday, May 02, 2013

For more than a hundred years, visitors have been passing through Ellis Island. But since it opened as a national park, instead of the poor, huddled masses entering the 19th century building it's their descendents and tourists streaming in. All that changed after Sandy, whose flood waters covered the entire island.

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WNYC News

A Post-Sandy Answer to the Beachfront W.C.

Wednesday, May 01, 2013

Visitors to many New York City beaches later this month will be met with an unusual sight: giant boxes held aloft on pillars and supports.

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WNYC News

Future of the Rockaways Hinges on a Successful Summer

Wednesday, May 01, 2013

On the Rockaway peninsula in Queens catastrophic damages from Sandy are still visible, and many residents and business owners wonder if anyone will come to a beach that’s still under construction this summer.

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WNYC News

Judge to Decide if Sandy Victims Must Leave Hotels

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Hundreds of Sandy victims still without permanent homes are waiting for a judge to decide whether they must leave the hotels they've been staying in since shortly after the storm hit.

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WNYC News

Con Ed Execs Return Bonuses

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

WNYC

Consolidated Edison executives are returning $614,400 in bonuses they got apiece for leading the utility during a tumultuous 2012 that including Sandy when Lower Manhattan was plunged into darkness for days.

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WNYC News

11B Gallons of Sewage Dumped Into Waterways After Sandy: Report

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

study from the group Climate Central says northeast waterways were swimming in sewage following Sandy — much of it untreated.

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WNYC News

Sandy Damage Prompts Some to Walk Away Instead of Stay

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

WNYC

In some places, Sandy’s wrath is a reason to walk away from their homes as opposed to staying on and fixing them up.

 

 

 

For many Sandy’s wrath is a memory that happened six months ago.

But some home buyers and sellers are just now feeling its power surge through the real estate market in coastal areas.

 

“Not one property has closed to date in Sea Bright since the storm,” said Donna Markowitz, broker-manager at Gloria Nilson and company real estate in Keyport, New Jersey.

 

In parts of New Jersey, coastal properties are selling for much less than they were worth before the storm. 

 

Many homes that were flooded will have to be raised up to new flood elevation standards set by FEMA.  And they’ll also incur increased costs for flood and homeowner’s insurance.  Those increased expenses, combined with the uncertainty of what new regulations will be, could be spooking buyers and coaxing sellers to drop their prices.

 

“There’s the uncertainty of the [FEMA flood] zones - we don’t have anything firm yet, we don’t have firm maps or elevations,” said Steve Acropolis, the Mayor of Brick Township, New Jersey.

 

The uncertainty is causing some to walk away. 

 

In the working class town of Keyport on the Raritan Bay, two Sandy-damaged homes on the market in Keyport are on the market for about $70,000.

 

“Before Sandy, they would have been, in this market,  like a $240 to 250,000 home,” said agent Markowitz.

 

It’s a similar situation in tony Mantaloking, father south, where only one home sold on the open market since the storm struck. 

 

“It was on the market for $5.5 million before the storm.  The house was destroyed [during Sandy] and sold for $2.7 million, about half the value after the storm,” said Peter Zanowic, with Gloria Nilson and Company real estate in Bay Head, NJ.

 

 

 

According to Zillow, the online real estate site, there’s not enough data yet to determine via sale listings, if there’s a high volume of short selling going on.

 

But Zillow economist Svenja Gudell says there is added pressure on owners of homes seriously damaged by Sandy, particularly in the Garden State.

 

She said that in New Jersey, 25 percent of homeowners with a mortgage were underwater before Sandy hit, meaning they owe more on their homes than their property is worth.

 

“You’re getting the double whammy if you will,” Gudell said of those homeowners. “Not only were you underwater before, but now you’re even worse off because your home has been damaged.”

 

And some of those financially ‘underwater’ are more likely to sell at distressed property price instead of trying to cobble together a way to pay for repairs on what is already, a losing investment for them.

 

“That makes it easier for people to say: ‘It’s going to take so long for me to reach positive equity again in my home, I’m going to walk away from my home now,’ ” Gudell said.

 

This homeowner fatigue is expected to shake out overtime, experts say. 

As powerful as Sandy’s storm surge was, it’s not likely to influence buyers of shore properties a few years from now, if tradition is any guide. 

