Funding of dune walkovers for 3rd, 4th, 5th & 8th streets in the City of St. Augustine Beach. This project fulfills one of the Port’s objectives of providing increased access to the beach for members of the public while simultaneously protecting our fragile dune ecosystem that is vital for robust hurricane protection.
In August 2022, the Port Authority contributed funds to St. Johns County for the fee acquisition of the Genovar property – 31 acres along the San Sebastian River that will provide the public with a deep water access boat ramp together with passive recreation.
St. Augustine Beach Emergency Beach Renourishment
The Corps of Engineers did an inspection post Hurricane Ian and it appears we lost an additional 300k-500k cubic yards of sand as the storm passed near the St. Johns County coastline. The good news is we are currently working on design/permitting of an emergency renourishment along 3-miles of St. Aug Beach coastline with Advertisement scheduled to start 7 March 2023, Bid Opening 6 April 2023 and Award of the Contract on 9 May 2023. The contractor has 60-days to mobilize so actual “work on the beach” could start in late June/early July 2023. This contract will be 100% federal. The sand will come from offshore in federal waters.
Vilano Beach Emergency Renourishment
The Corps of Engineers also inspected this beach post Hurricane Ian and we lost around 500k additional cubic yards since the November 2021 nor’easters. The good news is we are currently working on design/permitting of an emergency renourishment along 3-miles of Vilano Beach coastline with Advertisement scheduled to start 28 March 2023, Bid Opening 27 April 2023 and Award of the Contract on 26 May 2023. The contractor has 60-days to mobilize so actual “work on the beach” could start in late June/early July 2023. This contract will also be 100% federal. The sand will come from offshore in federal waters.
St. Augustine Federal Navigation Channel
The Corps of Engineers will complete a federal channel survey in November 2022 to determine if Hurricane Ian added to the minor shoaling currently in the channel. The last estimate was less than 20,000 cubic yards which isn’t equitable to mobilize a dredge for. I will share the results of this new survey once received.
City of St. Augustine Back Bay Flooding Study
In 2022 Congress appropriated federal funds for USACE to initiate a back bay flooding study for the City of St. Augustine. This study will ultimately look at ways to reduce risk of future flooding within the city limits. Before the study can begin we must execute a feasibility cost share agreement with the City of St. Augustine and this is currently planned for December 2022. Once signed USACE has 3 years to complete the analysis, develop a recommended plan and submit that plan to Congress for authorization to design and construct the recommendation. Examples of alternatives we will consider include but are not limited to floodwalls, floodgates, raising of structures, buy-outs, pump stations, living shorelines, and many more. Each of these alternatives will be evaluated for cost, environmental impacts, socioeconomic factors, public input etc.