Sebastian News

Channel Maintenance Dredging, Sand Bypass and Beach Renourishment Project Update

The beach phase of the project is nearing completion.  To date, an estimated 110,000 cubic yards of sand has been pumped for placement per the beach fill template designed by coastal engineers.  This weekend, final beach tilling and grading will be completed, and an “As Built” Survey to confirm final beach placement volumes is scheduled to begin soon.  In addition, the Ambersand Beach Access that was temporarily closed has reopened.  Indian River County officials have been working closely with District staff during the project and also completed a project to replace the dune walkover at that access point.  This featured photo shows the finished beach profile looking North from Ambersand.

The next phase of the project is the dredging of the navigation channel connecting the Sebastian Inlet to the Intracoastal Waterway (ICW), scheduled to begin on Monday, April 8.  Approximately 30,000 cubic yards of sand will be pumped into the Sebastian Inlet District Dredged Material Management Area (DMMA) for future beach placement.  The DMMA is a 6-acre sand storage site located Northwest of the Sebastian Inlet State Park Tidal Pool that was built in 2010-2011.  It is used to store sand allowing immediate mobilization for emergency dune and beach repair following hurricanes and other storm events.

The dredge “Lori Hill” is currently positioned West of the inlet over the channel where it makes the connection to the inlet.  Crews will be working their way East and all boaters in the area are urged to take great care when navigating the channel while the project is ongoing.  Dredge operations are 24/7.  To see our notice to boaters for important news including contact information for dredge “Lori Hill”, click here.

Upon project completion, the Sebastian Inlet District will be working with marine biologists in the field to conduct permit required sea turtle, sea grass and nearshore hardbottom monitoring to assess project performance.  The project is expected to be completed in May.  For additional detail or to see prior project updates, visit the PROJECTS tab or call (321) 724-5175.

The Sebastian Inlet District was created in 1919 as an independent special district by act of the Florida State Legislature, and chartered to maintain the navigational channel between the Atlantic Ocean and the Indian River.  The Sebastian Inlet District is governed by a 5-member, elected Commission and its responsibilities include beach re-nourishment and dune repair as part of a state mandated sand bypass system, erosion control, environmental protection and public safety.  The Sebastian Inlet supports a rich and diverse ecological environment that is unparalleled in North America.  The Inlet is vital not only to the ecological health of the Indian River Lagoon, but it is also an important economic engine for local communities in the region.  Known as the premier surfing, fishing, boating and recreational area on the east coast of Florida, the inlet is one of only five navigable channels that connect the Indian River lagoon to the Atlantic Ocean.