Beach Renourishment


The eastern boundary of the Village of Key Biscayne is 6,440 yards, or approximately 1-1/4 miles, of Atlantic Ocean beachfront. Residents and visitors alike enjoy the beauty of the beach and ocean bordering the Village limits, and can walk unimpeded to Cape Florida Bill Baggs State Park to the south, and Miami-Dade County's Crandon Park to the north.

Although the shoreline seaward of the mean high tide line is the property of the State of Florida, the Village maintains the beach area from the upland dunes to the waterline.

Coastal Systems Incorporated, the Village's Beach renourishment contractor, conducts regular assessments of beach and dune performance according to the Village's 50-Year Beach Plan. This plan was the first long-range document of its kind in the state. Examination of historical data show that the central reach of the Key Biscayne beach (the sections that borders the Village) experiences approximately 7,000 cubic yards of erosion and 5 feet of shoreline loss per year.

Recent Beach Renourishment Projects:


2011 Comprehensive Renourishment


An overview of this project is available here.

2006/2007 "Hot Spot" Localized Renourishment Project


Preparations for a localized resupply of sand plus dune rehabilitation at two erosion hot spots along the Village's beachfront began in early fall 2006. The locations were the Silver Sands Motel area and the Ocean Club area. Vegetation mapping was completed in November 2006 and a topographic survey was finished in mid-December 2006. These surveys were then submitted to the State Department of Environmental Protection to begin the permit process.

Once plans were approved and permits issued, sand was trucked to the beach, placed as needed and graded to restore the desired beach profile at the erosion prone areas. Sand was not be pumped from offshore borrow pit as in the 2001 renourishment of the entire Key Biscayne beachfront. Dune restoration in the renourished areas followed.



2000-2001 Beach Renourishment Project Overview


The beach bordering the Village of Key Biscayne, representing approximately 6,600 feet of shoreline along the central portion of the Atlantic coast, was widened by a renourishment project in 2000-2001. Restoration of dunes fanchored by native dune plantings followed the sand pumping and grading phases of the project. Post-construction monitoring was completed in FY 2005-2006.

Three borrow sites, identified for the renourishment project, are located approximately 3,500 to 6,000 feet offshore of the Cape Florida Lighthouse. These areas were determined to contain beach quality sand of sufficient volume for 6 to 7 renourishment projects.

By replicating the dune ecosystems that were present before disturbance by development, the project created a system that previously protected the beach and surrounding areas in an effective matter, while enhancing the biological, ecological and aesthetic value of this erosion control project. Dunes help to retain sand on the beach that would have normally blown away during storms. This, in turn, prevents sand loss to the entire beach system while increasing protection to the uplands from waves and storm surge. Well-established dunes help to directly buffet and impede storm surge, thus protecting beachfront property, as well as inland infrastructure, from low and medium storm surges. The increased beach area provides expanded potential nesting habitat for threatened and endangered sea turtles. People and associated recreational activities are also supported.
The predicted performance of the project is a renourishment interval of 8 to 10 years. This interval is based on the erosional patterns along the Village shoreline, and the performance of the 1987 project.

The Village entered into an Interlocal Funding Agreement with the Miami-Dade County Department of Environmental Resources Management (DERM). The agreement stated that DERM provide 50% of the non-state share of the project, effectively 25% of the total project cost. DERM also conducted all the physical and biological monitoring required by state, federal and county permits. The State of Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) entered into an agreement with the Village to provide 50% share of the total project costs. The Village funded effectively 25% of the project.


1987 Beach Renourishment Project


A one-time nourishment project was conducted in April through June of 1987 by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) to address the erosion of the Key Biscayne shoreline.

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