 

“The older homes that were destroyed, there will be brand new homes in there.  So the houses will be worth more, the market will rebound, and people will want to live here and spend money for it,” said Zanowic.

 

But some fear the rebuilding will force working class families away from the beach.

 

“It’s going to change the character of some towns, and I worry about young people being able to afford being on the water,” added Steve Acropolis, Mayor of Brick.

 

But in some storm-ravaged areas, like Long Beach, and on Long’s Island’s North Shore too, sales this spring have been less affected by Sandy.

 

“Waterfront [property] is a limited commodity [here] and it still commands the high numbers,” said Risa Ziegler, a licensed broker with Douglas Elliman in Huntington, Long Island.

 

The North Shore still lacks inventory, and it’s a desirable area.

 

Long Island’s South Shore sustained much more Sandy damage, and initially, home prices of flooded properties fell sharply.

 

But now, in anticipation of summer, sales are trending upwards.

 

“When Sandy first hit, I thought my career was over, I didn’t know how I’d sell another house here,” said Long Beach real estate agent Joyce Coletti.

 

But over time some started buying damaged homes on the South shore, and prices began rising, even for homes that had been gutted after storm damage.  In Long Beach, nine homes burnt after a car blew up during Sandy.

 

“I had a bidding war on burnt homes, that were burnt to the ground,” and we sold them,” added Coletti.

 

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WNYC News

Would-Be Homebuyers Inspect Repaired Basement, Mimosas in Hand

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Realtors go the extra mile to sell in a neighborhood vulnerable to storms.

+ Sandy Damage Prompts Some to Walk Away

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New Jersey News

Gov. Christie Outlines Sandy Recovery Plan

Monday, April 29, 2013

Six months after Sandy, Governor Chris Christie’s message to New Jersey residents is that more help is on the way. 

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WNYC News

Union Beach’s Sandy Recovery Requires ‘Patience’

Monday, April 29, 2013

While the most badly damaged structures in Union Beach, N.J.,  are being totally demolished, more than 1,700 homes and rentals — or about 80 percent of all the borough’s dwellings — sustained at least some damage when storm surges enveloped the community last October. 

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Transportation Nation

Slideshow: NJ Transit's Hoboken Terminal, Six Months After Sandy

Monday, April 29, 2013

The 106-year-old historically significant terminal is a Beaux-Arts beauty that boasts Tiffany glass. But immediately following Sandy, it played host to five feet of Hudson River water. Today, it's being rehabilitated.

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The Brian Lehrer Show

Brian Lehrer Show: Six Months After Sandy

Monday, April 29, 2013

It's been six months since Hurricane Sandy caused flooding and destruction throughout the region. Matthew Schuerman, WNYC editor, and Scott Gurian, freelance reporter, discuss their reporting on the recovery, from the re-building in Long Beach, Long Island to how federal money is being used to improve infrastructure.

Plus: your six-month calls. How is the recovery going in your area? If your home was affected by the storm, have you decided whether to stay and do nothing, to renovate for flood prevention, or to move away from the shore altogether? Call 212-433-9692 or post your story here.

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WNYC News

Six Months After Sandy: Calm in the Storm

Monday, April 29, 2013

I’ve lived in the East Village, in lower Manhattan, for twenty years— in a narrow railroad apartment that I like to think of as quaint, where the living room is only eight feet wide. My walls are lined with bookshelves from the living room to the kitchen, because I’m a critic and a translator. If I’m home, which I often am, I’m either reading or writing. When Hurricane Sandy approached last October, and the skies darkened and the wind started howling, I rubbed my hands in anticipation, remembering the tornadoes of my Midwestern youth. This one, I thought, unlike Hurricane Irene, was truly going to hit.  Curling up in an armchair by the window, I started reading, listening as branches thrashed and trash cans clanged like cymbals on the sidewalk below. And then the power went out. It stayed out for five days.

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WNYC News

6 Months After Sandy, Rebuilding but Not Necessarily Better

Monday, April 29, 2013

The city of Long Beach broke ground this weekend on its new boardwalk: 2.2 miles long, it will feature special braces that will tie the planks to the supports and a concrete wall that will hang down from in front of the boardwalk like a skirt, to break the waves the next time the Atlantic rises up against it.

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