Storm-battered coastal areas in NJ, NY race to fix boardwalks - some without the boards

Wayne Parry, The Associated Press

SEASIDE HEIGHTS, N.J. - Coastal communities pummeled by Superstorm Sandy are rushing to rebuild their boardwalks in time for next summer.

They're in a race to finish by the end of May to retain tourist money they will need next year more than ever.

Seaside Heights N.J., gets 75 per cent of its budget from tourism, and is moving quickly to rebuild the boardwalk where MTV's "Jersey Shore" was filmed.

Belmar N.J., is spending $20 million to rebuild its boardwalk, and several other shore towns are doing likewise.

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg has decreed no new wooden boardwalks will be built. He favours concrete as more durable.

The rush to rebuild has also touched off a debate over whether to use rainforest wood.