Madaket Coastal Erosion
To the Nantucket Board of Selectmen:
Madaket is experiencing coastal erosion at an alarming rate. Madaket Road is estimated to have receded 44 feet since 2012, the public beach has been moved to Chicago Street, and the dune separating Hither Creek and the Atlantic Ocean has experienced two overwashes this fall. Millie’s Bridge and Ames Avenue are increasingly vulnerable to storm surge and erosion. Should the bridge become impassable, the more than 50 homeowners on Smith’s Point and Jackson Point would be denied access to their properties, and the beautiful beaches and recreational activities on the north side of the bridge would be unavailable to all Nantucket residents and visitors.
Timely action is needed. Ames Avenue and Millie’s Bridge, both Town owned assets, provide the only road access to Smith’s Point and Jackson Point. If those structures are lost, Smith’s Point and Jackson Point become inaccessible without a boat.
The 2014 Nantucket Coastal Management Plan outlined measures to protect Madaket Road and Ames Avenue, but did not include specific measures to insure access across Hither Creek should Millie’s Bridge and/or Ames Avenue become impassable.
We ask that the Town of Nantucket focus immediately on both short and long-term alternatives that provide access for property owners and visitors if Millie’s Bridge is no longer available. Please act now to develop a plan to provide access to property taxpayers and visitors to Smith’s Point and Jackson Point.