Clayton shoreline improvements ‘to be great asset’ to community

Published: Apr. 24, 2023 at 5:51 PM EDT
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CLAYTON, New York (WWNY) - Eroded and strewn with debris, a Clayton shoreline is just weeks away from getting a $5 million state-funded facelift.

The riverwalk beside the Thousand Islands Harbor Hotel is a popular place to stroll during the summer months.

But the shoreline there could use some sprucing up.

“The high water of 2019 wreaked havoc on this, so we’re going to get all of this excavated out of here,” said Lance Peterson, the town supervisor.

Within the next few weeks, work will begin on 480 feet of shoreline between Frink Park and the Clayton Harbor Municipal Marina. The project will also repair the riverwalk.

“We’re gonna excavate that out, put in about 500 feet of sheet piling, backfill it, landscape it, and it’s going to be a great asset to the community,” said Peterson.

It’s part of the state’s Resiliency and Economic Development Initiative, funding to redevelop shorelines slammed by high water levels and high winds in 2019. The town of Clayton got more than $4.6 million.

“With the high water, it undermined a lot of this stuff, and we found it deteriorating pretty rapidly,” said Peterson.

This shoreline project is one of three REDI projects for the town of Clayton. In 2022, improvements began on the boat launch on Grindstone Island. Peterson says as of Monday that project is pretty much done.

“As a matter of fact, we just got word today. They’ve finished up with 99% of that. We just have a few little things to do there, which we’ll see completed in a couple weeks,” he said.

The project isn’t just for looks. District 1 Legislator Robert Cantwell says it will provide protection to the strip.

“Driving the sheet pile and reinforcing that shoreline will not only stabilize the shoreline but the riverwalk itself, and the integrity of part of the lawn that integrates into the hotel,” he said.

Peterson anticipates the work will be complete before the 2024 season.