$30 million beach renourishment project begins in Brevard County after hurricanes

South county beaches to receive 500,000 tons of new sand

BREVARD COUNTY, Fla. – From a beach access 6 miles north of Sebastian Inlet, News 6 watched Brevard County’s largest beach renourishment project in two decades being put into action.

Truck drivers brought the sand to the Floridana Beach community, and an excavator took that sand and loaded it onto dump trucks on the beach.

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Those trucks filled in where the hurricanes Ian and Nicole eroded sand last fall, and finally, a bulldozer smoothed that sand.

Repeating that process all winter, Brevard County said hundreds of thousands of tons of sand will be used to rebuild miles of south county beaches.

After Hurricane Ian, county commissioners approved more than $8 million to repair the dunes, but within weeks, Beach Program Director Mike McGarry said Hurricane Nicole forced the county to roughly triple its cost for the project.

“The fact that they were only a month apart made a big difference,” McGarry said.

He said the effect was similar during the 2004 hurricane season.

“Charley gave Brevard a little bit of wear and tear, and then Frances came in and gave the beaches a little more wear and tear, and then Hurricane Jeanne was the knockout punch,” McGarry said.

The county said the new sand is coming from a construction company in Fort Pierce with the county, state and federal government funding the project.

Larry Witham was happy Friday to see work underway.

“They’re doing a really good job because it has to be restored,” the Floridana Bach resident said. “They seem to be on top of it.”

Because of the upcoming sea turtle nesting season, workers have until the end of April to get as much done as they can.

Once nesting season is over in the fall, the county said the project can continue.

“They’ll get it done,” Witham said. “You just have to be patient.”

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About the Author:

James joined News 6 in March 2016 as the Brevard County Reporter. His arrival was the realization of a three-year effort to return to the state where his career began. James is from Pittsburgh, PA and graduated from Penn State in 2009 with a degree in Broadcast Journalism.