Auckland Council: Tackling Erosion at Shelly Beach

Image source: Auckland Council

New groynes and a seawall will help fight erosion at Shelly Beach in Kaipara Harbor, Auckland Council said in its latest release. 

Groynes are structures that modify sea currents and wave energy to help trap sand on the beach.

At the beach’s northern end is a mangrove colony that developed after a seawall was built in the late 1950s. Some mangroves and part of the seawall were successfully removed in 2012 as a trial. The rest of that seawall and a further 3200 square meters of mangroves will be removed, returning the beach to a more natural state.

The project will also ‘legalize’ the southern end of the backshore platform that is part of the reserve and was formed by a historic land reclamation, the council said.

Rodney Local Board Chair, Beth Houlbrooke, said that extensive public consultation and feedback has helped shape the project: “The foreshore is a popular recreation spot. Removing the old seawall and clearing more mangroves north of the wharf, will open up the beach and restore harbor views.” 

The project features:

  • five new groynes and a seawall that will be constructed of natural beach sediment mixed with cement to mimic the local sandstone;
  • improvements to 450 meters of beachfront by placing additional sand from the Kaipara Harbor between the groynes;
  • a new walkway along the shore to connect the playground and parking areas.

The work is expected to take about six months and be completed before the busy summer months.

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