Offer Free Sand for Ditch

Bulldozers yesterday moved earth and sand at the former East Deck Motel in Montauk, fortifying the property’s seaward edge. T.E. McMorrow

A beach restoration project undertaken by the new owners of the East Deck Motel in Montauk could be extended east and west of the former motel in Ditch Plain, with 1,000 cubic yards of sand added to public property there at private expense, Kim Shaw, East Hampton Town’s director of natural resources, said at a town board meeting on Tuesday.

The East Deck property owners, an ownership group called ED40 L.L.C., whose principals have not been named, have offered to extend the dune being recreated in front of the motel along the town’s Ditch Plain beach to the west, and in front of an adjacent town parking lot, known as “dirt lot,” to the east, Ms. Shaw said.

A continuous dune would be established, she said, along the beach, stretching east to the area where a rock revetment, installed by Montauk Shores Condominiums, will be scaled back according to a recent order by the state’s Department of Environmental Conservation, which found that it had exceeded what was permitted.

“This will fortify that whole area,” Ms. Shaw said, calling it a “great project.”

The Town Highway Department will repair and extend the dirt parking lot, and a pedestrian access to the beach will be created there. The East Deck owners have proposed to install beach plantings on the new dunes, as well as sand fencing, Ms. Shaw said.

The natural resources head said she has been monitoring and photographing the East Deck dune project, and that she would make sure that the work to be done on the town properties is done correctly. Sand already on site for the ongoing project will be used, she said.

“I see this as an opportunity,” Town Supervisor Larry Cantwell said. “The whole Ditch Plains beach area is still suffering the effects” of recent severe storms, he said, and “this is an offer and an opportunity that works well, because it’s consistent with the objectives that the town has already outlined.”The proposal, said Councilman Peter Van Scoyoc, is a “great opportunity to get some additional sand on the beach and build our dunes.”

In addition, Ms. Shaw said, approving the dune restoration will show “that the town also supports a soft solution to beach restoration, when a lot of people are calling for armoring.”