A replacement for the Bonner Bridge, connecting the northern Outer Banks with Hatteras Island, is finally going to be built. Twenty-five years after the bridge’s life expectancy has passed, the North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) and the Southern Environmental Law Center (SELC) have reached an agreement that will allow a new parallel span to be built just to the west of the existing bridge, and the old bridge will be demolished.
One of the most fulfilling parts about living on the Outer Banks is taking part in raising money for various charities. It’s almost always local charities, because one of the things that defines the Outer Banks community is that we take care of our own. National charities and nonprofits do not have as strong of a presence in the local community.
I was hooked the first time I went to Ladles in Kill Devil Hills and tasted their turkey chile. It’s just spicy enough to get your attention but not enough to kill the flavors of beans cooked to perfection and plenty of ground turkey. That bowl guaranteed a return visit.
When Laurie Harvin and Vicky Katona opened their doors in December of 2014, I remember remarking to a friend that it seemed like a dangerous, maybe even foolhardy strategy for an Outer Banks business.
On the road to Wanchese, there’s a large modern building that appears to rise from the marsh. The Coastal Studies Institute (CSI) building is 90,000 square feet and a wonder of engineering. Locally, it has become an important part of Outer Banks life with schools and nonprofits taking advantage of its facilities. Beyond Dare County, it has developed a reputation in scientific circles for the cutting edge research of the resident scientists, and much of their research focuses on what’s happening along our coastlines.
With a February 2015 announcement that a large section of the ocean off the Kitty Hawk shoreline would be available for commercial wind energy development, North Carolina moves towards the top of the list of potential energy production from a renewable resource. The Kitty Hawk site is one of three sites off the North Carolina coast identified by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM). The site, located 26 nautical miles offshore, will be barely visible from the beach.