Beach Camping Returns to the Island
by: Rod Rice, June 26, 2009 10:06:52 pm
Before Hurricane Ike destroyed the park, just east of Jamaca Beach, there were about 150 beachfront campsites. They were mostly all destroyed.
"We have comeback with three loops, smaller versions of what we had before. Each loop contains 12 campsites. And, of those, all three loops will have water connections and initially one loop will have 50 amp service for RVers as well."
Justin Rhodes is the regional director of state parks in southeast Texas. He says the park has been reopening in stages since earlier this spring and that down the road it will get a full make over.
"You'll see a new Galveston Island State Park within the next 5 to 7 years. What we're doing now is an interim fix. We kind of faced with the choice here; either we keep the park closed for the next five to seven years while we master plan, get the environmental clearances and reconstruct it or we go back with something on the small scale in the interim."
And that, of course is what's been done. Bayside camping has been open and the park has recently returned to a seven day a week schedule.
Rhodes says Parks and Wildlife has spent about 200-thousand dollars so far on the park. He says TxDOT did a tremendous amount of debris clearance. And he said the park's rehab wouldn't have been possible without the always dependable volunteers.
"They've been a great motivation and driving force for us in helping getting the park to the point it is now."
You can see other videos of the damage done to the park and some pictures before the storm at the Galveston Island State Park website .
Rod Rice, KUHF Houston Public Radio News.