From the Bucks County Courier Times:
They want to upscale Wildwood, which is like a fast-food joint putting out linen and hiring a wine steward.
For nearly a century Wildwood has been the place on the Jersey shore where a working guy could take his family on a week’s summer vacation and not go bust. Now the place has gone condo crazy.
Many of the small, affordable (and dated) motels that lined the seaside are gone. About 30 have been knocked down in three years.
Rising throughout North Wildwood and Wildwood Crest (two of the five municipalities that make up “The Wildwoods”) are beige, vinyl-clad condo rentals that sleep eight, 10 or more for $2,000 a week — and that’s a deal.
A recently demolished site in North Wildwood has a sign that even more condos are “Coming Soon.” These will have “Hardwood floors” and “Granite counter tops” — the dcor opiates of the upper middle class masses.
Wildwood Mayor Ernest Troi-ano Jr. said growth has been as-tonishing. As real estate prices in nearby Stone Harbor and Cape May soared, investors flooded into the Wildwoods, sending prices skyward like a gull on an updraft.
“Three or four years ago you could pick up a house in Wildwood for 30 or 40 thousand dollars. Today, that same house is selling for 300 or 400 thousand,” he said.
One showed me a project for the “new” boardwalk which he said will have — egad — a Star-bucks, a high-end ice-cream shop and wi-fi cafes for laptop geeks.
“We want the guy who makes $100,000 to $150,000 to come here. It’s beachfront property, it’s premium, and the last I checked, God ain’t makin’ any more of it,” one agent told me.