Council OKs Study Into New Beach Protection Measures (USA)

Council OKs Study Into New Beach Protection Measures

The Avalon Bor­ough Coun­cil voted unan­i­mously on Wednes­day evening, April 10th, to approve a new study that will exam­ine fea­si­bil­ity of a groin field and other pro­tec­tive mea­sures that would pro­vide greater resiliency for the Bor­ough during future coastal storm events.

The res­o­lu­tion to award the con­tract for the study was approved by a unan­i­mous 5–0 vote.

“It is our respon­si­bil­ity to exam­ine inno­v­a­tive ways to pro­vide a greater level of pro­tec­tion for our com­mu­nity while pre­serv­ing our beaches and dunes that often take the brunt of sig­nif­i­cant coastal storms”, said Avalon Mayor Mar­tin Pagliughi.This new study will eval­u­ate the effec­tive­ness of a groin field and other alter­na­tive shore pro­tec­tion mea­sures that will con­tinue to keep our com­mu­nity as safe as pos­si­ble from future sig­nif­i­cant storm events”.

The con­tract to con­duct the eval­u­a­tion study was awarded to the engi­neer­ing firm of Hatch Mott Mac­Don­ald, which will employ the ser­vices of Mof­fatt & Nichol, one of pre­miere coastal engi­neer­ing firms in the United States. Mof­fatt & Nichol was one of three coastal engi­neer­ing firms that sub­mit­ted respon­sive pro­pos­als to con­duct the study in Avalon. Mof­fat & Nichol brings decades of exper­tise on mit­i­ga­tion strate­gies that can lessen the impact of storm wave con­di­tions and inlet sed­i­ment trans­port processes in the North Atlantic.

Dis­cus­sions have occurred between the Bor­ough of Avalon and the United States Army Corps of Engi­neers regard­ing the pos­si­bil­ity of the devel­op­ment of a groin field or alter­nate mea­sure in Avalon. Should this new study reveal a fea­si­ble alter­na­tive to the Corps’ estab­lished plan of rou­tine beach main­te­nance may pro­vide greater pro­tec­tion for Avalon, the results of the study will be pre­sented to the Corps with a request to incor­po­rate the results into the fed­eral man­age­ment plan.

“The Bor­ough of Avalon has put mil­lions of its own dol­lars into var­i­ous beach and dune nour­ish­ment projects which pro­vided extra­or­di­nar­ily resiliency and prop­erty pro­tec­tion dur­ing Hur­ri­cane Irene and super storm Sandy”, Pagli­ughi said. “This study may show a path to even greater pro­tec­tion of our com­mu­nity while sav­ing the Bor­ough, along with our fed­eral and state part­ners, a sig­nif­i­cant amount of money. Many shore com­mu­ni­ties learned an unfor­tu­nate les­son dur­ing the recent hur­ri­cane that con­tin­ual atten­tion towards storm mit­i­ga­tion needs to occur in order to lessen the impact of a sig­nif­i­cant storm event. In Avalon, we need to explore if a viable com­pli­ment to our beach and dune main­te­nance sys­tem exists”.

This study has a cost not to exceed $190,000 and includes seven ele­ments: Review of exist­ing data and stud­ies; groin field per­for­mance analy­sis; design basis and pre­lim­i­nary design rec­om­men­da­tions; alter­na­tive and sup­ple­men­tal mea­sures; report­ing; meet­ings and pre­sen­ta­tions; and project ren­der­ing and visualization.

The Bor­ough of Avalon has received sig­nif­i­cant praise for its proac­tive approach to prop­erty pro­tec­tion through var­i­ous beach, dune, sea­wall, and bulk­head efforts. On Thurs­day, Feb­ru­ary 7th, JoEllen Darcy, the Assis­tant Sec­re­tary to the United States Army in charge of the United States Army Corps of Engi­neers, tes­ti­fied before the United States Sen­ate com­mit­tee on Envi­ron­ment and Pub­lic Works. Ms. Darcy said “I few over the coast of New Jer­sey after Sandy hit. What I saw was the prop­erty behind the beaches of Avalon were well pro­tected, while just a mile or so nearby where there had been no fed­eral beach project, the com­mu­nity didn’t fare that well”.

Since 2005, Avalon has con­ducted var­i­ous beach and dune restora­tion projects in the north end of the com­mu­nity with a total esti­mated cost of $26.1 mil­lion. The beach fills have been con­ducted by a hydraulic dredge, trucks, and by back pass­ing. Avalon com­pleted a beach fill project in Jan­u­ary, 2013 that resulted in 302,000 cubic yards of sand being placed on north end beaches; that project was com­pletely funded by the fed­eral gov­ern­ment and restored the beaches to conditions that existed before the two recent hurricanes.


Press Release, April 11, 2013