Project “works beautifully” during Hurricane Irene
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (Aug. 30, 2011) – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Jacksonville District announced today that the early completion of the Duval County Hurricane and Storm Damage Reduction project on Atlantic and Jacksonville Beaches helped to protect the beaches and upland structures during Hurricane Irene.
“Project inspections have been conducted by our coastal engineers and the project performed beautifully,” said Steve Ross, project manager. Ross explained that some sand has been moved from the berm and distributed to the waterward portion of the project, but it is expected to return naturally with ocean wave action.
The Duval County project began July 8 and was scheduled for completion September 10. It was completed August 16, almost a month early and just a week prior to Hurricane Irene.
“The timing was perfect,” said Jerry Scarborough, chief of the Coastal and Navigation Branch. “Without this project in place, the damage could have been much worse.”
Approximately 700,000 cubic yards of material were dredged from a borrow area about seven miles offshore and placed in two reaches, one on Atlantic Beach and one on Jacksonville Beach. The $11.8 million project widened the beach berm from 20 to 80 feet in width, and raised the elevation of the intertidal beach by about three to five feet, depending on location.
The Duval County Hurricane and Storm Damage Reduction project is among the oldest and most successful beach restoration projects in the state of Florida, and was honored in 2009 by the American Shore and Beach Preservation Association as one of the seven best restored beaches in the nation. The project was initially constructed in 1980 and represents a long-term cooperative effort between the Corps and the city of Jacksonville. It was last renourished in 2005.
Release no. 11-47