There are 24 miles of sandy beaches along the Broward County coastline. the beaches of Broward County attract millions of visitors each year and are enjoyed by residents of the entire South Florida region and beyond. Not only do beaches support tourism and the local economy, they also help protect upland property while providing critical habitat to sea turtles, shore birds, and other marine wildlife. The long-term management of the County's shoreline involves shore protection projects, dune enhancements, and regional sediment management, with extensive partnership with State and Federal agencies.
What is Beach Nourishment
The natural forces of coastal storms, wind, tides, waves, and currents constantly move sand along our coast. Some of the sand is carried along the shore and redeposited further down the beach, or it is carried offshore into sandbars where it is stored temporarily. Sometimes, major weather events and these natural forces cause the sand moving along the shoreline to leave the system entirely. This causes the shoreline to recede, or move further landward. Beach erosion refers to this loss in beach width and sand volume and the advancement of the shoreline landward. Waves and storm surge can cause significant destruction to an eroded beach resulting in the loss of property, wildlife habitat, and recreational area.
Beach nourishment is a means of shore protection designed to retain and rebuild natural systems, such as beaches, while reducing or preventing the consequences of beach erosion. Beach nourishment is the only shore protection method that adds sand to the coastal system and is the preferred method for shore protection today.
During construction of a beach nourishment project, beach-quality sand from either an offshore borrow area or upland sand mine is placed along the coastline to restore an eroding beach. Ultimately, the beach nourishment project widens a beach and advances the shoreline seaward. Dunes may also be constructed or restored in order to protect the shore by acting as naturally protective buffers. Like any other major infrastructure, restored beaches must be maintained to stay healthy. Think of Broward County’s beaches like a road, requiring periodic resurfacing with sand. To ensure that the nourished beach continues to provide protection from the effects of hurricanes and coastal storms, the project must be supplemented with additional quantities of sand, called beach maintenance or renourishment, as needed.
Broward County has successfully managed its beaches for over 50 years, improving its beach nourishment program with each restoration event. Since 1970, large and moderate scale beach nourishment projects have commonly been used as a means of restoring and maintaining eroded areas of Broward County shoreline.
The next planned renourishment event is along Lauderdale-By-The-Sea, Pompano, and Fort Lauderdale Beaches. The purpose of the Segment II renourishment project is to reconstruct areas of eroded beach and increase storm protection to the upland development along portions of the shoreline. The project will place approximately 750,000 cubic yards of sand along 4.9 miles of shoreline along two reaches of shoreline between Hillsboro Inlet and Port Everglades. The project is currently out to bid on BidSync and construction is anticipated to commence in late 2015. The County has received permits to construct the project from both the State and Federal resource agencies and is currently negotiating the Project Participation Agreement (PPA) with the Army Corps of Engineers (Corps). The PPA is a legally binding agreement between the Federal government and the County, and it describes the project and responsibilities of the Federal Government and County in cost-sharing and execution of the work. The project cannot be awarded to a contractor until execution of this agreement, or the Federal share (approximately $30.5M) would be jeopardized. the Corps has stated that receipt of the final PPA for execution is expected sometime in November.
In April of 2005, work began on restoring 6.2 miles of Broward County’s shoreline from the John U. Lloyd Beach State Park (JUL), just south of Port Everglades, to the Broward County line in Hallandale Beach. The $23.8 million undertaking, known as the Broward County Segment III Shore Protection Project, involved the placement of approximately 1.7 million cubic yards of sand on South Broward’s eroded beaches. Hallandale Beach, Hollywood, and Dania Beach shorelines were impacted by the renourishment project, which was in the planning stages for a number of years. The beach was widened, depending on previous width, up to 200 feet. The project was completed in February of 2006. Work on the northern end of the project at John U. Lloyd Beach State Park was not scheduled to begin until November of 2005 because of the sea turtle nesting season. Three structures were constructed at the northern end of the park to “lock-in” the sand along the County's southern shoreline. Barring unexpected weather or nautical conditions, the new beach should have a life span of at least ten years.
The project was the first beach restoration effort in Broward County in more than a decade. Great Lakes Dock and Dredge Company, based in Oak Brook, Illinois, was the prime contractor for the project. The company has restored more eroded recreational and commercial waterfronts in the United States than any other company in its field. The project was sponsored and administered by the Broward County Board of County Commissioners, with funding from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the State of Florida Department of Environmental Projection, and the municipalities Hallandale Beach, Hollywood, and Dania Beach.
Pertinent facts and figures about the project:
- Total paid quantity of sand placed: 1,837,600 cubic yards (cy).
- 205,200 cy was placed on Hallandale Beach.
- 999,700 cy was placed on Hollywood Beach.
- 87,700 cy was placed on Dania Beach.
- 545,000 cy was placed on JUL.
- 188,000 cy of the sand is paid for 100% by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for repair of erosion caused by the 2004 hurricanes.
- The costs for 1,104,600 cy are shared by the Corps of Engineers, the State of Florida, Broward County, and the cities of Hallandale Beach, Hollywood, and Dania Beach.
- The costs for the 545,000 cy of sand at JUL are shared by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the State of Florida.
- At the north end of JUL, a rock spur was constructed from the south jetty of Port Everglades and two rock T-Head groins were built just south of the jetty.