Too Much Commotion

Jul 17, 2019

To the Editor:

In response to the July 3 letter (“Land Transformed”), I would also like to thank Jen’s Links for ruining the peace and quiet of the West Fifth, West Sixth Street and adjacent areas of Barnegat Light. From 10 a.m. till 10 p.m. and sometimes later, 12 hours a day, seven days a week, there is a constant drone of loud background music playing and people hollering and screaming at various times.

Being by the water, noise travels, especially after dark, and is also affected by wind direction. This mini-golf is close to being an amusement park and would fit well in Wildwood.

Traffic on Sixth Street has increased, especially on weekends and holidays. West Sixth Street between Broadway and the bay road is a county road and designated truck route. Fuel tankers, fish wagons going to the docks, tractor trailers, delivery trucks and the Island shuttle travel there daily. People are walking and riding bikes in the middle of the street. The mini-golf approved parking on Broadway is now spilling over to the golf property on West Sixth. There should be no parking on the south side of West Sixth, at least during the summer months. This would allow cars to pull in and back out safely and allow other vehicles and trucks room to go up and down Sixth Street.

This area of town has residential, general business and marine commercial zoning. The mini-golf property never had any other structure there except the Coffee Shack, which once was a gas station. It was part of Myer’s Dock, later Lighthouse Marina, and used by commercial fishermen for repairs and storage of boats.

I’ve lived here for many years and seldom was there any commotion. Now I look out my window and see the shot-crete mountain, the “gallows” and the plastic “Mary Lee.” The artist’s conception that was passed around town a few years ago and what stands there today are very different.

Just a few years ago miniature golf in Barnegat Light was not a permitted use. Mysteriously, mini-golf became a permitted use in a quiet town with a maritime history where the majority of the townspeople are not in favor of the commercialization that has taken over many shore towns. At the planning board meeting a few years back, board members made it clear to the Lackland Corp. that there were residential homes very close to the proposed mini-golf. A local resident also asked if they would close down at 9 p.m. since this would be an outdoor business, which they paid no attention to.

Borough council and planning board members would not approve this if it were in front of their house. The potential and practical use of this property could have been a bank, 9-hole miniature golf, pizza shop, laundromat, a new coffee shack, marine-related store or small shops with apartments on top. Even age-restricted housing for Barnegat Light senior citizens who wanted to cash in on their property and still remain in town would have been a better deal.

And for those who did not like the empty lot, barrier islands need all the pervious and semi-pervious open space they can find, like the old Coast Guard housing property at the end of Sixth Street.

Thomas Stone

Barnegat Light

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