In today's update we continue south along Seven Mile Beach Island to the upscale resort of Avalon. < CLICK ON PICS FOR A LARGER VERSION>
The island was originally covered by a thriving juniper forest, and used by the Lenni-Lenape for fishing. In 1722, Aaron Leaming purchased the land for 79 pounds, 10 shillings. It was used for grazing cattle and harvesting timber, and was uninhabited for over 100 years due to a lack of a fresh water supply. It is rumored that Captain Kidd and other pirates used the barrier islands to bury thier treasures. The Leaming family owned and retained the island for over 100 years, eventually selling it in the mid 1800s. Ownership changed hands a few times and by 1887, the Seven Mile Beach Company purchased the island , cut down the juniper forest and leveled the dunes, essentially making it flat. Avalon was incorporated as a borough from sections of Middle Township on April 18, 1892. As early as 1893, Avalon, named for the mythical island in Arthurian legend, was being advertised as a resort town.. The island developed rapidly, and in the early 1900s , the West Jersey and Seashore Railroad completed a bridge over Townsend's Inlet and extended thier Sea Isle City line south to Avalon and Stone Harbor. The railroad was the preferred method of travel to the island until the mid 1930's , when increased automobile use forced the WJ&S to end service to much of Cape May County. Today, Avalon is one of the most affluent communities on the Jersey Shore. In 2007, Forbes Magazine listed Avalon as the 65th most expensive zip code in the United States. Sports stars, televison personalities, CEOs, and country music singers are among those that have a vacation property in Avalon.
Avalon's slogan is "Cooler by a Mile". This comes from the fact that the northern end of Seven Mile Beach Island extends a mile further out into the ocean than the other barrier islands. Sea breezes in summer keep the islands a few degrees cooler than the mainland, and up to 10 to 15 degrees cooler than the urban areas 50 miles west of the coast. Conversely, in winter, warmer ocean temperatures keep the coast a bit warmer than inland areas. When snow falls on the mainland, it is often rain or sleet on the islands.
Avalon is seperated from the mainland by Ingram Thorofare, part of the Intracoastal Waterway. Ocean Drive ( County Road 619) connects to Stone Harbor in the south and Sea Isle City via the Townsend's Inlet Bridge to the north. Avalon Boulevard ( County Road 601) enters the town at 30th Street and provides Avalon's only connection to the mainland, linking up with the Garden State Parkway at exit 13.
The Old Avalon causeway (top road) runs along the southern bank of South Channel and had formerly entered the city at 21st Street. It had been replaced by a newer causeway (southern road) that now enters the island at 30th Street.
With the completion of the new causeway in the mid 20th century, the 21st Street Bridge was removed. Old Avalon Boulevard now dead ends at the Avalon Manor section of Middle Township.
Western sections of town, built on the tidemarsh before environmental regulations prohibited development of the wetlands. Avalon Channel is crossed by small bridges at (top to bottom) 21st Street, 24th Street, and 30th Street. This little island is flanked by Pennsylvania Harbor to the north and Princeton Harbor to the south.
The view south from the 21st Street Bridge.
Avalon's waterfront is some of the priciest in Cape May County. Homes here are in the seven figure range.
Most of Avalon's business district is along Dune Drive. Chic shops and upscale restaurants cater to thier wealthy clientele.
Avalon's public beaches are in the northern parts of the city. For a fee, one can share the beach with Avalon's rich and famous. Washingtonian magazine said of Avalon's beach " It's where one can go to see women in diamonds and designer swimwear on the beach"
Avalon's beaches suffer greatly from erosion due to passing hurricanes and winter storms. Not to worry. By the time the summer season begins, an expensive beach replenishment program will have the beaches restored.
Further south, 42nd Street extends west into the tidemarsh. Here is the Lagoon section of the town.
Same area, looking north.
Continuing south, a section of the original dune line and maritime forest has been preserved. This part of Avalon has some of the highest dunes on the Jersey Shore, and protects the western sections of the island from coastal storms.
In a town with high property values, this part of town has the highest. Complete with a private ocean beach, some of the dune mansions here are valued at over ten million dollars.
In recent years, this section of Avalon has become a battleground in the ongoing war between developers and environmentalists.
And finally, a shot of the island at night, looking west towards Great Sound (top, left)
Well, that's all I have for now. Thanks for viewing, and a special thanks for those who have taken the time to leave a comment. They are very much appreciated !
You should take your vision of the solutions to a regional planning board meeting and see what they say. Should make for a few interesting follow-up posts, at least.
The environmental lobby would run me out of the county once they saw what I have planned :| One of my top priorities would be the completion of the Cape May Freeway ( NJ 55) south to its planned junction with the Garden State Parkway south of exit 13. This would ease the traffic nightmare on Route 47 that occurs every summer weekend, as well as give a better evacuation route in the event of a major hurricane. The tree huggers killed this project in the 1970s, and have resisted any attempt to revive it. As a result, Route 55 is a highway to nowhere, ending in a rural section of Cumberland County, 15 miles northwest of Dennisville.
I like your use of the nbvc riprap - it looks just like the RL picture
By incorporating more MMPs, I think you definitely add to the realism of the recreation - each entry is getting better.
Thanks SimCoug! Your earlier advice and encouragement to add more ploppaples is paying off. It's no NewSorGun, but it's a lot better than I had originally planned for when I thought it was going to be a basically Sim-vanilla journal. I'm still limited to what's on the ST exchange ( no luck trying to access the LEX), so I'm doing the best with the tools that are available to me.
Each update is twice as epic as the one before.
Thanks ggamgus! This journal is as much a documentation of the learning process as it is a showcase for my SC skills. I try to learn something new with each entry and work it in. Things will get a bit more interesting the further south we go on the Cape. Re-creating the resort communities of the Wildwoods ( with its boardwalk and amusement piers ) and Cape May , with all its Victorian charm are two major challenges that I am already beginning to plan for. Should be fun !.
I am yet to become as versed as you have with using the riprap walls...
The riprap walls were easy. I used PEG's ploppable shoreline textures. All I had to do was select riprap and paint it in along the coast. Easy, just the way I like it.
Really great attention to detail and real life context, what I love about ur CJ.
The region has a lot of history, and I'm happy to pass that on. TV Shows like Jersey Shore give a distorted portrayal of the region, and I'm glad I can get a chance to set the record straight. I've lived here all my life, and as stated earlier, this is my third attempt to recreate the region in SC4 ( 5th if you count the attempts I made using SC2K and SC3K. Since SC2013 will more than likely not allow us to continue this, I'm looking at this as my last shot.
Thanks sHnozZa ! Glad you like it
How did I miss your CJ? Shame on me.
You have earned your ben's-top-ten rank fairly, since you recreated those towns so accurately...
You do use Maxis a lot, but it dosen't damage the CJs style. But way to go! Making maxis towns look so original is seen seldom in here.
I love the wooden short piers, in the last picture - Are they from the PLEX?
To sum this review up - I would start to follow you from now on. 5/5 +1
Welcome aboard ! Shame on you indeed, but better late than never ! I have nothing against the Maxis buildings. They're well lotted, and fairly represent the architecture of the region. By adding the RLS series, it adds a bit of diversity to my residential areas. If a building gets too redundant ( I've had entire blocks of identical Maxis houses and that really irked me) , I simply make what I want to stay historic and then go in with my trusty bulldozer and thin out the herd , so to speak. The small docks are nbvc piers ( available here):
Again, thanks for stopping by. Hope to see you again !