The Town of North Topsail Beach has completed its Phase Five Beach Restoration Project.
Approximately 1.25 million cubic yards of sand was dredged from an offshore borrow source approximately ½ mile off the shores of Topsail Island.
The dredged material was used to rebuild approximately 3.5 miles of shoreline on the south end of North Topsail Beach (from 3682 Island Drive to the Surf City line). This was the first shoreline protection project constructed at Topsail Island using an offshore source for sand.
The Phase Five Beach Restoration Project was the second event of a five phase plan proposed by Coastal Planning and Engineering (CP&E) that will bring the Town into compliance with FEMA’s requirements for an engineered beach. The Town will now be eligible for FEMA Public Assistance (PA) Program.
This assistance may be provided to replace material lost from the beach during a presidentially declared disaster. In order to maintain eligibility status the Town must establish and adhere to a maintenance program involving periodic nourishments to preserve the project’s original design.
The Town has adopted such a program and is moving forward with the implementation which will include completing the initial restoration of Phases Two through Four and the maintenance of all the phases.
The work was completed by Norfolk Construction at a cost of $16.8 million. Construction began on December 18, 2014 and was wrapped up on June 30, 2015 in accordance with the Town’s extension to move past the April 30th dredge window.
The project was financed through an 11 year U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development loan. Funds from the Town’s 15 cent ad valorem tax and the Town’s 3 percent accommodation tax will go to pay back the loan in future years.
“This has been the largest capital project undertaken by the Town, and despite some unexpected problems in executing the project, rocks in the borrow area and poor weather, everyone who visits the 3 ½ mile project area will be pleased with the results,” said Mayor Daniel Tuman.
“We now have a wider beach which is a great recreational asset. The additional sand also improves wildlife habitat and provides shoreline protection which will mitigate potential storm damage,” Tuman concluded.