I am writing concerning the probable replacement of the Oceanic Bridge spanning the Navesink
River in Monmouth County, New Jersey. This handsome bascule bridge connects the towns of
Rumson and Locust and is vital to both communities.
It seems clear to the Monmouth County Engineer that the bridge is in very poor condition
and must be replaced. Both the Engineer and the Friends of the Oceanic Bridge Association
believe the new bridge should be as similar in design as possible to the existing structure.
The problem is that a 70-foot high fixed bridge has been suggested as the replacement.
The very thought of replacing this low-profile bascule bridge with a considerably larger high-profile
bridge is appalling. The current bridge is a superb example of the meeting of the aesthetic
with the practical. Its simple lines stretch across the water mimicking the hills
beyond, enhancing not obstructing the natural beauty of the setting. A high profile
commercial-type construction would shatter the uniqueness and serenity of the quiet residential area,
not to mention the destruction of valuable property on both sides.
Other considerations include: the impact on local marinas; the property values of homes and businesses
along the river; the effect on pedestrian and bicycle traffic, and the loss of views almost
unparalleled in this part of the state.
The Federal Government is responsible for funding such a project and favors the high-profile fixed bridge.
I urge you to help us persuade those in charge that a bascule bridge having the same character
as the current one is infinitely preferrable.