Ventnor and Margate are still making improvements in their cities even with a setback from COVID-19

The Ventnor Fishing Pier reopened last week with more bathrooms and a new piermaster’s office. Commissioner Lance Landgraf said the reopening was only pushed back a week or two because of the virus.

The city had planned to add a concession stand to the pier, but Landgraf said the price came in too high. To still offer food, the city put out a request for proposal for a vendor with a pushcart, but no applications came in by deadline.

“The building came out wonderful,” he said. “We’re thrilled with the design team. The day after we opened, we had our biggest sale of memberships ever sold, over $5,000 worth of memberships.”

Annual pier fees are $150 for adults, $125 for seniors and $40 for children.

The city also purchased a parcel of land at 6510 Ventnor Ave. to convert into a pocket park. The property used to hold a three-story building that was severely damaged by a fire last summer.

The park will eventually have benches, lighting, Wi-Fi and shrubbery.

To design the park, Landgraf had planned to use drafting and design students from the Atlantic County Institute of Technology, “but COVID-19 just really shut that down,” he said.

“Stone and gravel are there right now, but it’s not ideal,” he said. “We might just set up picnic tables for takeout.”

While original plans did not permit restaurants to use the space for outdoor dining, the commissioner said the city is working with area eateries to allow them to use the space, temporarily, due to indoor dining restrictions.

In Margate, an inflatable water park, Island Aqua Park, received site plan approval and opened July 4. Dredging for the park, which is at 9501 Amherst Ave., is expected to begin this winter to expand it. The owner of the park Maggie Day, who worked on the project with her husband Tom Tice, said, she believes, "It is the largest aqua park we know of in all of New Jersey."

The park will operate seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Memorial Day to Labor Day. Day and Tice also own Island Water Sports in Stone Harbor.

Contact: 609-272-7239 Twitter @ACPress_CJ

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