Emerald Isle Beach Re-nourishment Project

Hurricane Florence Beach Replenishment Project (2019)

Great Lakes Dredge and Dock Company was awarded the dredging contract for Winter/Spring 2019 along Bogue Banks. The contract focuses mainly on the central parts of the island (Indian Beach & Eastern Emerald Isle). Accordingly, the beach will be closed to beach driving beyond the Ocean Drive “Dog Leg” ramp for the duration of the project. Check back for updates to this project. All information is courtesy of the Carteret County Shore Protection Office

4/10/19 – BOTH HOPPER DREDGES IN OPERATION.  As scheduled, the Ellis Island arrived on Monday (4/8/19) and delivered her first load of sand at about 6 pm that evening and has been working steadily ever since.  She (Ellis Island) is pumping sand via a submerged pipeline landing at 18th Street and is progressing westward towards Emerald Isle’s Eastern Regional Access. The Liberty Island meanwhile continues to pump sand via a pipeline landing at 8th Street and is also progressing west from this point – currently at 12th Street (SEE 4/10/19 PROGRESS MAP).  The “dredging – sail to beach – pump-out – sail back to the borrow area” cycle is different for each dredge – every now and then both will coincide with a beach pump-out (see figure below).   We could run into rough seas this weekend, but weather and mechanical shutdowns are always built into the schedule.
4/8/19 – PIPE FLIPPED TO THE WEST, ELLIS ISLAND ON THE WAY.   Great Lakes Dredge & Dock finished working eastward from the submerged pipeline landing at 8th Street on Saturday (4/6/19), and is now working westward from 8th Street (at 10th Street this morning – SEE 4/8/19 PROGRESS MAP).  The beachfill connecting Reach 1 in Emerald Isle to Reach 2 in Indian Beach have now been merged, the pipes have been removed from the beach, etc.
The dredge, Ellis Island is on her way from Charleston as this update is being prepared (she’s on the north side of Cape Fear @ ~9 am) and should begin dredging/pumping later today.   The Ellis Island will be pumping sand to the beach near 18th street in Emerald Isle and will proceed west towards the Towns Eastern Regional Access.  The Liberty Island will continue pumping from the submerged pipeline at 8th Street and work west.
The dredges Liberty Island has a maximum capacity of 6,540 cubic yards and the Ellis Island 14,800 cubic yards under optimal conditions.  The Ellis Island has been in operation since December 2017 and is the largest hopper dredge in the U.S.   This will be one of her first beach nourishment template jobs (i.e., not just disposal, but meeting a prescribed nourishment template – see cross section).  We’re glad to see her here!

4/5/19 – The Ellis Island (the “big dredge”) is all set to arrive and start dredging/pumping on April 8th.  All the vessel inspections are scheduled, the second trawler is ready to start and relocate endangered/threatened species away from the borrow source and dredge, etc.   Once the Ellis Island arrives on the 8th, it will be pumping sand to the beach near 18th street in Emerald Isle and will proceed west towards the Towns Eastern Regional Access, then flipped towards the east from 18th Street.  The Liberty Island in the meantime has been pumping sand to the beach from 8th Street and is progressing east back towards the completed section of Indian Beach – they were at 2nd Street this afternoon (SEE 4/5/19 PROGRESS MAP).    Great Lakes Dredge & Dock should be done going east over the weekend and will begin pumping towards the west of 8th Street.   Ideally, the Liberty Island pumping to the west will meet the Ellis Island pumping to the east somewhere between the 8th and 18th street pipeline landings on the beach.  Please note that with the second dredge on-site, there will be lots more activity on the beach – more surveying, more pipe, more heavy equipment, etc.
Also earlier today, the project sponsors, engineers, and contractor had a meeting with the dune plant subcontractor (Coastal Transplants).   We discussed our planting grid, watering methods, fertilizers to be used during installation, etc.  Coastal Transplants will likely start planting the dune crest and dune slope towards the latter stages of next week – starting in Reach 3, then Reach 2, and Reach 1 (basically “east to west” – in the same order as the nourishment project has been completed).  The dune grasses (mostly sea oats and some bitter panicum) are sensitive to their new environment when first planted – they are going from a controlled greenhouse environment to the salt air and wind that dominate the beach.  There will be tens of thousands of plants installed as part of this project and they need to be disrupted as little as possible so they can successfully grow and survive.   Thus, please stay off the vegetated part of the dunes – stay in the bare sand pathways that will be created at each walkway.   Please pass along this friendly reminder to your friends or visitors you may see as well.   Thank you.

4/3/19 – Quick, mid-week update.  The Liberty Island continues to utilize “Pipeline Landing #4” at 8th Street and is working eastward from this point towards the Emerald Isle/Indian Beach Town Boundary, and pumping is currently near the 3rd Street Park (SEE 4/3/19 PROGRESS MAP).  The schedule for second dredge, the Ellis Island is still on track for arrival on April 8th and will service the “3rd Pipeline Landing” located near 18th Street and will first work westward from this point towards the Eastern Regional Access.  And lastly, dune planting activities could commence towards the latter part of next week, first starting in “Reach 3” (“east Indian Beach).   See Greenhouse and Rootphotos – these are the actual plants ready for delivery and installation.

