Protecting the infrastructure behind the dunes along the South Carolina coast has always been a priority at the Charleston
District, and during the last 10 years, the District has completed 10 beach renourishment projects.
“South Carolina has weathered several major storms over the last several years,” said Wes Wilson, project manager. “Through each storm, the beach renourishments have done their job of protecting the people, homes and businesses beyond the beaches.”
Folly Beach was renourished in 2014 as part of a 50 year agreement with the City of Folly Beach and was the first periodic renourishment the beach received since 2005. This particular project placed 1.4 million cubic yards of sand along 5.34 miles of beach, which cost $30 million.
In 2017, approximately 1.2 million cubic yards of material was placed on North Myrtle, Garden City and Surfside Beaches along 16 miles. Prior to this project it had been nine years since the Grand Strand had been renourished. That renourishment had
been a planned periodic renourishment project, but this $21 million project was funded through federal emergency beach rehabilitation funding from Hurricane Matthew, along with cost-shared construction funding that was appropriated through Congress. Also in 2017, Murrells Inlet received 519,000 cubic yards of material along two miles of beach. That was part of a beneficial use of dredged material projects that was taken from the navigation channel and cost $6 million.
The 2018 beach renourishment project on Folly Beach was funded through federal emergency beach rehabilitation from Hurricanes Matthew, Irma and Florence, which cost $15 million and placed approximately 1.2 million cubic yards of sand along the beach. This project also provided the District with the unique opportunity to dredge the Folly River Federal Navigation Channel and place the dredged material on the beach, as well as renourishing Bird Key Stono Heritage Preserve, which is a 35-acre protected bird sanctuary.
“This project was a win-win,” said Alan Shirey, environmental engineer. “We were able to be good stewards of taxpayers’ money since pumping the dredged material onto Bird Key was the cheapest way to dispose of material and protects the environment by increasing the footprint of Bird Key.”
Approximately 3 million cubic yards of material was placed on Myrtle, Surfside, and Garden City Beaches during 2018 and will be placed on North Myrtle Beach in the upcoming 2019 renourishment. This $45 million project was 100 percent federal funded through federal emergency beach rehabilitation from Hurricanes Irma and Florence.