The board of the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority recently approved funding for repair or replacement of street lighting along Atlantic and Pacific avenues. The CRDA has, to date, funded street lighting work on Virginia, Pennsylvania, Delaware and North Carolina avenues and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard.

The board also approved funding for a roof replacement project and design of a new HVAC system to keep Boardwalk Hall up to the high standards it deserves. Both projects will ensure the comfort of our performers and guests and maintain the hall’s status as one of the top arenas of its size in the country.

The CRDA board approved funding for a feasibility study for a Garden State Discovery Museum project. The plan is to take the second floor of The Claridge Hotel and turn it into a unique hands-on experience for children and their families. It would have an Atlantic City theme that would provide a historical perspective of the city during the “Boardwalk Empire” era, along with exhibits of favorite attractions such as Miss America and Lucy the Elephant.

The board also approved funding for entertainment on the beach and Boardwalk during the summer, and provided site plan approval for the new early Head Start nursery and educational center in the city.

Board actions take effect following the expiration of Gov. Chris Christie’s statutory review, which is 10 days.

Under construction

The facade project at the former Five and 10 building on the 1600 block of Atlantic Avenue has completed exterior column work and is wrapping up with final painting. Facade work along the 1700 block of Atlantic is continuing at Center City Deli. Storefronts with hurricane-resistant glass are being installed, along with signage and overhangs. Facade work along the 1300 block of Atlantic is continuing with the installation of individual storefronts.

Bass Pro Shops construction is nearly completed, with a grand opening set for mid-April. The store will start moving in its goods next week. Opportunities to work at Bass Pro brought more than 2,000 applications for more than 200 jobs. A mural artist will paint portions of the exterior of the building, and the store will have a brightly lit exterior. The shop will have a wonderful array of activities for children to engage in while their parents shop.

Construction of the 90 new Hope VI housing units continues with site work and the driving of support piling into the ground. This project is bounded by Absecon Boulevard and North Virginia, Baltic and North Maryland avenues.

Atlantic City housing projects were discussed at the monthly meeting of the city’s Planning Department by Planning Director Elizabeth Terenik. Those discussed included the Breakers, a 160-unit project being built using the city tax-abatement program.

Others in the development stage, but not under construction, are the beautiful Tennessee Green at 341 N. Tennessee Ave. by RPM and the Armory Building, formerly the Morris Guard’s building, on New York Avenue. City Council recently approved an ordinance that states that contractors building in Atlantic City must hire up to 40 percent local workers and provide apprenticeship training.

‘Call to Collaboration’

The following was written by Kacy O’Brien and is well worth bringing to your attention:

“A unique community-wide meeting is being planned for Atlantic City by a diverse group of residents, business owners, workers and professionals representing a wide range of fields and backgrounds. The Creative Atlantic City Call to Collaboration is scheduled for February 23 and 24, 2015, from 8 (a.m.) to 4 p.m. at the Noyes Arts Garage of Stockton, at Mississippi and Fairmount avenues.”

This two-day meeting takes a creative, collaborative approach to addressing issues of importance to Atlantic City’s leaders, business owners, nonprofit organizations and residents. The February convening will center on the question “How can we collaborate to build community esteem, foster an innovative entrepreneurial spirit and attract more residents and investment in order to create a thriving Atlantic City?”

For those of you who have the time and the desire to help make Atlantic City what it was in its heyday, you are urged to respond to this opportunity to get us on the way to its restoration. It can be done if you, and others like you, join together to come up with ideas and be willing to work toward the restoration of Atlantic City. Do you care? I hope to see you there.

Voice of the People response

Tuesday’s Voice of the People letter by Sterling Brown is deserving of a response. I am most grateful for the very kind words that he expressed about me and my concern for the area in which we have lived for more than 80 years. Brown was concerned about the lowering of the dunes. I have never spoken or written about removing the dunes.

In last week’s column, I wrote, “Dr. Farrell, Stockton College’s coastal research director, was quoted as stating, ‘The dunes are 14½ feet high.’” In previous writings and discussions on my show, I have called for lowering the dunes that are above that height. There are several places on the beachfront that are higher than 14½ feet. I have been advocating that all above that height should be lowered to it. When you consider the dune grass and plants on top of the dunes, there are many above the recommended height.

Thanks again, Sterling, for your comments on my activities. We are in a crucial time in the history of Atlantic City. You can be assured that this writer will continue to aid and assist in restoring the title of Playground Of The World to this much-deserved community.

Pinky’s Corner appears every Thursday in The Press. The Pinky’s Corner radio show airs 4 to 6 p.m. Mondays through Fridays on WOND-AM 1400. Email Pinky at: