Cape May Naval Air Station (former) Development – Cape May NJ

Description

The WPA conducted a large-scale reconstruction project at the Cape May Naval Air Station, located at the easternmost part of Cape May. A thorough history of the installation can be found at Abandoned & Little Known Airfields (airfields-freeman.com). There are few traces of the New Deal- and WWII-era installation remaining, though an abandoned runway is still visible. The facility is now the U.S. Coast Guard Training Center.

Cape May County Gazette wrote in 1936:
“One of the finest WPA projects granted this section is the rebuilding of the U.S. naval Air Station at Cape May, on which work has already been started. The $130,000 project is of more than usual importance for a number of reasons. The field, in its present condition, is hazardous to airmen. Its reconstruction will give work to 300 unemployed men from every part of the county. The completed job will cost neither the City of Cape May nor the county a penny.”

According to a DoD Heritage Assessment, WPA projects at the old Naval Air Station included:

  • “Improve buildings and grounds”
    Official Project Number: 765‐22‐2‐2
    Total project cost: $75,000.00
    Sponsor: Commanding Officer, 4th Naval District, U.S. Navy
  • “Construct and improve public access roads and drainage facilities”
    Official Project Number: 165‐1‐22‐479
    Total project cost: $159,953.00
    Sponsor: New Jersey State Highway Department
  • “Rehabilitate and provide extensions to buildings”
    Official Project Number: 165‐2‐22‐306
    Total project cost: $1,669,802.00
    Sponsor: Commandant, 3rd Naval District, U.S. Navy
  • “Construct and improve facilities and grounds”
    Official Project Number: 165‐3‐22‐314
    Total project cost: $253,207.00
    Sponsor: Commandant, 3rd Naval District, U.S. Navy
  • “Construct buildings”
    Official Project Number: 265‐3‐22‐117
    Total project cost: $107,465.00
    Sponsor: Commandant, 3rd Naval District, U.S. Navy

Source notes

Nationwide Context, Inventory, and Heritage Assessment of Works Progress Administration and Civilian Conservation Corps Resources on Department of Defense Installations, July 2009 (page C-116).

http://www.airfields-freeman.com/NJ/Airfields_NJ_CapeMay.htm

"The Dawn," a New Jersey WPA publication; October 1936 issue, page 25. Found at the Jersey City Public Library's New Jersey Room.

Cape May County Gazette, Cape May Court House, NJ, Sept. 4, 1936.

Project originally submitted by Evan Kalish on February 21, 2018.

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Location Info


Coast Guard Training Center
Cape May, NJ

Coordinates: 38.945544, -74.882091

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