For Hometown News
MARTIN COUNTY -- Approximately four miles of beach, stretching from the north Martin County line south to Indian River Plantation will be renourished as part of a federal, state and local project to protect and rebuild local shorelines and dunes.
The project is led by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and is required to maintain local beaches. The last time the beaches were renourished was following the hurricanes in 2005.
Renourishment adds sand to the shoreline in order to widen the beach. It is the only management tool which serves to protect the coastal lands and preserve beach resources by creating a buffer against coastal erosion and flooding.
Equipment for the project will be staged in the south side of the parking lot at Jensen Beach. The area will be fenced off, making it inaccessible to the public for the duration of the project.
A hopper dredge will collect sand several times offshore of the northern part of the project. Once the dredge is filled, it will return to shore, where it will connect to one of the two pipelines being used for the project. Sand will be pumped onto the beaches using the pipeline.
The dredging process will be repeated until the beaches are renourished.
Beachgoers may use the northern end of Jensen Beach, which will remain open during the project.
All of Martin County beaches within the four-mile stretch will be impacted at some point during this project, estimated to take until May to be completed.
Consultants will monitor turtle nests to ensure there are minimal impacts. Additionally, the project calls for turtle-friendly dunes to be constructed in between the conventional dunes so that the turtles can easily come up on the beach and lay their eggs.
The public can view progress to learn what specific beaches will be renourished and when by going online to www.martin.fl.us. Look under the departments engineering and coastal engineering.