The trailer on the corner across the street from Maho Bay beach, above, will be torn down as soon as VINP officials work to make the area suitable to accommodate parking.
As Island Roads’ crew nears completion of the North Shore Road Rehabiliation project (see related story on page five), V.I. National Park officials are gearing up to improve Maho Bay beach parking.
The plan calls for removing the trailor located at the Maho Bay corner heading toward the Anaberg Sugar Mill Ruins and turning the area into a parking lot, according to VINP Superintendent Mark Hardgrove.
“The trailor is getting torn down and put in the dumpsters that are already on site,” said Hardgrove. “We’ll be opening up the majority of the area there by removing the bush. Then we’ll use sand, filter cloth and gravel on the ground for the parking area.”
“We hope to be able to fit about 35 cars in there,” Hardgrove said.
Park officials will also relocate the entrance to the former trailor, soon-to-be parking lot, further along the road away from the corner and will likely install a speed bump in the area as well, Hardgrove added.
“We’ve opened up the corner so you can see through a bit, but we’re going to move the entrance away from the turn still,” said the VINP superintendnet. “We’re probably putting a speed bump in near Maho Bay somewhere.”
The project is designed to stop cars from parking along the shoreline in order to halt the erosion in the area, explained Hardgrove.
“We must rebuild that seawall there and keep the cars off the sealine,” he said. “With cars on there, your shoulder gets down to 18-inches deep which allows water to undercut the pavement.”
Park officials will also start repairs to the Catherineberg and Susanaberg Roads, which are both designated park roads and have both been seriously eroded by recent rains and flooding, according to Hardgrove.
“King Hill Road is being done by the territory, but we have about $400,000 plus of work to do at Susanaberg and Catherineberg,” said the VINP superintendent.
“Catherineberg is closed on the park side and it really needs cement repair. It’s a waste of money to put in gravel on those steep hills when it will just wash into the bay below.”
In order to improve those roadways, however, VINP needs additional funds, Hardgrove explained.
“Those aren’t emergencies,” he said. “We have to really focus on the emergencies until we get additional funding. We were able to get $45,000 at the end of last year to hire 10 people to open the trail heads there.”
“We didn’t get much beyond that though,” said Hardgrove.