Jacksonville, Fla. – Jacksonville District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, received unanimous approval today by a senior government panel to move forward with the final state and agency review on the Flagler County, Fla., Hurricane and Storm Damage Reduction (HSDR) Project.
The Civil Works Review Board, which convened in Washington D.C., received a detailed presentation from the Jacksonville District team and Flagler County officials. The board’s approval of the study marks a significant milestone.
The primary purpose of an HSDR project is to reduce storm damage to coastal infrastructure, including residential and commercial property and public facilities. Opportunities to reduce the risk of coastal damages and improve eroded conditions were examined and approximately 9.7 miles of Flagler County coastline were investigated during the feasibility study process.
Beach and dune erosion, both long-term and storm induced, is the greatest problem in the Flagler County area. Due to unique beach sediments and the closeness of State Road A1A and existing coastal development, the county’s dune system is experiencing a long-term erosion trend with little opportunity for natural recovery. The establishment of a functional dune system is key to reducing damages to infrastructure and maintaining environmental quality. State Road A1A is the only north-south hurricane evacuation route for communities along the coastline, which makes it essential for public safety during evacuation events.
The Corps' plan will provide additional armoring and protection of upland infrastructure, including SR A1A. The project consists of a 10-foot seaward extension of the existing dune along 2.6 miles between 7th to 28th streets in central Flagler Beach. Construction of the dune will extend the existing berm and the entire active profile seaward.
To build the berm, the Corps anticipates dredging sand from an offshore borrow site and pumping it onto the adjacent beach. “We expect that initial construction will cover some vegetation, but new vegetation, similar to the existing foliage, will be planted following construction completion,” said Corps Project Manager Jason Harrah.
The Corps also anticipates renourishment events would occur every 11 years to repair eroded areas.
“We look forward to a continued partnership with the county to provide a project that benefits and protects the citizens of Flagler Beach,” Harrah said.
The next step in the process is the final state and agency review in September, followed by completion of the Chief of Engineers Report in November 2014. From there, the project must be authorized by Congress via a Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) bill and funded through an Energy and Water Development Appropriations Act bill before the Corps may proceed to project construction.
For more information about federal shoreline protection projects, please visit www.saj.usace.army.mil, missions, Civil Works.