4/1/19 – We’re on to Reach 1 (East Emerald Isle) and beach nourishment activities are currently moving east from the submerged pipeline landing near 8th Street back towards the completed Indian Beach section (SEE 4/1/19 PROGRESS MAP).   That submerged line (“subline”) was not fully ready on Friday afternoon and roughly two hopper loads were placed off the subline already in place near 18th Street (see 4th and 3rd Pipeline Landing in progress map).  Photos from today’s activities and dune plants from the greenhouse are below.

3/29/19 – REACH 2 COMPLETED, VEGETATION NOTE, ELLIS ISLAND ARRIVING ON THE 8th – Today is somewhat of a transition day.   For one Great Lakes Dredge & Dock have completed pumping to Reach 2 (SEE 3/29/19 PROGRESS MAP), which therefore concurrently signifies the start of Reach 1 – East Emerald Isle (roughly 65% of the project volume wise).  To this end, the submerged pipeline (subline) that serviced the dredge Liberty Island in Reach 2 is being moved today to East Emerald Isle near 7th Street.  The Liberty Island is using this time to refuel and will likely start using the “new” subline at 7th Street later this afternoon/early evening or the subline already installed near 16th Street (see 4th and 3rd pipeline landing, respectively in the REACH 1 MAP).
Also there has been a change in schedule for the second dredge, the Ellis Island to arrive, which is now planned for April 8th – not the 2nd as reported earlier this week.  This does not hamper the overall completion schedule for the project – April 8th was the approximate date the Ellis Island was originally slated to arrive when the schedule was first presented by Great Lakes Dredge & Dock months ago.
And lastly, some initial discussions with respect to the dune planting phase of the project have taken place and planting of the dune crest and slope (see cross-section) in Reach 3 could begin in a couple/few weeks.  We are using Sea Oats and Bitter Panicum, which are native plants to this area.

3/27/19 – FLIPPED THE PIPE IN REACH 2 – The eastern reach off the 2nd pipe landing was completed yesterday and we are working westward now to complete Indian Beach and therefore Reach 2 (SEE 3/27/19 PROGRESS MAP).  Next week will likely mark a shift in the project in a couple of ways.  (1) We will be starting or will have started Reach 1 (eastern Emerald Isle).  (2) The dredge Ellis Island is scheduled to begin dredging/pumping on April 2nd and will service the “3rd pipeline landing” located near 16th Street in Emerald Isle and will progress west towards the Eastern Regional Access first, then flipped towards the east.  And (3) in all likelihood, the pipeline currently being used in Reach 2 will be moved near 7th Street in Emerald Isle, representing the “4th pipeline landing”.  The Liberty Island will be utilizing this pipeline landing and will first work back east towards the Town line shared with Indian Beach, then flip to the east to meet up with the Ellis Island pipeline/nourishment (See PROGRESS MAP).

3/25/19 – Beach nourishment activities were paused during the latter part of last week because of weather/sea conditions.   However, nourishment resumed early Saturday morning (3/23/19) and has progressed nicely since.  The dredge Liberty Island is using the pump-out station/submerged line in Reach 2 and nourishment activities are advancing eastward from this point – past the Ocean Club, and now past SummerWinds (SEE 3/25/19 PROGRESS MAP).
3/20/19 – Beach nourishment continues to progress eastward towards SummerWinds from the active submerged pipe landing (see March 20, 2019 PROGRESS MAP).   The dredge Liberty Island is now going to be accompanied by the second dredge (Ellis Island) a little earlier than first scheduled and should arrive the 1st week of April.   Both dredges will work in tandem to complete Reach 1 (East Emerald Isle – SEE MAP).

3/18/19 – REACH 3 COMPLETE – Reach 3 (“east” Indian Beach and Salter Path) was completed yesterday (3/17/19), and subsequently the first load of sand was delivered to Reach 2 – SEE 3/18/19 PROGRESS MAP.  Beach nourishment activities are now progressing eastward from the 2nd submerged pipeline landing, and will be “flipped” westward once the eastward run is completed.  Also, the submerged line for Reach 1 in Emerald Isle has been installed near 16th Street (see MAP).

3/15/19 – Strong productivity continues and Reach 3 (Indian Beach/Salter Path) could be completed this weekend (see 3/15/19 Progress Map).  If so, dredging/pump-out operations will move to Reach 2 in Indian Beach where nourishment will progress eastward off the 2nd pipeline landing.

3/13/19 – Productivity/progress remains strong.  Great Lakes Dredge & Dock (GLDD) has completed ~3,000 linear feet of the project in less than 5 days and the eastward leg from the first subline landing in Reach 3 (Indian Beach/Salter Path)  is complete – see photos below.  GLDD begun progressing west from the subline landing this morning (SEE 3/13/19 PROGRESS MAP).

