It could be 2020 before barriers are put in the water off Coco Plum Beach in Marathon to stop the shoreline from eroding like it has over the last pwo decades.
That’s the plan, according to Marathon Public Works and Engineering Director Carlos Solis, who on Tuesday gave the City Council an update on a beach erosion study that started in September and was recently finished.
“We’re losing sand out there daily,” Solis told council members. “The high tide goes all the way up to the oats and then the entire beach is covered in seaweed.”
Engineers from the firm Bermello Ajamil & Partners collected data on a survey area 3,800 feet wide and designed a renourishment plan but it needs approval from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and other federal agencies before work can start, Solis said.
The approval process can take anywhere from two to three years but he said the plan is to put barriers in the water close to the shoreline.
“Hopefully by the end of March, we can collectively make decisions and see how we want to move forward, including a stop measure of renourishing the beach,but knowing within two or three years you’re going to lose that sand,” Solis said Tuesday.
In 2011, new sand was put down at Coco Plum Beach, which attracts tourists and locals alike. But it has eroded since then. The land does not have a coral base like much of the rest of the Keys.
Solis said he’ll have a completed concept plan and full cost estimate at the March 28 City Council meeting.
Katie Atkins: 305-440-3219