ST. AUGUSTINE BEACH, Fla. – Approximately 800,000 cubic yards of sand will be added to St. Johns County beaches starting around Dec. 15 as part of renourishment efforts on critically eroded sections of St. Augustine beach.
The US Army Corps of Engineers' contractor, Marinex Construction, Inc., will be dredging Dec. 15 through Jan. 10 from Anastasia Park to Pope Road. Work will progress from Pope Road to the St. Augustine Beach pier from mid-January to early February, followed by sand placement from the pier to 15th to 9th Streets between March and April. Project completion is scheduled for April, weather pending. Pope Road will be used as an equipment staging area and will remain closed for the duration of the project.
The beach will remain open to residents and visitors outside the work areas, and activities will be temporarily suspended for the New Year's Eve festivities along the beach. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said the contractor expects to temporarily close at least 1,200 feet of the beach at a time during the renourishment project. Public access over the dredging pipes will occur roughly over 200 to 300 feet. Swimmers and surfers are strongly encouraged to avoid the construction area to avoid injury.
The purpose of this project is to mitigate for down-drift shoreline impacts caused by the federal navigation channel at St. Augustine Inlet, and to provide storm damage reduction for upland development. The goal of engineered shore projects is to reduce risk and promote coastal resilience, officials with the Army Corps of Engineers said in a media release.
The federal project, led by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, is in partnership with St. Johns County. The cost share is 80.5% federal and 19.5% non-federal, according to the Army Corps of Engineers officials.