The beach replenishment project that has been in the works for the better part of the last two decades is finally underway.
The project, which will see the creation of 22-foot dunes and 200-foot wide beaches up and down the barrier island, officially started late last week, when the dredge boat R.S. Weeks arrived off Mantoloking. An emergency replenishment project was completed in Ortley Beach in May and June, but the project as a whole began with the boat’s arrival.
The R.S. Weeks is a cutter dredge, meaning its motors suck sand up from the ocean bottom and immediately send it to shore. The project will also include hopper dredges, which impel sand from donor sites, then travel to the opening of a pipeline to deliver the sand. Currently, crews are working south of Herbert Street, which famously breached during Superstorm Sandy, flooding the back bays and creating the one of the iconic photos of the storm.
The project will last into June 2018, according to the Philadelphia district of the U.S Army Corps of Engineers, which is in charge of the $128 million project. The current schedule is:
- Mantoloking – estimated construction early-mid October 2017- December/January
- Seaside Heights – estimated construction between December/January-February 2018
- Seaside Park – estimated construction between February 2018-April 2018.
- Toms River Township (Ortley) – Hopper dredges will return to complete the full dune and berm template in Ortley Beach between January 2018 – March 2018.
- Brick Township – estimated construction between February 2018-April 2018
- Toms River Township (Normandy) – estimated construction between March 2018-May 2018.
- Lavallette – estimated construction between April 2018-June 2018