New Jersey state legislators, on a Thursday visit to seaside communities devastated by Superstorm Sandy, got an up-close look at the remnants of the now-iconic Jet Star roller coaster, which dropped from a pier into the ocean.
Casino Pier, on which the roller coaster sat, will be repaired for an estimated $45 million project, and the roller coaster will be removed from the ocean floor, said Seaside Heights, NJ Police Chief Thomas Boyd said.
Though there was talk of allowing the roller coaster to stay in the water as a tourist attraction, those plans have been abandoned.
In Seaside Heights, much of the boardwalk debris has been cleared, and crews are already preparing the area for a new boardwalk to be constructed.
"We'll rebuild the boardwalk, all the debris will be cleaned up," said Boyd.
Boyd estimated it will be another month, or longer, before residents can repopulate Seaside Heights on a permanent basis.
Just north of Seaside Heights, the Ortley Beach section of Toms River Township was dealing with its own storm woes.
"This is the area that most people say was Ground Zero for Hurricane Sandy," said Toms River Police Chief Michael Mastronardy.
The legislators also got an up-close look at the devastated Camp Osborn neighborhood in Brick, where about 60 homes burned to the ground during Sandy, presumably due to natural gas fires.
Editor's note: This article previously was published with more pictures and in more detail by Brick Patch in New Jersey.