Ortley Beach neighbors plead with county freeholders to turn vacant lot into park

Dozens of Ortley Beach residents are demanding that Ocean County freeholders take action to build a park. The community is still reeling after Superstorm Sandy

Neighbors have their eye on a piece of

Neighbors have their eye on a piece of property owned by the Ocean County Utilities Authority. (Credit: News 12 New Jersey)

ORTLEY BEACH - Dozens of Ortley Beach residents are demanding that Ocean County freeholders take action to build a park.

The community is still reeling after Superstorm Sandy tore through many of the houses and businesses, and residents feel that public space is still missing. 

Neighbors have their eye on a piece of property owned by the Ocean County Utilities Authority. They say it's been vacant and unused for years, and want to turn it into a park.

"We don't have a place to play fetch with a dog, kick a soccer ball," says Paul Jeffrey. "Instead of having this five acres fenced off…make it available for public use." Residents say that recent community events were held in a grocery store parking lot.

The voters are petitioning the freeholders to take steps to make the park a reality, but the freeholders don't have control over the utilities authority. 

Freeholders argue that over 56 percent of the land is already preserved as park space. If that's the case, then residents want to know why recent community events were held in a grocery store parking lot.

County freeholders say they will talk to the utilities authority about a park on the lot.

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