WILMINGTON – A portion of the riverfront edge near the intersection of Water and Princess streets collapsed over the weekend when a bulkhead owned and maintained by the United States Coast Guard failed due to heavy rains from Tropical Storm Hermine.
According to the City of Wilmington, the Coast Guard is working on a short-term fix for the bulkhead while federal funding is secured for long-term repairs. The area of the collapse is near the next phase of the Riverfront Park Improvement Project, a city-funded project currently underway on other portions of Water Street.
While the Coast Guard is responsible for taking care of the damaged riverfront, the city is in charge of removing three trees near the collapse that were already slated for removal.
“We’re just going to go ahead and take care of those now,” said city spokesman Dylan Lee of the three Bradford pear trees. “Even though that’s Coast Guard property, we’re taking the lead on any streetscape improvements for the project, so the trees would be our responsibility.”
According to Lee, no timetable has been set yet for that portion of the Riverfront Park Improvement Project. The city cannot move forward with their portion until the Coast Guard does their work, which is yet to be funded.