7 Years Since Sandy: Where We Were To Where We Are


Seven years later, and while there’s still more to be done, very few remnants of Sandy’s destruction remain. The boardwalk has been in place since 2017. Most burned down homes from Rockaway to Breezy Point have been rebuilt. Most Build it Back projects have been completed, although many are still dealing with the headaches of the aftermath. Most businesses reopened, with the latest, finally, being the Harbor Light. There’s no doubt that Rockaway has made a strong comeback after the storm that tried to knock us down. For many, the only remnants of Sandy that remain now—are the memories. Here’s a little look back at some post-Sandy scenes and where they are now and where they’re going.

Sandy took many of Rockaway’s playgrounds, but at the end of this summer, we finally got one back. The new Sandpiper Playground opened around Beach 107th in August, and there are still many NYC Parks Shore projects planned for the next few years, especially along Shore Front Parkway.

Sandy tried to take down many businesses, but owners remained resilient. Dalton’s Grill was one of the first businesses to reopen after the storm and served as a place of normalcy for the community. However, all good things must come to an end, or at least get a new start. Dalton’s closed in 2016 to make room for the future Rockaway Beach Hotel, which is steadily making progress towards its spring 2020 opening. As for Chef Mike Dalton, he’s now over at Happy Jack’s.

Speaking of changes…while sand piled high around a flooded Irish Circle, the restaurant reopened after Sandy, only to close in May 2014 after filing for bankruptcy. However, the restaurant came to life again when it underwent a major internal revamp and opened as Community House in August 2015. However more change is still to come. Community House officially closed on October 19. The property was sold to the Marcal Group earlier this year and the iconic building is expected to be replaced by 60 condos.

Photos by Steph Goralnick, Lauren Hawk, Vivian Carter and Katie McFadden.