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The Journals are the premier publications for high-quality, hyperlocal news and advertising in Monmouth County, New Jersey

Feb 10, 2020

Keansburg’s Resurgence Has Residents and Developers Talking

By Matt Kitchen, Keansburg School District Board Member

Keansburg for a long period of time was a popular resort town that has faced many natural disasters over the years which changed the town tremendously. In 1960, Hurricane Donna wiped out most of the waterfront area, which was the major draw to the borough. Then just 20 years later, a fire destroyed several famous attractions to town like the Keansburg Bowling Alley, The Dance Hall Auditorium and the Casino Theatre. After hurricanes and fires destroying lots of the main popular activities of the town, it caused a shift in the life of Keansburg. Most people who owned summer homes sold them to people to live in year-round.

We have had lots of attractions that have stayed intact or rebuilt, the biggest being Keansburg Amusement Park, which in 1996, even added a water park. The days of the bowling alleys and movie theaters in the borough were now long gone, and the township struggled to gain back its allure to tourists and people from out of town, aside from the summer months.

As always though, Keansburg had survived, and we are once again starting to thrive and rebuild to become a truly great spot to enjoy not only in summer but all year. In the last several years, many new businesses have opened after a long recovery from Superstorm Sandy. Some of the businesses include Kazia Rae’s Restaurant, The Institute Muay Thai, O’Waffles, Raritan Bay Brewing Company, Hudson Coffee Co., Jillaney’s Luncheonette and Dollar General. We now have a luxury apartment complex with beautiful views of the New York Skyline right on Beach Way Avenue across from the beach. Right next door is going to be Pier 260 which will have rooftop seating with views of New York Skyline as well.

Developers are realizing the potential of Keansburg and are buying property all over town — all of this combined with the new Recreation Department holding tons of family activities throughout town most of the year which can be found on their Facebook page. Our beaches are free. During the summer, there are wheelchair-accessible ramps to help people make it down to the beach which would have been impossible before, which is truly amazing. Keansburg is shifting toward more positive change, and people and developers are starting to notice. In 2015, Realtor Magazine listed Keansburg as one of the top 10 affordable beach towns in the country. As well as beautiful homes for sale cheaper than in surrounding areas, the town offers free preschool which is amazing for the hardworking families around here.

Being a square-mile town, it is such a close-knit community which is welcoming to all walks of life. In Keansburg, you’re not just a resident but a part of a large family who looks out for each other.