3/10/19 – Great Lakes Dredge & Dock has made some nice progress in less than 48 hours of starting the project (pictures below), and have completed ~1,000 linear feet of beach thus far (see 3/10/19 UPDATE).  The sand quality is excellent visually speaking.   We have received a lot of questions regarding how the dune feature will be constructed and tied into the existing, scarped dune that characterized Bogue Banks after hurricane Florence.  Hopefully this schematic next to an actual constructed portion will provide a good mental image = dune construction image.
3/8/19 (PROJECT START) – Right on schedule.   The dredge Liberty Island arrived earlier this morning from Charleston, S.C., underwent a series of mandatory inspections, and subsequently excavated, sailed, and delivered the first hopper load of sand to Reach 3 at roughly 4:15 pm  (pictures below).  Note that beach nourishment will first be progressing eastward off the 1st subline landing (depicted here).  Also, the second subline has been installed today at Reach 2 (see “Station 514+00” here).
3/6/19 (tentative start date is Friday, 3/8/19) – The dredge Liberty Island is presently docked in Charleston, S.C. and will be transiting to Morehead City Harbor over the course of the next day(s) with dredging/pumping activities scheduled to initiate Friday afternoon/early evening (3/8/19) subsequent to mandatory vessel inspections – again in Reach 3, Indian Beach (see updates below).

Other dredging work in the area – It is also noteworthy to mention the hopper dredges Dodge Island and Padre Island started dredging maintenance work for the Morehead City Harbor Federal Navigation Project on February 26th and will likely conclude at the end of March.  Shoal material will be dredged predominantly from Range A and placed in the new nearshore berm east offshore disposal site (see image).  This scope of work is part of a regional hopper approach for the Brunswick, Savannah, Wilmington, and Morehead City Harbors  (~700,000 cubic yards for Morehead City – bid abstract).

Also a second federal contract for Morehead City Harbor maintenance, which represents a carryover project from the previous fiscal year was also awarded to Great Lakes Dredge & Dock utilizing a pipeline dredge (bid abstract).  The dredging ranges include both the Cutoff and Range A utilizing either the nearshore berm east or west disposal sites (see image), and will likely start sometime in April (~1,600,000 cubic yards).

And lastly the Corps of Engineers’ small hopper dredge, the Murden should be arriving to the area in the middle of March and will service both Morgan Creek (~6 days of dredging and ~7,500 cubic yards) in Range 1  (map)  and Bulkhead Channel (~4 days of dredging and ~ 3,596 cubic yards) in Range 1 (map).   Offshore disposal at the nearshore berm west.

2/26/19 – The first submerged pipeline (“sub-line”) landing was transited to and installed earlier today at Reach 3 in Indian Beach at Station 695+50 (pictures below) as land based pipe continues to be delivered to the Indian Beach 4WD Ramp.

2/25/19 – Land-based piping has begun arriving at the Indian Beach 4WD Ramp is actively being staged along the beachfront (pictures below).
2/20/19 – Both the Indian Beach 4WD Ramp and Dog Leg 4WD Drive Access will be used to transfer land-based dredge pipe arriving via flatbed trucks to the beach.  Front-end loaders and other ancillary equipment should arrive at the Indian Beach 4WD Ramp early next week.  Some sub-line (water-based piping), derricks, barges, etc. have arrived and are holding tight in Bogue Sound, situated just north of Ft. Macon.   Otherwise, there are no schedule changes to report as the dredge Liberty Island is planned to initiate dredging/nourishment the first week of March in Indian Beach (Reach 3) and will be accompanied by the Ellis Island several weeks later – the temporary sub-line pipe landing locations from offshore as depicted for Indian Beach/Salter Path and East Emerald Isle remain the same.

2/14/19 – No schedule changes to report.  The dredge Liberty Island is planned to initiate dredging/nourishment the first week of March in Indian Beach (Reach 3) and will be accompanied by the Ellis Island several weeks later – the temporary pipe landings from offshore as depicted for Indian Beach/Salter Path and East Emerald Isle remain the same.  Mobilization of dredge pipe, ancillary vessels, and equipment to the area should be more pronounced in the weeks ahead.

1/30/19 – There will be three temporary pipeline landings that will serve the dredges Liberty Island and Ellis Island.  In general the sand will be pumped ashore from the hopper dredge and progress east or west, then reversed as generally depicted in the new updated maps for Reach 2 and 3 (see – Indian Beach/Salter Path) and Reach 1 (see – East Emerald Isle).  The Liberty Island will arrive on site likely the first week of March followed by the Ellis Island.

1/22/19 – Great Lakes Dredge & Dock should begin mobilizing land- and water-based pipe, heavy equipment, personnel, etc. towards the latter parts of February and although the schedule is tentative, dredging/pumping could begin the first week of March.