Environment
8:00 am
Tue March 12, 2013

The Dune Abides: Work Begins To Fix Boca Beach Eroded by Sandy

Reporter Christine DiMattei tells us what Boca Raton is doing to restore a popular stretch of beach eroded by Sandy and other autumn storms.

A construction worker dumps sand at Red Reef Park in Boca Raton. The dunes were badly damaged when Hurricane Sandy brushed South Florida as a tropical storm.
Credit The City of Boca Raton

Imagine enough sand to cover about four football fields, four feet high, and you'll get an idea of how much work is being done to build up the dunes in Boca Raton's Red Reef Park.

The beach between Palmetto Park and Glades Roads is a popular swimming and snorkeling spot owned by the city.  Unlike other South Florida beaches where you can practically walk straight from State Road A1A to the sand, Red Reef is accessible by way of boardwalks and crossovers atop a huge system of sand dunes.

Boca Raton Assistant City Manager Mike Woika says the dunes were left in bad shape by Sandy.

"During the storm, some of that volume just at the toe of the dunes was washed out.  And it made kind of an escarpment.  So we're currently going through and replacing that toe of the dune," says Woika.

In other words:  Watch out for that last step -- it's a doozy.

Woika expects the $200,000  dune renourishment project along Red Reef Park to be done in about two weeks.   The construction equipment needs to be removed to make way for the huge numbers of sea turtles expected to build their nests in the beach sand.