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Coastal flooding from recent storms leads to costly cleanup

Union Leader Correspondent

April 01. 2018 9:43PM
The parking lot at North Hampton State Beach is being repaved after it was severely damaged in last month's nor'easters. (Jason Schreiber)

Debris left behind from recent coastal flooding sits along the side of Route 1A in North Hampton. (Jason Schreiber)

NORTH HAMPTON — The recent nor’easters that hammered the Seacoast with significant coastal flooding have led to a big repair bill at North Hampton State Beach.

Replacing the waterlogged septic pumps at the bathhouse and fixing the damaged parking lot and sidewalks are expected to cost nearly $250,000, according to Amy Bassett, public information officer for the New Hampshire Division of Parks and Recreation.

Damage estimates along the rest of the coastline are still being added up as state crews from Parks and Recreation and the Department of Transportation continue to clean up from the back-to-back nor’easters in early March.

North Hampton State Beach was hit particularly hard as powerful waves sent water, rocks and other debris across Route 1A.

Large chunks of the parking lot were ripped out.

“There were significant holes that were caused by the water and rocks,” Bassett said.

The parking lot remains closed as crews work on a new one that still needs to be repaved.

Sidewalks must also be redone, Bassett said.

“We’re really racing against time because we really want to get this cleaned up by May 1,” she said.

If Mother Nature cooperates, Bassett said the cleanup is on track to be completed by mid- to late April.

In addition to DOT and Parks and Recreation staff, Bassett said two contractors have also been hired to help with the cleanup effort.

A drive along Route 1A reveals there’s still plenty of work to be done.

Piles of rocks and sand left over from the storms and other debris that washed up and across the busy road can still be seen.

Bassett said the work has included pushing sand back onto the beaches.

State crews aren’t the only ones still cleaning up. Local highway workers and property owners have also been trying to recover from the flooding before spring weather arrives.

Across from North Hampton State Beach, hundreds of rocks that once covered the parking lot are gone at the Beach Plum, a seafood and ice cream stand. The popular eatery opened for its 25th season on March 24.

The headline announcing the reopening on Facebook said: “We’re still standing.”

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